LOS ANGELES—Lindsay Lohan’s journey to jail Friday on a 30-day hold — only to be released hours later — has raised new questions about whether the actress is being treated differently than other inmates.
On Friday morning, Beverly Hills Judge Elden Fox ordered Lohan jailed without bail until a hearing Oct. 22 on whether Lohan should be incarcerated for using drugs in violation of her probation on a drunken-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 both times served less time than ordered because of overcrowding at the women’s jail. Most female inmates serve a quarter of their sentence.
But Lohan’s attorney, Shawn Chapman Holley, immediately challenged the legality of holding her client without bail based on a probation violation for a misdemeanor. On Friday afternoon, another judge granted Lohan $300,000 (U.S.) 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 date for a hearing in 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.
Veteran defense attorney Glen Jonas said the judge’s actions effectively side-stepped the early-release process, which covers inmates sentenced to jail time but not to inmates awaiting sentencing.
“Judge Fox guaranteed Ms. Lohan will not receive early release by setting the hearing a month out with no bail. Judge Fox is fed up. Ms. Lohan is being treated like a drug addict on probation instead of a celebrity” with a drug issue, Jonas said.
But 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 after posting $300,000 bail. She was whisked out of a back door and driven to an undisclosed location.
But 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.