Shia LaBeouf thanks police officer who arrested him in 2017 'for changing my life'

Hindsight is 20/20 for Shia LaBeouf.

The 33-year-old actor expressed his gratitude at the Hollywood Film Awards in Los Angeles Sunday night for the police officer who arrested him for public intoxication in Savannah, Ga., in July 2017.

"I want to thank the police officer who arrested me in Georgia, for changing my life," LaBeouf said, according to USA Today. Some in the crowd apparently laughed at LaBeouf's remarks, seemingly not knowing if the "Transformers" star was kidding.

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An officer with the Savannah Police Department arrested LaBeouf – who, at the time, was filming "The Peanut Butter Falcon" – for public drunkenness, disorderly conduct and obstruction after he asked someone for a cigarette and they refused.

Shia LeBeouf, 33, was arrested in Savannah, Ga., in 2017 for disorderly conduct. On Sunday, he thanked the police officer who arrested him "for changing my life."

Shia LeBeouf, 33, was arrested in Savannah, Ga., in 2017 for disorderly conduct. On Sunday, he thanked the police officer who arrested him "for changing my life." (Chatham County Sheriff's Office)

Investigators said the former child actor became disorderly, “using profanities and vulgar language in front of the women and children present.” When he was told to leave, police alleged he refused and became aggressive toward an officer, then ran to a nearby hotel to avoid arrest.

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LaBeouf pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor charge of obstruction, was ordered to pay $2,680 in fines and fees, perform 100 hours of community service, enroll in anger management counseling and complete a drug and alcohol evaluation.

During rehab, he wrote the script for his autobiographical film, "Honey Boy" — for which he accepted a breakthrough screenwriting award at the award show on Sunday night. In the film, LaBeouf plays an alcoholic and abusive father of a child actor. Alma Har’el, the director of the movie, said LeBeouf "wrote this script in rehab and actually sent me an email from there with the script."

Shia LaBeouf accepted the Breakthrough Screenwriter Award for his film "Honey Boy" at the Hollywood Film Awards in Los Angeles, Calif., on Sunday night.

Shia LaBeouf accepted the Breakthrough Screenwriter Award for his film "Honey Boy" at the Hollywood Film Awards in Los Angeles, Calif., on Sunday night. (Kevin Winter/Getty Images)

When Robert Downey Jr. presented LaBeouf his award over the weekend, he praised the screenplay, describing it as "damn near perfect. He added it was "easily the best and bravest film I have seen in years."

LaBeouf also thanked his therapist and sponsor "for saving my life" and his parents "for giving my life."

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The film premiered at the Sundance Film Festival on Friday in Park City, Utah, in January. "Honey Boy" is set to be released Nov. 8.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.