Shia LaBeouf and Margaret Qualley Hold Hands on Post-Christmas Hike amid FKA Twigs Lawsuit

Shia LaBeouf and Margaret Qualley were spotted kissing days after the actor's ex FKA Twigs filed a lawsuit against him

Shia LaBeouf heads out on a shirtless hike with his girlfriend Margaret Qualley in Los Angeles
Photo: Snorlax/MEGA

Shia LaBeouf is stepping out with Margaret Qualley over the holidays amid allegations of abuse against the actor from his ex-girlfriend, singer FKA Twigs.

On a hike in Los Angeles the day after Christmas, the Transformers actor and the Once Upon a Time... in Hollywood actress were seen holding hands. This follows previous sightings after LaBeouf was spotted picking up Qualley from the LAX airport earlier this month. They were then seen showing PDA during various other outings.

A source tells PEOPLE LaBeouf, 34, and Qualley, 26, sparked a connection after starring in a NSFW music video together earlier this year.

"They got close when they filmed Love Me Like You Hate Me in the early fall," the source says. "They are both very passionate people. They are not dating, but have fun together. Margaret is a social butterfly and has a big group of friends. She doesn’t really bring Shia around this group though. She is not interested in having a boyfriend."

The music video the two filmed served as visual to a song by Qualley's sister Rainey, who performs music under the name Rainsford. The video, in which they appear nude, depicts the highs and lows of a relationship between LaBeouf's and Qualley's characters — including a lengthy sex scene interspersed throughout.

Shia LaBeouf and Margaret Qualley
Shia Labeouf, Margaret Qualley. getty images (2)

The sightings come after singer FKA twigs, born Tahliah Debrett Barnett, filed a lawsuit earlier this month against ex-boyfriend LaBeouf, accusing him of sexually and physically assaulting and battering her and knowingly giving her a sexually transmitted disease.

The 32-year-old singer described several instances of physical abuse in the documents obtained by PEOPLE.

"What I went through with Shia was the worst thing I've ever been through in the whole of my life," Barnett said in an interview with The New York Times. "I don't think people would ever think that it would happen to me. But I think that's the thing. It can happen to anybody."

LaBeouf later addressed the allegations in several emails to the newspaper, saying he was in no position "to tell anyone how my behavior made them feel."

"I have no excuses for my alcoholism or aggression, only rationalizations. I have been abusive to myself and everyone around me for years," he wrote to The Times. "I have a history of hurting the people closest to me. I'm ashamed of that history and am sorry to those I hurt. There is nothing else I can really say."

In a different email, however, he said that "many" of the allegations were not true but explained he owed the women "the opportunity to air their statements publicly and accept accountability for those things I have done."

Reps for LaBeouf did not respond to PEOPLE's request for comment at the time, while Barnett's attorney Bryan Freedman said to PEOPLE: "Shia LaBeouf has abused Ms. Barnett, Ms. Pho and others. We tried to resolve this matter privately on the condition that Mr. LaBeouf agree to receive meaningful and consistent psychological treatment. Since he was unwilling to agree to get appropriate help, Ms. Barnett filed this suit to prevent others from unknowingly suffering similar abuse by him."

Last Thursday, LaBeouf's lawyer, Shawn Holley, told Variety that the actor is seeking help.

"Shia needs help and he knows that. We are actively seeking the kind of meaningful, intensive, long-term inpatient treatment that he desperately needs," Holley said in a statement to the outlet.

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