Paris Hilton Plea Deal Monday

On Monday, Paris Hilton will plead guilty to two misdemeanors to settle her Las Vegas felony cocaine possession charge.

It's a very harsh deal. She's agreeing to two suspended six month jail sentences, a year of unsupervised probation, and if she merely gets arrested (no conviction required) for anything other than a minor traffic offense, she agrees to immediately go in and serve the year.

The complaint against her will be amended to add a charge of obstruction of a police officer. The factual basis? She lied when she told the arresting officer that the Chanel purse she was carrying (that had less than a gram of cocaine inside it) did not belong to her. How do police know that was a lie? Because she posted a Twitpic of the purse on her Twitter feed a few weeks before the arrest with the caption, "Love My New Chanel Purse I Got Today." [More...]

According to MTV:

Under the conditions of the plea agreement obtained by the Review-Journal, Hilton will face a year in jail if she is arrested during her probation for anything besides a minor traffic violation. The heiress is also required to pay a $2,000 fine, complete a substance abuse program and carry out 200 hours of community service.

While the probation will be unsupervised, she will have to complete a substance abuse program and perform 200 hours of community service. There's also a fine of $2,000.00.

The prosecutor sounds angry. Maybe it was the lie. If not, she's being treated much more severely than non-celebrity defendants. As I wrote here, prison was not an option under the original felony charge.

Paris seems to be taking it all in stride. After her court date in Vegas, she'll be off next week to Asia to launch her 2010 Fall/Winter collection of purses, watches and perfume, and open her 7th Paris Hilton Store in Jakarta. (Yes, Paris Hilton really works.)

Maybe I'm just paranoid, but if I were Paris, I'd have body guards around 24/7 for the next year to make sure no one plants something on her. No more unaccompanied visits to pet stores and Apple.

On a related note, Lindsay Lohan tweeted yesterday she failed a drug test and is ready to face the judge and go back to jail if necessary. She points out that drug addiction is a disease.

“Substance abuse is a disease, which unfortunately doesn’t go away over night. I am working hard to overcome it and am taking positive steps…forward every day. I am testing every single day and doing what I must do to prevent any mishaps in the future…This was certainly a setback for me but I am taking responsibility for my actions and I’m prepared to face the consequences.”

Why bother to write about all this? To point out that probation is no walk in the park. When you violate, the judge has fewer sentencing options and may be less inclined to exercise those that avoid jail again. Given the probability of relapse for those with drug dependency issues, before people accept deals offering probation, they should really think through whether they can toe the line for the duration. If drug use were not a crime, but a civil infraction or no offense at all, this could all be avoided. America cannot jail itself out of its drug use problems. Smarter solutions are needed.

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  • Display: Sort:
    How about Twitter trials? (none / 0) (#1)
    by Dadler on Sat Sep 18, 2010 at 12:04:59 PM EST
    Twitter justice for all!

    Seriously, I do love the Chanel purse tweet. Oops.

    and, as always, i second your call... (none / 0) (#2)
    by Dadler on Sat Sep 18, 2010 at 12:07:17 PM EST
    ...to end the destructive nonsense of the drug war. Unfortunately we've got the legal narcotic industrial complex to contend with.

    Someone else twittering (none / 0) (#3)
    by oculus on Sat Sep 18, 2010 at 12:30:09 PM EST
    on her phone?  (Meanwhile, Glenn Greenwald says he was discussing TAP/Kos via Twitter!)

    "Smarter solutions??" (none / 0) (#4)
    by Gerald USN Ret on Sat Sep 18, 2010 at 06:54:04 PM EST
    "Smarter solutions" are needed?  I would say smarter people are needed.

    Drugs are dangerous!  If you have a question about that, just look at how Paris and Lindsay are acting.  They are risking their freedom, their fortune, and their futures.

    If drugs were legalized, then these people would be taking a larger number of risks and even more dangerous risks for themselves and other people.

    We won't solve the "drug problem" by letting these people have more drugs.

    Drugs ain't dangerous General.... (5.00 / 2) (#9)
    by kdog on Sun Sep 19, 2010 at 06:50:03 AM EST
    people are...honestly I don't see how any of our Friday nights change if we end the prohibiton experiment, except for less arrests and prosecutions...everybody who likes drugs is already using them, whether we decide to "let them" or not, and that's leaving aside the question whether society has the right to allow or disallow such things...I don't think we do based on my understanding of inalienable rights.

    We can tilt at windmills for another century, wasting money, practicing tyranny, and destroying families...or we can get serious about limiting any negative societal effects of drug abuse, while allowing responsible drug use as a god given right.


    Gotta disagree (none / 0) (#15)
    by glanton on Mon Sep 20, 2010 at 07:32:58 PM EST
    The criminal drug trade racks up offenseive numbers of body counts each year; our drug policy is, quite arguably, a greater enabler of terrorism than our energy policy.  All the money we waste prosecuting and throwing people in prison, for using drugs, also gives one pause.

    Legalizing marijuana alone would save countless lives and the tax dollars from its sale could go a loooong way towards funding single-payer health care in the United States, without putting us in the red.

    I'm not a libertarian on many issues but the libertarian approach to drugs is the most sensible approach by far.  


    Uh, that's a kind of circular reasoning (none / 0) (#5)
    by Harry Saxon on Sat Sep 18, 2010 at 07:42:21 PM EST
    because without the drug laws in place, she wouldn't have been nor was she in any 'danger' from LEO whatsoever.

    That is not correct. (none / 0) (#6)
    by Gerald USN Ret on Sat Sep 18, 2010 at 09:13:40 PM EST
    Both Lindsay, and Paris and their associates are usually arrested while driving fast powerful vehicles dangerously.  

    Granted in the last arrest of Paris it was her friend that was driving while intoxicated and unable to pass the field sobriety test.

    Now if you were to make the case that Lindsay and Paris should be able to get "drunk," "potted," "spaced out," "high" while only sitting in their dens or living rooms, then you might have a point, but it is a part of the pattern of high risk behavior that these "addicts" get on the highways and endanger the rest of us.

    Personally I think that when they are caught they should be taken right to jail and have to have a trial to get out.


    I disagree (5.00 / 1) (#10)
    by Socraticsilence on Sun Sep 19, 2010 at 08:32:06 PM EST
    at least in this case theres a huge difference between Paris and Lohan- Lohan frankly got off easy after committing something that's far, far to easily punished- DUIs are frankly no different than shooting a handgun in the air during a party.

    In the Paris Hilton case (none / 0) (#7)
    by Harry Saxon on Sat Sep 18, 2010 at 10:54:13 PM EST
    there was no evidence that she was under the influence of cocaine or any other substance, and to base the necessity of drug laws on her arrest isn't quite cricket.

    but it is a part of the pattern of high risk behavior that these "addicts" get on the highways and endanger the rest of us.

    I'd be in favor of tightening the standards for drunk driving as we are a bit loose compared to many nations around the world, and I would be in favor of a similar approach to other drugs besides alcohol as well when someone is driving under the influence as well.


    Idiomatically speaking it seems to be unanimous (none / 0) (#8)
    by CMike on Sat Sep 18, 2010 at 11:52:08 PM EST



    She's been arrested for drugs 2x this year (none / 0) (#11)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Mon Sep 20, 2010 at 12:47:06 PM EST
    for drugs and was popped for DUI in '07.

    At some point, I assume she'll take more control of her life, just like all us adults do.

    Sarcasmo! (none / 0) (#12)
    by glanton on Mon Sep 20, 2010 at 12:50:09 PM EST
    Good to see you're still plugging away on here!

    g-man, where you been? (none / 0) (#13)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Mon Sep 20, 2010 at 12:53:43 PM EST
    Recently moved (none / 0) (#14)
    by glanton on Mon Sep 20, 2010 at 07:28:37 PM EST
    and had a new child, so with two little boys, a lot less time to blog then back in the day :-)

    How have you been?