UPDATE: Shia LaBeouf was charged with misdemeanor assault and a harassment violation after a fight occurred at his anti-Trump art piece in Queens, according to New York Police Department spokesman Sgt. Thomas Antonetti via CNN. The 30-year-old actor was arrested and released on Thursday, according to Det. Christopher Pisano.
According to police, the fight occurred around 12:30 a.m. at the Museum of the Moving Image in Astoria, Queens. A “shouting match” reportedly broke out between two groups and LaBeouf allegedly ripped off the scarf of a 25-year-old man, scratching him the process, and pushed him. LaBeouf was charged with misdemeanor assault and later released.
It’s unclear exactly what sparked the scuffle, though some of the incident was captured on LaBeouf’s installation, a video project called “He Will Not Divide Us” that allows people to repeat the titular phrase into a live streaming camera. Per ABC News, the fight took place off-camera, but someone can be heard saying, “He hit me,” after which someone else replies, “He didn’t hit you … He moved his face thing. Shia didn’t hit anybody, alright?”
On Twitter, He Will Not Divide Us claimed the incident was sparked after a man made an anti-Semitic remark to LaBeouf, who is Jewish. In a short video – not recorded at the art installation – an unidentified man comes up to LaBeouf, says, “What’s up,” then, “Hitler did nothing wrong,” after which LaBeouf shoves him.
A police source, however, told the Daily News that this incident was unrelated to LaBeouf’s arrest, but added that inflammatory language did partially instigate the altercation.
“He Will Not Divide Us” opened at 9 a.m. last Friday, January 20th, and was organized by LaBeouf and his partners Nastja Säde Ronkko and Luke Turner. The project will run continuously for four years, during the duration of Trump’s presidency.