|Court Ordered Community Service for Celebrities|
|Posted by Charles Esslinger on Feb 12th, 2013|
Chris Brown skips out on community service:
This just in, Chris Brown is still a jerk. That really shouldn't surprise anyone, considering his long list of public antics (which in the past month alone includes crashing a Porsche into a wall and assaulting fellow R&B singer Franks Ocean). This time Brown is being criticized for skipping out on his court mandated community service.
In a 19 page motion, Los Angeles County prosecutors asked the court to reject Chris Brown's community service. Their reason? According to District Attorney Jackie Lacey, Brown still hasn't provided any “credible, competent, or verifiable” evidence that he ever volunteered. Lacey pointed to the manner in which Brown recorded his service hours, calling it “at best sloppy documentation and at worst fraudulent reporting.” Although prosecutors didn't ask the judge to find Brown in violation of his probation, the R&B star could still face jail time if he fails to fulfill his community service obligations.
Brown's court ordered community service was assigned to him in 2009 after he plead no contest to a felony battery charge. His arrest, which occurred a day before the Grammy Awards, was widely publicized at the time due to the personalities involved. The victim of the battery, who was Brown's girlfriend at the time (and apparently is again now), was celebrity singer Robyn Fenty, who most know as Rihanna.
For his crime, the court sentenced Brown to five years of probation, a year of domestic violence classes, and 180 days of labor oriented community service. In an unusual twist, Judge Patricia Schnegg allowed Brown to perform his community service near his hometown in Virginia. The terms of the deal specified that Brown's community service had to be done under the personal supervision of Richmond Police Chief Bryan Norwood.
Judging by the court motion, it looks like Brown didn't live up to his end of the deal. Investigators found evidence that he didn't complete the 180 days of community service that his lawyer said he did. The little community service he did do certainly wasn't overseen by Police Chief Norwood. Rather, it appears to have been supervised by his mother.
This isn't the first time Brown has broken his probation guidelines. He tested positive for marijuana while in Virginia, though he claimed to have a medical license, and was involved in an altercation with Frank Ocean earlier this year. But when it comes to his community service, Brown's lawyer says his client has done nothing wrong. “Apparently the district attorney's office has completely lost their minds,” said Mark Geragos. “They're making scurrilous, libelous, and defamatory statements and apparently have lost their ability to read their own reports.”
As for what will happen to Brown, we still don't know. At the time this article was written, Judge Schnegg was still considering the motion. If she finds Brown's community service to be fraudulent, it is likely he will be forced to start again from the beginning.
Lucy Lawless avoids jail, gets community service:
Lucy Lawless, of Xena: Warrior Princess fame, recently found herself in a New Zealand courtroom for sentencing. Unlike most celebrities, Lawless wasn't in court because of domestic battery, drug use, or a DUI. She was there to be sentenced for trespassing.
Lawless was arrested with six other Greenpeace activists in February 2012 for illegally boarding the Noble Discoverer. While aboard the oil drilling ship, the group attempted to prevent it from leaving the Port of Taranki for its Arctic destination. Lawless posted about the protest on her blog in realtime, all while sitting atop a 174 foot tower on the Discoverer. The activists camped out on the ship for a total of 77 hours before being forcibly removed by local authorities.
Even though Lawless plead guilty to the trespassing charges last June, she did not show any remorse. “For the first time in my life, I put my body and reputation on the line to stand up for my beliefs and do the right thing,” she said after entering her plea. “I hope I've encouraged other people to do the same.”
Given the charges, Lawless could've received a stiff punishment. She faced up to three years in prison, though that would be unlikely for a first time offender, and $545,000 in reparations to Shell Todd Oil Services. At the end of the day, the sentence Lawless received was significantly less harsh. She was sentenced to 120 hours of community service and ordered to pay a fine of $547 to a port company involved in the trespass. The judge said that Shell was free to pursue reparations in civil court.
Lawless and her Greenpeace companions seemed pretty happy with the outcome. “I consider it a great victory that the court has struck down the reparation demand from Shell, which I think was absolutely insane.” The former warrior princess went on to express a willingness to wash toilets, clean up trash, or do whatever was necessary to complete her community service.
CNN - http://www.cnn.com/2013/02/05/showbiz/chris-brown-probation/?hpt=en_c2
Los Angeles Times -
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