Erykah Badu Risked A Year In Jail To Film “Window Seat”

News

By: Vibe / March 31, 2010

Erykah Badu literally pulled a fast one on the city of Dallas.

In her controversial video for “Window Seat,” she strolled Dealey Plaza removing layers of clothing until she was completely nude—a minor offense—but no charges have been filed against the songstress and probably never will be, according to a Dallas Police official.

“This happened almost two weeks ago and it’s hard to prosecute someone who is charged with a Class B or C misdemeanor,” Senior Corpal Janice Crowther, a spokeswoman for the Dallas Police Department, told VIBE. “Someone would have had to call the cops right away and filed charges right then, but right now it’s probably not going to happen.”

Public nudity in Dallas is considered a Class B misdemeanor, which is punishable with up to 180 days of jail time and a maximum $2,000 fine. However, if Badu had been arrested, she would have been charged with a Class A misdemeanor—because children were present—fined up to $4,000 and face a maximum of one year in prison for indecent exposure.

According Badu’s Twitter page, the controversial video was filmed in one take. She walked through the plaza prior to taping to set up the shot and then arranged to meet her videographer the following day. In order to have shot the video legally, she would have had to have a police officer present while filming, which wouldn’t have been allowed on Dealey Plaza anyway.

“She got up and ran away so fast,” says Crowther. “People were too distracted and shocked to call 9-1-1 [but] even if they did, this is a hard case to prove because any witness who comes forward would have to prove they were there.

“Even if a district attorney decided to pursue the case,” Crowther continued, “it’s extremely hard to prove so she will most likely not be charged.” —Starrene Rhett

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