- A woman said wearing a crop top in Winnfield, Louisana, landed her a ticket for “indecent exposure.”
- Casey LaCaze-Lachney shared her experience in a now-viral TikTok from June 2022.
- A year later, in a new TikTok, she said the city has expunged the citation from her record.
A woman has settled an “indecent exposure” citation a year after she was ticketed over wearing a crop top at a festival, she said.
On June 6, 2022, Casey LaCaze-Lachney took to TikTok to recount her experience at the Dugdemona Festival, an annual festival, in Winnfield, Louisiana. As of Thursday, the video has been viewed over 8 million times to date.
“You see my outfit?” she said in the viral video, spinning to show her black crop top and jean shorts. “I got a fucking ticket for indecent exposure in Winnfield, Louisiana.”
LaCaze-Lachney went on to say that three female police officers gave her a ticket at the festival, alleging that they didn’t give her the option to leave the event and change her clothes at her home, a mile away.
“All of my bits are covered. The fuck?” she said in the video. “Are you kidding me?”
The Winnfield Police Department appeared to respond to LaCaze-Lachney’s TikTok in a Facebook post on June 15, 2022, saying her video “had a negative impact on the service of our police officers during this family fun-filled festival.”
“An unnamed citizen was cited for a city ordinance and has since taken to a popular social media site, blasting police officers,” the post said. “However, 3 female officers responded to various complaints about the person’s attire and the person of interest was issued a citation under the city ordinance.”
The post went on to cite a city ordinance that stated, “It shall be unlawful for any person to wear pants, trousers, shorts, skirts, dresses, or skorts in any public place or places open to the public which either intentionally exposes undergarments or intentionally exposes any portion of the pubic hair, cleft of buttocks, or genitals.”
However, LaCaze-Lachney’s outfit in the video didn’t expose any of those parts of her body.
The post went on to say that LaCaze-Lachney would have to appear in court to settle the dispute and that she could have had to pay of up to $300 or perform 40 hours of community service if she was found guilty of indecent exposure.
But the Winnfield Police Department dropped the charges on July 12, 2022, and the chief of police Johnny Ray Carpenter issued LaCaze-Lachney an apology, saying her outfit did not violate the city ordiance, according to a July 2022 from the Shreveport Times.
Then, on June 19, 2023, LaCaze-Lachney took to TikTok to share that the city had expunged the citation from her record.
She said in the video — which has been viewed just over 10,000 times — that she and her legal team “had a couple of meetings” with city representatives over the course of the last year, but there was little movement. Then, she said, a week before her legal team was going to file an official complaint against the city over the incident, representatives from the city called her and said they wanted to settle.
After a week of negotiations, the city agreed to pay for and expunge the citation from LaCaze-Lachney’s record, she said, and representatives also agreed to examine the ordinance cited against her with the city council. (Representatives for the City of Winnfield did not respond to Insider’s request for comment.)
“I know that may not be a big deal to you guys, but to me and the city of Winnfield, it was actually a really big deal,” she said of the settlement.
However, LaCaze-Lachney said she never received clarification from the police or the city as to why she was cited in the first place.
“I still haven’t gotten any answers as to why this happened to me, and I don’t think I’m going to,” she said.
In a statement to Insider, Randall T. Hayes, one of LaCaze-Lachney’s lawyers, called his client “the kind of citizen that every town needs.”
“She stood up for her rights and she refused to accept bad behavior from the police,” he continued. “Government officials, especially in small towns, often get away with misconduct because their victims don’t fight back. Casey fought back in the best way possible — by speaking out and by demanding that her rights be recognized.”
“If more people did as she has done, the world would be a better place,” he said. “It was my privilege to be able to help her hold the city accountable.”