June 8, 2007

"Mom, Mom, Mom.... It's not right."

Paris Hilton sent back to jail.

ADDED: Some description from the Daily News:
Dressed in a gray sweatshirt over slacks, her blond hair pulled back in a ponytail, and wearing no makeup, the spoiled 26-year-old bawled throughout the hearing. She dabbed her eyes, wiped her nose on her sleeve, and her body shook constantly. Several times she turned to look at her parents, who were seated behind her in the courtroom....

"The defendant is remanded to county jail to serve the remainder of her 45-day sentence," he said. "This order is forthwith."

That's when Hilton started screaming.
She's certainly figured out how to maximize the publicity value of going to jail. Didn't Paris Hilton originally find her way into the national consciousness by somehow become the victim of supposedly unintentional publicity?

MORE: The NYT -- which really is classier than the Daily News -- gives us not only more law but more politics. Excerpt:
“She’s a pawn in a turf fight right now,” said Laurie Levenson, a law professor at Loyola Law School Los Angeles. “It backfired against her because she’s a celebrity. She got a harsher sentence because she was a celebrity. And then when her lawyer found a way out of jail, there was too much public attention for it to sit well with the court.”

The struggle between the judge and the Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department, which runs the jail, incited indignation far beyond the attention normally paid to a minor criminal matter.

Judicial and police officials here said they were inundated with calls from outraged residents and curious news media outlets from around the country and beyond. The Rev. Al Sharpton, the civil rights activist, decried Ms. Hilton’s release as an example of “double standards,” saying consideration was given to a pampered rich girl that would never have been accorded an average inmate.

Even the presidential candidate John Edwards found himself drawn into the debate. When asked about Ms. Hilton’s release on Thursday he said, “Without regard to Paris Hilton, we have two Americas and I think what’s important is, it’s obvious that the problem exists.”
"Pawn in a turf fight" is not a mixed metaphor as long as you consider chess a turf fight... which it kind of is. As for John Edwards... ask him a question and he's got an answer: two Americas.

77 comments:

Synova said...

I don't even know what she was arrested for.

stoqboy said...

Mom, Mom, Mom, if only you had enforced some rules on me when I was a child this never would have happened. It's not right.

George said...

I don't even know who Paris Hilton is (other than she's an heir to the Hilton Hotels fortune).

I was in the bank this afternoon. TV was on the wall. CNN was broadcasting her arrival at the courthouse live to a global audience.

Wha-?

The Drill SGT said...

As I understand the issue,

1. The judge had ordered Paris sent to jail for 45 days after she violated her agreed to parole conditions on multiple occasions in multiple ways.

2. That Judge's order directed her to county jail, and explicitly did not allow the use of home detention or pay-jail.

3. she served 72+ hours, which occurred over 5 calendar days, but really only 3 real days. during those 3 days, she was allowed 1 hour of visitors a day and saw her shrink 3 times.

4. apparently she cried herself to sleep and didn't eat much. conditions that are common I suspect to the majority of first time inmates.

5. sounds like she acted out a stress condition and her shrink got her sprung.

6. the Sheriff then, on his own, allowed her "home detention" when the judge had forbidden it.

7. somebody in the city attorney's office decided it was going to be bad for city appearances in front of that and other judges if they brazenly countermanded a judges decision. The city attorney issued an order requesting the sheriff have Paris appear back in front of the judge, who did the "read my lips thing" and sent her back to jail.

not a huge surprise IMHO

Simon said...

After this with Hilton, if Eric Alterman gets indicted today too, drinks are on me. ;)

Bissage said...

The sheriff is named Baca. Here’s his picture.

Baka [is] a powerful man. It would take strong hands to break him.

Say it like Yul Brynner.

Yul be glad you did.

Hazy Dave said...

Holy Moses!

Wade Garrett said...

By now almost everybody has seen Sarah Silverman's bit on Paris Hilton, but if not, here's the link.

The Drill SGT said...

two clarifying points

1. I said Sheriff and city attorney when I should be saying sheriff's office and attorney's office, etc.

2. I don't understand the city/county jurisdiction issues in LA. I know it was the sheriff, which is a county title. I thought it was city attorney, but guess it could be county attorney, etc

Emy L. Nosti said...

Is it wrong to feel good about this? I can't help myself.

The Drill SGT said...

bad link on your page wade

Revenant said...

This really is a Stewart-like miscarriage of justice. Americans do like to throw a rich person to the wolves every year or two, though; I guess it helps the middle class feel better about itself.

Dave said...

I don't usually watch Fox, but I was checking the market news (hadn't seen a thing all day as I was actually attending to academic work) and saw Shep Smith and a judge and a lawyer and Geraldo Rivera. It was non-illuminating, for most part, and way too full of arguing.

The judge was pretty good in saying that the original order (of incarceration) was probably out of line compared to what usually happens in such circumstances in that jurisdiction, but that the sheriff and the Hilton family stepped way over the line and the trial judge's response wasn't unexpected.

Shep was all but wallowing in how much fun it was to see Hilton humilated, but Rivera was almost worse in his continued insistence of what a horrible miscarriage of justice this is, and how Hilton was treated 'unfairly' due to her celebrity status.

Rivera used the usual semantic arguing to try to turn her repeated violations of the voluntary probation terms and her lame excuses into some sort of gross violation of something.

She got repeated breaks until the end. Her last violation was only reported as 'driving without a license' and 'driving at nights without headlights on' at 90 MPH. Pardon me? Shouldn't the proper ticket be for grossly endangering others? And was she driving without a license or headlights at night at 90 MPH because she was stupid or high?

C'mon. Give me a break. Even our idiot system eventually pushes back.

The Drill SGT said...

Emy, I find my self feeling sorry for the other 10,000 inmates this year who cried themselves to sleep but aren't millionaires.

Rev, I generally agree with you, but part ways on both Paris and Martha. Martha was a director of the NYSE, and as such needed to be above reproach. I think it was obvious she got insider info, she took it, profited from it, lied about it and paid a price. The fact that she was an officer of a major corporation and an director of the NYSE was the issue, not that she was a public personality on TV

The Drill SGT said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
The Drill SGT said...

Sing it out Dave, Praise the Lord! :)

Wade Garrett said...

Thanks for the catch! I've fixed the link.

The highlight: "She is totally going to get special treatment. In fact, I've heard that, to make her more comfortable in prison, the guards are going to paint the bars to look like penises. I'm just afraid she'll break her teeth on those things."

Jeff said...

Rev, what in the world are you talking about?

Emy L. Nosti said...

I'm with you there, Drill Sgt. And I'd love to know exactly what she meant when she said "it's not right." That money can't buy everything? That she's too special for such treatment? Still, I'm more enjoying that she's been knocked off her high horse than that justice was done--guess that bothers me. Oh well, there are worse things and I'll be able to sleep tonight!

The Drill SGT said...

an AP report that pretty much matches my view of what the judge would say

fascinating that the Sheriff intevened again to give her more special treatment to "phone in to her hearing" LOL

Maxine Weiss said...

Here's the kicker: Before Feb. 27th she was a free-agent. Busted for DUI, and yet there was nothing she had to do. She didn't have to pay a fine, she didn't have to perform community service, she had no sentence. All this Gal had to do was simply OBEY ALL LAWS.....

How difficult is that? She was on a simple probabtion for 90 days, didn't even have to meet with a probabtion officer....just don't get stopped by the police...

And she couldn't even do that much.

Even after she was stopped on Feb. 27...they were still lenient with her. They wanted her to go to classes, which she refused to show up at.

At every point, they tried to give her a chance.

How difficult is it to not get stopped by the police? How difficult is it to just obey all laws?

Revenant said...

I think it was obvious she got insider info, she took it, profited from it, lied about it and paid a price.

See, when the government dogpiles a bunch of lawyers and investigators onto someone looking for evidence of wrongdoing and can't actually FIND any, I tend not to think that it is "pretty obvious" that they broke the law. But whether it was "pretty obvious" or not, the fact remains that the justice system is not supposed to punish people for "pretty obvious" wrongdoing that they haven't actually been convicted of.

The fact that she was an officer of a major corporation and an director of the NYSE was the issue, not that she was a public personality on TV

The interviews with the jurors indicated a desire to punish her for being successful.

The Drill SGT said...

Maxine, when you're driving down the road at night @ 90 plus with your lights off in a Mercedes-Benz SLR McLaren, with 617HP and a $500,000 price tag, most cops will give you a second glance at least.

Revenant said...

And I'd love to know exactly what she meant when she said "it's not right."

That she got 45 days for behavior you or I would have gotten 48 hours for.

That money can't buy everything?

There are lots of things that money can't buy. Such as, in this case, justice.

Revenant said...

Busted for DUI, and yet there was nothing she had to do. She didn't have to pay a fine, she didn't have to perform community service, she had no sentence.

She had to pay a fine, as well as attend the usual brainwashing classes, so the claim that she "didn't have to do anything" is bullshit. Her sentence was entirely normal for the crime she was convicted of (which was not DUI). What is not normal in any way is a 45-day sentence for violating probation.

Jennifer said...

Revenant - She was arrested for DUI. In the initial hearings, the charge was reduced to reckless driving, in an attempt at leniency. Then she was caught driving with a suspended license, given a warning which she had to sign, acknowledging that she was not allowed to drive, in an attempt at leniency. Then she was caught driving in excess of double the speed limit, at night without her lights on and was not charged with an additional crime, but instead a violation of her probation, in an attempt at leniency. She also missed the deadline for her "brainwashing classes" as you call them. She also showed up late to numerous court dates and gave the judge attitude throughout the process.

How many breaks is she supposed to get?

Fen said...

She got repeated breaks until the end. Her last violation was only reported as 'driving without a license' and 'driving at nights without headlights on' at 90 MPH. Pardon me? Shouldn't the proper ticket be for grossly endangering others? And was she driving without a license or headlights at night at 90 MPH because she was stupid or high?

Agreed. Thats something I see alot that I find infuriating: level 7 [of 10] offense reduced to level 5 by ticketing officer, then plea-bargained out to level 3, with good behavior or some shinanigan reducing it to a frivolous punishment. This woman had been given way too many breaks by authorities, but can lodge a valid complaint of excessive punishment because the ticketing officer didn't write her up for reckless endangerment.

Would anyone here want her free and driving around in your neighborhood at night?

Jackie said...

This post should totally be labeled "comedy."

Smilin' Jack said...

It's not right.

Well, this in-jail/out-of-jail/back-in-jail nonsense shows there's something "not right" about L.A. "justice." Which is really surprising considering how well they handled O.J.

The Drill SGT said...

Revenant said...She had to pay a fine, as well as attend the usual brainwashing classes, so the claim that she "didn't have to do anything" is bullshit.

actually no. she was supposed to attend brainwashing classes, but failed to do so, that was one of the aggravating factors in the jail sentence.

blake said...

My understanding of the facts is close to what Jennifer has stated, in which case, I think she's been treated way more leniently than I would have been. (The cops'd probably have beaten me senseless at some point.) If Rev is right than that changes things. (I don't know, I'm following it as little as possible--which is a surprisingly large amount sadly.)

But the Martha Stewart thing seems completely unfair. "We can't prove you did anything wrong, but we can convince people you're lying about something." Not really a good way to run a legal system.

Jeff said...

Well Rev, its entirely possible I am incorrect about this, but its my understanding she blew off the classes (which I totally agree are a waste of time, brainwashing would be the correct term for them) and kept driving under a suspended license. If you or I got a DUI and blew off the class and kept getting caught driving, we would be doing the 45 days. Not 48 hours. Now if I am wrong and she did attend the class and she wasnt driving on a suspended license then yes, the 45 days is way too much. BTW, getting pulled over in this state driving on a suspended license will get you arrested and brought before a judge. That apparently didnt happen when she got pulled over.

LordSomber said...

"Baka" in Japanese = "fool"

Curtiss said...

She's in jail, because she pissed off a judge.

P. Rich said...

And, she can vote.

Fen said...

I'm just glad she's off the street. I'm on the other side of the continent from her, but ya never know.

And yes, Jennifer's 4:16 post is a good summary of how many "final" warnings she's been given.

The Drill SGT said...

I'm not going back to google the whole saga again, but here is a summary I did when Ann originally posted on Paris (note, amended)

The Drill SGT said...
I think the sentence was appropriate.

As I understand the facts:

1. she was arrested in Sep on DWI and plead no contest, was on probation, had her license suspended and was required to take a class.

2. She failed to take the required class. she failed to stop driving.

3. shortly after sentencing, in Jan, she was caught driving with her license suspended. she signed a statement acknowledging this fact, and was told not to drive.

(apparently she was stopped a 4th time and just given a warning, after noting her license was suspended)

4. 6 weeks later she was caught again additionally charged with violating probation

her mother laughed in court when the lawyer requested jail time?

this girl is out of control, she has access to great legal talent and counseling, but doesn't get it. the people that raised her failed in their jobs, her lawyers failed to advise their client.

she is going to hurt somebody and the judge is trying to send her a wake up message that money and celebrity doesnt give you a free pass. somebody needs to teach her that.

lock her up.

next time make it 6 months.

Fen said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Fen said...

Not to divert but just curious, since we have so many legal minds here.

If Paris [after getting so many breaks from LA enforcement] had run over and killed me, would my family be able to sue the city for some kind of negligence? Get the officers in question fired?

Pogo said...

1. She should have gotten 45 days for DUI in the first place. The rest of the downgradings make a mockery of the offense, and creates the basis for her claim of excessive punishment.

2. Whether a reasonable sentence or not, her parents have clearly failed her. She is unable to escape prison precisely because she learned from them that she never had to take any responsibility for her actions. Her tearful breakdown exposed a young who just had her worldview radically altered. Mommy, the world doesn't work the way I thought it did. I actually feel sorry for her, somewhat, for being a 3-year-old in an adult's body.

3. Stewart and Libby are examples of unrestrained prosecutors who can destroy you, even when no actual offence is committed except lying. It's like the Soviet system: they can always find anyone guilty of something. And that's how they keep control.

Curtiss said...

fen: I'm not a lawyer, but I think the answer is that a lawsuit against the city of Los Angeles would not be successful. But your family could sue the hell out of Paris and her insurer.

They may even have deeper pockets.

Fen said...

Hilton's mother was later seen pacing the hallways, telling reporters, "I'm paralyzed right now." Paris' father Rick is still in the courtroom.

No dearie, your daughter's next victim is the one who would be paralyzed. I wish we could throw the two of you in jail with her.

Jennifer said...

Fen and Pogo - I definitely agree with you that her parents are a huge part of her problem. But the majority of the responsibility lies with her. Her sister is nowhere near the walking entitlement cesspool she is. Her brother's fate remains to be seen.

downtownlad said...

Yawn. She only gets this attention, because we the public pay attention.

It's time to stop.

Dave F said...

Had an acquaintance who knew her when she was in high school in Manhattan. Acquaintance said something like, "You know, this girl's so sheltered, she just doesn't understand how the world works."

Which is probably prescient given the situation in which she now finds herself. Kind of pathetic, really, when you consider that the majority of kids born to wealthy and/or famous parents learn from an early age that theirs is an image that needs to be beyond reproach.

(Before someone jumps on this comment and says "Yeah, but remember Rich person/celebrity X's kid who did Y and Z"?, consider that such cases are the relative minority. Most people--rich or poor, famous or unknown--remain out of trouble with the law.)

Dave F said...

Paris should be happy she only got 45 days. Murder an abusive husband and you get 60 days.

Both women done in by naivete and immaturity. Really says something for the feminist cause, no?

Peter Palladas said...

All this fuss over driving a frigging car? Did she hit anyone, knock them down, wreck their lives? I think not.

So she was driving under the influence? Big frigging deal. What else is a 'celebrity' for but to get smashed, have a video taken of getting laid, do some dodgy other stuff and then proclaim they've found The Cure and/or The Lord?

Smarten up girl, this is a serious career move you are jeopardising here. Think the movie rights. Think the see-leb TV deals - "I done bad, but now I give my soul to dying people across the world."

Who is Paris Hilton anyway? Never heard of her. Stayed there once. Room service was lousy and the bed sheets were not the black satin I expect from the French.

Fen said...

All this fuss over driving a frigging car? Did she hit anyone, knock them down, wreck their lives?

Not yet...

B said...

dtl (above) has this one pegged right.

boston70 said...

Please Ann, I beg of you, tell us this will be your only Paris Hilton piece. I took the day off from work and flipped on the news a couple of times during the day and this "news story" was wall to wall coverage on every channel. Every now and then the news would say oh yea, Cheney is going in for surgery, Pace resigned, some other more important story and then bam-they would immediately cut away to let us know Paris was crying.

Did any of you get a glimpse of some of those people around the television newscasters outside the court house with the signs saying, "Free Paris". There was this old guy that literally had his mouth open and seemed seriously devastated she was going back to jail. Some of them were crying and screaming that she was going back to jail. I thought it might be some actors from some comedy sketch but I actually think these were real citizens who actually cared. What does this kind of trash say about us as a country?

Internet Ronin said...

Almost everyone I know who got a DUI had driven drunk far more times than the single instance. It is obvious from her statements to the court that Hilton drove after being told her license was suspended, and probably every day at that. (BTW, 90 MPH is what California law calls "reckless driving" - one small step short of DUI in the motor vehicle hierarchy of dangerous behavior. In fact, IIRC, the cops can take you straight to jail for that if they want to, instead of writing a ticket).

While I wholeheartedly agree with Revenant about Stewart, and partially about Libbey, I disagree about Hilton:

She was arrested and convicted of DUI. Her license was suspended. She was ordered to go to school. She failed to appear at school. She continued to drive without a license. She was ticketed twice during that time, once for reckless driving. These are repeated deliberate violations of her probation. She failed to appear in court at the time named, demonstrated veiled contempt for the proceedings, no remorse for her actions, and failed to accept responsibility for those actions. That's enough to get some jail time, whether or not she was rich and famous. Maybe not 45 days in all, but jail time nonetheless.

Obviously, the parents have influence with the sheriff, and they thought they could get her out, and did. Now THAT is a difference between THEM and the rest of us peons in California - we could NEVER arrange that farce. Just as obviously, the judge was not amused. Had the Hiltons not used their influence, little Paris would probably have been free to go after a week to 10 days. Not going to happen now, unless she attempts suicide.

ricpic said...

I wouldn't kick it outta bed (if I could get it inta bed first...which I couldn't).

Ann Althouse said...

52 comments! What the hell are your people talking about???

Peter Palladas said...

What the hell are your people talking about???

A butterfly broken on a wheel.

Curtiss said...

Heh. Busted.

The Drill SGT said...

Ann Althouse said...
52 comments! What the hell are your people talking about???


Crime and punshment

beauty, sex, and celebrity

Noblesse Oblige

California Law

California Justice (different from above)

Judges who don't like to be Diss'd by the Sheriff

Sheriffs that can be bought

Mothers who should be jailed

10,000 prisoners that cried themselves to sleep the first night in the LA lockup

a few more items, Martha Stewart, Hot cars, and Scooter Libby, among them.

EnigmatiCore said...

"All this fuss over driving a frigging car? Did she hit anyone, knock them down, wreck their lives? I think not. "

Let's do away with all drunk driving laws!

It won't increase drunk driving, because the idea of deterrence has been proven to not work, right?

Let all those drunks drive without fear. Only those who actually hurt someone should be prosecuted!

On the other hand, maybe I am being sarcastic and think that Hilton deserves what she got, if not worse.

Bruce Hayden said...

Ann,

Is this why you don't blog more about Paris Hilton? Almost 60 posts in just a couple of hours.

LoafingOaf said...

I never much liked Paris Hilton. Didn't hate her either. But was somewhat annoyed that the media made her a big celebrity for no apparent reason.

But the effed up American justice system has now made me feel sorry for Paris Hilton.

Why is this woman going through all this when she never actually hurt anyone and never actually committed a serious/violent crime?

I'm not too impressed with people going on about how evil drunk driving is. My understanding is that her blood alcohol was well below .1%, so how drunk could she have been? Not more of a hazard on the roads than the countless drivers in morning rush hour, operating vehicles after only getting 3 or 4 hours of sleep. Which is not to say there should be no consequences for what she did, just that her conseuqences should fit the "crime," the crime should not be defined by radical special interest groups like MADD, and she should not face consequences harsher than any other citizen would be subjected to under similar circumstances.

I know people who have gotten first-time DUIs with higher BAC than PAris had. They had to go to a hotel for a weekend and sit through some education lectures, certainly not over a month in jail.

My hope is that Paris Hilton gets through this, manages to keep her chin up, and then is more successful than ever in the aftermath. I hope PAris gets the last laugh on all of you who are so gung-ho about locking up someone just because her celebrity annoyed you.

LoafingOaf said...

Let's do away with all drunk driving laws!

It won't increase drunk driving, because the idea of deterrence has been proven to not work, right?

Let all those drunks drive without fear. Only those who actually hurt someone should be prosecuted!



The people I worry the most about are the people who are plastered, not mildly impaired. Particularly repeat-offenders who drive plastered.

I don't think people should drive a car when they are impaired at all. Which includes talking on cell phones, not getting enough sleep, doing their make-up in the car, or whatever. I'm a very safe driver. I'm pretty much the only one of the roads who actually observes the posted speed limits, for example, so I'm pretty sure there's very few people who can preach to me about driving (it's reasonable to speculate that most people in this thread violate traffic laws every single day).

I get flipped off regularly for observing the traffic laws.

But let's be honest here. At some point, when you keep lowering the BAC that gets you tossed in the slammer, the laws wind up hurting more people than they help. Was Paris even actually DRUNK on the roads? Impaired, perhaps, but I see no evidence she was a major threat to society. Certainly not deserving over a month in jail.

LoafingOaf said...

I get flipped off regularly for observing the traffic laws.

Not only do I get flipped off a lot for observing traffic laws, but I sometimes wonder if I'm actually presenting a hazrd on the roads, given how frequently people drive with their front bumpers about 3 inches from my rear bumper when I observe the speed limit.

Anyway, Paris may be a lot of things, but I've seen nothing she's done that warrants over a month behind bars. America is too gung-ho about locking people up, and she is being punished more than the rest of us would be simply because she's famous.

Dave said...

Lately a repeated meme here is that "she didn't hurt anybody." Unfortunately, the best statistics I've seen show that an outsized proportion of automobile accidents, and especially fatalities, are caused by people with repeatd DWI infractions.

The very best preventative seems to be very harsh treatment for a first offense. While this doesn't necessarily deter the truly hard core, it does evidently deter those capable of being deterred. (I know, I know, that's tautological, but the point is that all *some* people need is a wakeup call.)

Those of you who are currently feeling very sorry for Hilton, will you step up and help the victims when she finally does 'hurt' or even kill someone with her driving, or will you excuse that, too?

It's not about her or her celebrity, really, it's about whether or not laws have meaning or consequences. If not, please let me know, so I can benefit, too.

Seven Machos said...

When I was in eighth grade, I was busted for writing some pretty sordid notes with a girl in my civics class. We each got three detentions. I served mine, and that was the end of it.

The girl never showed up for her three detentions. So, she got more. And more. And she never really took it seriously. Finally, she got suspended for a few days.

The same principle at work in the mind of the assistant principal of my junior high is at work in the minds of the judge and prosecutor here.

Kirk said...

Ann,

"52 comments! What the hell are your people talking about???"

Admit it--you wrote this post just so you could use the label "celebritneys" again, didn't you? :-)

hdhouse said...

i surmise "laughingoafs" moniker is apt. her license was suspended. it wasn't her free speech or right to arms, but her priv. of carrying a drivers license.

the suspension came for DUI. As part of her agreement with the State, she wouldn't drive. She wouldn't drink and drive.

She did it once and violated her probation and then did it again and the judge gave her a minimum.

What about laws and courts and probation don't you get?

victimless? she violated an agreement with the State. The State, if no one or nothing else, is the victim. That we have to hear about poor Paris only adds to it.

She frequents the Hamptons and draws crowds. There was a little issue 2 summers ago when she wanted traffic restricted to "local only" on a street where she was staying. She went to a nightclub where she was paid to appear but only after the walkins were screen for physical characteristics so her picture wouldn't be accidentally taken around average looking folks. She got into a scrape at a 7-11 because she didn't think she would have to pay.

Frankly they can't take her off the streets fast or long enough.

Bissage said...

"Two Americas" makes about as much sense as "Celebrity Justice." This must be a new branch of the law because they didn't teach it back when I went to law school. Maybe it was a seminar or something.

Professor Levenson gives good quote but she was irresponsible. Pawn? Okay, I get it. Hilton's rights were sacrificed. But for what, turf? That means judicial ego, right? It's not as if the judge and the Sheriff are fighting for budget allocation or office space.

But here are some questions. Was the sentence illegal? Was it an abuse of discretion? Did the judge enunciate his raw envy of Hilton's celebrity as a factor in support of the sentence? The answers are, of course, no, no and no.

So why the gratuitous attack on the sentence? Why the advocacy? Is Professor Levenson simply giving away free samples?

"Celebrity Justice." It's really just a banner for demagoguery in the service of cynical money grubbing, isn't it?

The Drill SGT said...

Ann,

I for one like an occasional Paris post. It breaks up the usual lineups. For example, when hdhouse is talking about Paris, he a lot less angry and makes more sense than when he writes about Bush. On the other hand Revenant ends up on the opposite side.

Anyway, more of these "social justice" posts please.

Fewer Breasts though. They generally seem to draw an ugly crowd. Jeri was good... But then again she has GOP breasts so they can be the subject of scorn or delight. Just don't write about Democratic Breasts or Black Breasts, or heaven forbid Rosie's

Ann Althouse said...

Drill: Just wait for the new Bloggingheads episode. It's breasts, breasts, breasts.

Maxine Weiss said...

Early on....she signed an agreement with the Court stating she was not to drive.

She violated that agreement.

She signed an agreement with the Court accepting probation and to obey all laws while on probabtion.

She violated that agreement.

She then willingly, and without appeal---agreed to surrender to serve out her sentence in Jail.

She violated that agreement by finagling a house arrest deal.

An "average" person, by this time, would be thrown in Jail indefinately. I'm serious---under the 3-strikes law, they'd have thrown away the key by now.

How many times can one jerk the chain of a Judge, and thumb her nose at a Court, before it comes home to roost?

They've been more than lenient with her.

If you make an agreement with the Court, you'd better live up to it.

The Drill SGT said...

I'm still on the topic of her really bad lawyers. among their failings:

1. not making it perfectly clear what the steps were to comply with the original sentence

2. not getting her to the first court appearance on time, in appropriate uniform

3. not briefing her and impressing on her, what the best public persona to use at the courtroom. e.g "Yes Sir, No Sir, won't happen again Sir. I'm really Sorry, I screwed up Sir." After all, even the cheapest shyster defending the worst pimp, is smart enough to brief his client and his client is smart enough to listen. Not Paris. Her defense was, "I don't read things, I pay people to read things"

4. once the lawyers and the shrink had her sprung from jail, and they knew that there was a court appearance at 0900 on Friday, see rule 2, they failed by 2 hours in getting her to the court room. anybody else would have gotten 30 more days after sending deputies out to get her and a 2 hour delay.

Papa should bring in another legal team. I'm sure he is represented by at least 10 firms with LA offices.

LoafingOaf said...

maxine weis: An "average" person, by this time, would be thrown in Jail indefinately. I'm serious---under the 3-strikes law, they'd have thrown away the key by now.

"Throw away the key" for someone in jail over such a minor and common offense as driving with a suspended license?

According to commentary in the news, there's not a single other case of a person in LA County who had to serve more than 2 or 3 days for a similar offense. If this judge sentenced Paris more harshly because she is a celebrity, he's a worse person than Paris.

And I hope you're asking your taxes to be raised to build more jails and prisons, because all the people driving under suspended licenses fill the traffic courts each week. Maybe you want the USA to surpass China as the country with the most citizens locked up in cages.

Why anyone would want non-violent citizens without criminal records who commit a minor traffic offense to be packed into our overcrowded and ill-run jails and prisons for extensive stays - where, under the State's care, people get abused and harmed on a regular basis - is beyond me.

But keep calling for a harsher system that locks up an ever-expanding number of citizens committing minor offenses and sooner or later someone you care about will get caught up in the criminal system and we'll see if you still think their life should be wrecked over minor stuff.

----

Hdhouse:

You can keep asking me about what I don't get. What about MINOR TRAFFIC OFFENSE do you not get? You all can hype it up all you want, but driving with a suspended license is still just driving with a suspended license.

Oh, I see. You conclude your post by going over some of the things the spoiled celebrity did over the years that bugged you. I'm not sure how what she did to irk you in the Hamptons, or your jealousy over her being paid to hang out in nightclubs, adds to your points outside of exposing your willingness to go along with the unique and unusual excessiveness of this judge.

If you're mad about Paris' celebrity and our culture of celebrity worship in general, your anger should be directed at all the people buying People Magazine.

LoafingOaf said...

once the lawyers and the shrink had her sprung from jail, and they knew that there was a court appearance at 0900 on Friday, see rule 2, they failed by 2 hours in getting her to the court room.

According to the coverage I saw last night, she apparently had an excuse for being late yesterday. I forget the details. Something about running into complexities due to the paparazzi and getting trapped behind a gate for a bit. The coverage I saw presented as something she had zero control over, but I dunno. I don't know enough to know whether I buy that excuse, I just don't think it was that she hit the snooze button on her clock radio. You're aware that the media is offering half a million dollars to anyone who can manage to get a pic of her in custody?

IOW, with the circus that is our celebrity culture and the other circus that is the LA County justice system, it might be kinda hard to just drive to court and be on time.

My guess is she's gonna get sprung again in a matter of days. I hope she calms down, does not have serious medical problems, keeps her chin up, and enjoys the last laugh on all those who delight in her trauma.

Fen said...

Loafing Oaf: Hdhouse: You can keep asking me about what I don't get. What about MINOR TRAFFIC OFFENSE do you not get?

Geez Loaf, I thought your posts were sarcasm. You're really defending her?

According to the coverage I saw last night, she apparently had an excuse for being late yesterday. I forget the details. Something about running into complexities due to the paparazzi

And making excuses for her? If you had her experience with the paparazzi, wouldn't you adjust your schedule to arrive earlier, esp for something as important as an appearance in court?

Oh, I see. You conclude your post by going over some of the things the spoiled celebrity did over the years that bugged you

Bugged him? Are you still ignoring all the "second" chances and "final" warnings that woman got? Here it is again:

She was arrested and convicted of DUI. Her license was suspended. She was ordered to go to school. She failed to appear at school. She continued to drive without a license. She was ticketed twice during that time, once for reckless driving. These are repeated deliberate violations of her probation. She failed to appear in court at the time named, demonstrated veiled contempt for the proceedings, no remorse for her actions, and failed to accept responsibility for those actions. That's enough to get some jail time, whether or not she was rich and famous.

Loaf, if its no big deal, then you wouldn't mind Paris runnung her JAg through your neighborhood streets, drunk or stoned, headlights off, at 90mph?

John Stodder said...

Is it yet proven that Paris' parents actually intervened with Sheriff Baca to get her sprung from her first imprisonment, or is Baca's story that his department acted on their own in the face of an apparent "life-threatening" medical problem holding up?

Baca is an elected official. Somewhere on Paris' "legal team" there are surely some well-connected lawyers who raise money for sheriff's candidates. Baca himself was originally elected as an anti-establishment candidate, so he knows he's not secure.

But thus far I've seen no indication of a Paris rep's call to Baca that resulted in her getting out.

Ann, there is actually an issue here, although it's more local, probably too local for this blog. Judges in LA County routinely see their sentences circumvented by the Sheriff's department, largely due to overcrowding in the jails. For a number of reasons, we in this country have decided a lot more people belong in jail than in previous eras, but the incarceration infrastructure has not kept pace. This means a lot of decisions are being made by people who don't really have the authority.

Paris' case shed a light on this heretofore unreported problem. The media in LA generally pays no mind when criminals sentenced to six months serve 10 days. Now it's a public issue, and, for now at least, the political power has shifted over to the judges. How that plays out will actually matter to a lot of people besides Paris Hilton.

The Drill SGT said...

John Stodder said...
Is it yet proven that Paris' parents actually intervened with Sheriff Baca to get her sprung from her first imprisonment,


I understand that she was there 3 days and was allowed visitors 1 hour each day and saw her shrink 3 times. I think its was the shrink angle more than the lawyer angle that was the conduit to Baca. or at least the rationale.

Stephen said...

Anyone want to try to be human about this?
First, the driving on a suspended license is not so clear cut. Her license was actually restricted to driving to and from job activities or for medical treatment. Pretty common deal.
She got popped driving back from a video rental store where she'd rented movies by a director who had recently cast her in a movie. Kind of a stretch but then again what other "work" does she do?
The judge didn't buy the stretch. OK.
She's been a brat and a snot throughout this thing.
She's not the first brat or snot this judge has ever encountered yet she's the only one he's ever sentenced this harshly.
The judge and sheriff together have given the girl a case of emotional whiplash. Over a misdemeanor. Is that what the criminal justice system is designed to do?
Remember, when the time came for Paris to go to jail she did not cry. She thought it sucked but she went to jail - early.
When LA officials started jerking her around, about where her body could and could not be, for no really good reason, she snapped a little. And she cried about it.

I'm more concerned about public officials behaving badly and doing unwarranted damage to citizens than I am about snotty bratty heiresses.

All things considered, of course she should have gone to jail.
She did.

Rich V. said...

Guys, she got off easy, in Florida, most 1st time DUI offenders get 120 hours community service, 6 months in gaol, and a fine...as well as classes.

2nd offense is much tougher, 1 year in gaol and a larger fine.

3rd offense is 3 years...

Now, she was put on probation and ordered to go to classes and NOT drive...coulnd't do either...mommy and daddy used "influence" to get her out of jail early...that sort of thing pisses off judges...

Paris dear, if you can't do the time, don't do the crime...tough sh*t baby, you have to pay the price for your own stupidity. You are an adult now, and are responsible for EVERYTHING YOU DO AND EVERYTHING YOU SAY...or DON'T DO!!!!