The sportsman Hines Ward and a female friend had just left a restaurant in North Hollywood when they were pulled over by cops investigating a complaint about a missing vehicle.
They were ordered out of the car and Hines was cuffed by armed officers until the woman managed to prove the vehicle was hers.
It subsequently emerged Hines Ward's companion, whose identity has not been released, had filed a stolen car complaint in April but had failed to notify authorities after relocating it.
Sergeant Maria Morrison says, "She had gone somewhere, misparked it, reported it stolen and found it later."
Ward, who plays for the Pittsburgh Steelers, and his professional dancing partner Kym Johnson have made it to the final six couples on the reality TV show, "Dancing with the Stars".