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Lindsay Lohan's probation could be over by March, judge says

Lindsay Lohan in court Jan 17

Actress Lindsay Lohan was all smiles Tuesday as a judge said she could end her nearly five years of constant watch by the courts in March for probation for driving under the influence and shoplifting.

Los Angeles Superior Judge Stephanie Sautner said Lohan had met her required 12 sessions of community service at the L.A. County morgue and mandatory therapy sessions and is on pace to end probation in March if she completes her 60 days of community service.

"She has done it all on schedule," Sautner said during a hearing in the Airport Courthouse. "Keeping doing what you are doing. You appear to be doing it well."

Lohan must still complete 15 more community service days and four therapy sessions by Feb. 22. Saunter said she expects Lohan to have it all wrapped up by March 29.

Lohan, 25, in recent years has made more court appearances than movies following a 2007 DUI conviction and 2011 theft conviction. She has repeatedly violated probation and been jailed five time for short periods.

But facing the prospect of a longer sentence from Sautner and experiencing an uptick in her career with a Playboy cover, she has received glowing probation reports.

At her last hearing in December, Sautner praised Lohan for fulfilling her scheduled responsibilities and promised to end her probation as early as February if she continued on the right path.

Last year, Lohan pleaded guilty to the theft of a necklace from a Venice jewelry store. But she violated probation by missing required workdays at the Downtown Women's Center and other therapy appointments.

Sautner sentenced Lohan to 30 days in jail and ordered her to complete her community service at the morgue, where she is working as a janitor. She spent less than five hours in custody.

In the last couple of months, Lohan has appeared to be back on track.

"Miss Lohan, you have actually done your work," Sautner told her at the December hearing. "You are doing well and I would like to see it continue."

Sautner's tone in recent hearings is removed from the frustration she expressed in October. Last fall, Lohan admitted in court she violated probation by missing required workdays and appointments.

She missed 12 of the 20 scheduled workdays at the Downtown Women's Center that were imposed in May, when she pleaded guilty to the theft of the necklace from a Venice jewelry store.

Lohan also canceled 14 of 19 scheduled appointments for court-ordered psychotherapy, according to law enforcement sources familiar with the case but not authorized to discuss it.

Sautner had warned Lohan that if she failed to meet the terms of her probation, she would be returned to jail for an additional 270 days.

Lohan is required to report to the court each month and was seen last week visiting probation staff.

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-- Richard Winton

Photo: Lindsay Lohan, right, in court Tuesday with her attorney Shawn Holley at the Airport Courthouse in Los Angeles. Credit: Gary Friedman / Los Angeles Times

 
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