Lindsay Lohan could be back in jail after hearing
Lindsay Lohan managed to spend only a few hours in jail Friday after failing a drug test, but experts said her legal troubles are far from over.
Superior Court Judge Elden Fox was overruled in his effort to send Lohan to jail for at least 30 days, but it's possible he will place her behind bars after a hearing Oct. 22 about her latest probation violation.
"Judge Fox will be motivated to make a real impact on Ms. Lohan at the sentencing on the probation violation," said veteran defense attorney Glen Jonas. "Lohan admitted to the violation in the public forum, so she is at the mercy of the court. Now Lohan is free ... free to violate her bail conditions, free to pick up another criminal case and free to escape the warm embrace of sobriety."
Jonas predicted that had Lohan done the jail time, Fox would have been inclined to set her free at the Oct. 22 hearing -- particularly if she behaved well in jail.
"Judge Fox signaled loud and clear that he intended to give Lohan a sentence of 'time served' at the next hearing. Judge Fox was taking a stern but measured approach," he said.
Fox ordered Lohan jailed without bail until the hearing on whether the actress should be incarcerated for using drugs in violation of her probation on a drunk-driving conviction.
It also appeared to be an effective way to skirt Los Angeles County's early-release policy and keep Lohan incarcerated for a month. The 24-year-old actress has twice received jail sentences, but on both occasions, she served less time than ordered because of overcrowding at the women's jail. Most female inmates serve a quarter of their sentence.
Lohan's attorney, Shawn Chapman Holley, challenged the legality of holding her client without bail based on a probation violation for a misdemeanor, and on Friday afternoon another judge granted the actress $300,000 bail and she was able to leave jail.
Attorney Mark Geragos said it was not unusual for a judge to deny bail on a probation violation and set a hearing date to cover the time it might take to serve a full jail sentence.
"More and more judges are doing this very thing to ensure the sheriff doesn't release the person early," Geragos said.
Others said Fox was treating Lohan differently than other defendants.
"She neither presents a danger to the community nor is she a flight risk," said L.A. defense attorney Mike Cavalluzzi. "Those are the primary criteria for either denying bail or setting an appropriate amount of bail, especially given that this is a misdemeanor."
The star of "Freaky Friday" and "Mean Girls" was processed out of the Century Regional Detention Facility about 11:40 p.m. Friday. She was whisked out of a back door and driven to an undisclosed location.
In posting bail, Lohan must agree to conditions, including wearing a SCRAM alcohol- and drug-detection device, refraining from being in areas where alcohol or drugs are being consumed, and being subject to immediate search by law enforcement.
-- Richard Winton
Photo: Lindsay Lohan. Credit: Al Seib / Los Angeles Times