Lindsay's 'Crime Wave' Costs California Millions

Experts estimate that taxpayers are footing a giant bill
By Nick McMaster,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 21, 2011 2:22 PM CDT
Lindsay Lohan's 'One Woman Crime Wave' Costs California Taxpayers Millions
Lindsay Lohan leaves Bowlmore bowling lanes in Times Square in New York on Friday, March 18, 2011.   (AP Photo/Charles Sykes)

(Newser) – Lindsay Lohan's "one-woman crime wave," as some in LA's legal community have called it, seems like little more than the stuff of tabloids. But there is a dark side, Fox News points out: Experts estimate that the former actress' legal foibles are costing cash-strapped California millions of dollars. Prosecutors, judges, stenographers, clerks, and bailiffs—none of them come cheap. Explains one defense attorney, "If only 100 hours total was spent on her first DUI case out of the Beverly Hills Courthouse, you’re talking about a minimum of $10,000 just in prosecutorial/attorney time alone."

That DUI dates from 2007—since then there has been a second DUI, cocaine possession, driving with a suspended license, numerous probation violations, attacking a Betty Ford staffer, and allegedly stealing jewelry. The total cost to the state? “It has been four years, and we’re talking about quite a few county law enforcement professionals, so it is probably safe to say several million dollars,” says a trial attorney. Should her latest case, in which she allegedly stole a necklace from a Venice Beach jewelry store, go to trial, it could cost California more than $100,000 a day. (Read more Lindsay Lohan stories.)

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