The Los Angeles Criminal Law Blog

LiLo Charged With Lying to Cops, Faces Jail Time

They say LiLo lied
If it is true, she'll be tried
She faces jail time

That brilliant haiku summarizes Lindsay Lohan's morning, and many others like it, for the troubled star. Today, TMZ is reporting that she'll be charged for lying to the police about a car accident back in June. Back in March, we celebrated her triumph in getting past supervised probation. She had completed every part of her sentence but informal probation. She was nearly done with the justice system.

In June, her return to work meant a rumored return to old habits. She was in a traffic accident, where she allegedly rear-ended a big rig with her rented Porsche. She told the cops that her assistant was driving. Her assistant told the cops that Lindsay was driving. The truth, it seems, was that Lohan was behind the wheel.

Why the lie? No one knows for sure. As we reported earlier, she tested negative for alcohol and drugs. On the other hand, there was a water bottle filled with vodka near the crash site (which was tossed into the vehicle's trunk before it was towed, but was not tied conclusively to Lohan) and now we're hearing that prescription pills were found in her purse and scattered in the trunk.

The Santa Monica Police Department wanted to nail her. Unfortunately for them, the pills were all legally prescribed. The drug and alcohol test administered to her after the crash would have detected the presence of high levels of any drug - legal or illegal. In short, that means there was no DUI and no drug possession.

That leaves the lie. Had they shown a crime underneath the lies, they could have charged her with a felony for lying to the police. Instead, they are left with a miniscule misdemeanor. Unfortunately for Lohan, that misdemeanor also could lead to revocation of her probation. Should that happen, it almost certainly would lead to some jail time or community service.

Don't hold your breath hoping for a long sentence, however. Even with her spotty history of staying out of trouble, something as minor as this, combined with the cost of jailing a celebrity, might lead to another slap on the wrist. Celebs often require protective custody or a solo cell, for obvious reasons. Our jails are crowded enough at this point. Plus, we can already hear her lawyer's arguments:

"Your honor, she had just been in an accident. She was struck in the head by an air bag. She was confused. Jail time isn't warranted here. The prosecutor has no other evidence of illegal conduct."

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