On March 1, 2013, Los Angeles County Superior Court Judge James Dabney refused to delay Lindsay Lohan’s trial pertaining to the charge that she lied to Santa Monica Police when she claimed that she was not driving her Porsche when she rear-ended a truck on Pacific Coast Highway. Furthermore, the judge also advised Lohan that if she continues to use her current criminal defense attorney, Mark Heller, by the March 18 trial date, she would be waiving her right to “competent” counsel under California law. “I am somewhat concerned whether you have sufficient guidance from local counsel,” Judge Dabney told Mr. Heller (who is from New York) after he filed a bill of particulars – a motion that is not used in California criminal procedures. The judge went on to lecture Mr. Heller for 10 minutes on how that motion, amongst others, were incorrect procedures for a California criminal court.
Up until last month Ms. Lohan was represented by Shawn Holley, but Heller took over the case after he represented Ms. Lohan in New York. Judge Dabney rejected Heller’s motion to dismiss and informed him that he had not complied with California law. Under California law, attorneys must file motions to dismiss during the arraignment, Judge Dabney claimed. But that period had long passed. Heller defended himself by claiming that he could not file a motion to dismiss at the arraignment because he was not representing Ms. Lohan at the time. Heller continued by stating that he was only trying to protect Ms. Lohan’s constitutional rights and was unable to determine from the charges if she had made statements at the scene, at the hospital, or to emergency responders.
While the 26-year-old actress did not appear in court, she faces one misdemeanor count of reckless driving, providing false information to an officer, and willfully resisting, obstructing or delaying an officer. In an attempt to avoid trial on the aforementioned charges, as well as violating her probation on a separate shoplifting conviction, Santa Monica city prosecutor Terry White is demanding that the actress spend 90 days in a locked rehab center.
All the misdemeanors have potential jail sentences ranging from three months to a year.
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