Actor Shia LaBeouf arrested during protest outside museum in Astoria, Queens

ByEyewitness News via WABC logo
Friday, February 10, 2017
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A.J. Ross has the latest details.

ASTORIA, Queens (WABC) -- Actor Shia LaBeouf was charged with misdemeanor assault early Thursday after getting into a dispute with a fellow protester outside the Museum of the Moving Image in Astoria, Queens, where he is hosting an ongoing anti-Trump protest.

The 30-year-old actor got into a verbal dispute with a 25-year-old Bronx man outside the museum at around 12:35 a.m., authorities said.

The two were both chanting "He will not divide us," referring to President Trump, when they got into the dispute.

Police said LaBeouf went to rip the other man's scarf off. As he reached over, he scratched the man's face and shoved him away.

The other man refused medical attention for the scratches to his face but police responded and took LaBeouf, who was wearing an NYPD sweatshirt, into custody.

He was charged with misdemeanor assault and received a desk appearance ticket for court at a later date.

Watch video of LaBeouf leaving the police precinct in Queens here:

A livestream video of the performance, going on outside the Museum of the Moving Image in Astoria, showed LaBeouf being apprehended in the background.

The livestream went up the morning of the inauguration, a participatory public art project LaBeouf and two collaborators intend to have running 24 hours a day for the next four years of the Trump Administration.

Actor Shia LeBeouf, left, stands in front of a live-steam camera with the words "HE WILL NOT DIVIDE US" posted on a wall outside of the the Museum of the Moving Image
AP Photo/Deepti Hajela

LaBeouf returned to the museum in Queens Thursday morning before leaving.

LaBeouf has spent the first few days of Trump's presidency swaying, dancing and repeating the phrase "He will not divide us" in front of the live camera.

Actor Jaden Smith stood in front of the camera for hours repeating the phrase on the day of President Trump's inauguration.

Technically, the project from LaBeouf and his performance art partners isn't about opposition to Trump, LaBeouf told The Associated Press in an interview conducted on Monday in front of the livestream camera.

"We're anti-division out here. Everyone's invited," LaBeouf said. "I'm just saying, 'Be nice to each other.'"

After being processed by police at the 114th Precinct, LaBeouf emerged from the precinct hours later flashing a defiant "rock on" sign.

"We will not be divided!" he declared, a takeoff on the name of his performance art project.

He hopped a green cab directly back to the protest, once again appearing in front of the live camera and celebrating his release, while no longer wearing the NYPD sweatshirt.

(The Associated Press contributed to this report.)