Why Isn’t Lindsay Lohan in Jail? and Other Burning Questions

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Lindsay Lohan Jeffrey Mayer/WireImage

At 7:15 a.m. on Thursday, Lindsay Lohan was released from police custody following her latest run-in with the law: being arrested and charged with assault after allegedly punching a woman in a Manhattan nightclub hours earlier. The police drama comes days after yet another failed comeback – the feedback on her acting in “Liz & Dick” wasn’t kind – and despite her proclamations that she wants “to be known as an actress, not a troubled starlet,” as she told Us Weekly last week, frankly, it’s impossible to believe her. So as we watched the 26-year-old “Mean Girls” star being escorted by NYPD officers to her waiting car after she was released this morning – with a jacket over her head and the slit in her dress unzipped to her waist – and heard that additional charges have now been filed against her in California, many questions came to mind.

Why isn’t she in jail? Lindsay is still on informal probation for her 2011 misdemeanor grand theft conviction. In addition to this new assault charge (for which she received a desk appearance ticket for a future date), three more charges were filed today in relation to her June car crash in Los Angeles. Those charges are: 1) giving false information to police, 2) obstructing or resisting a police officer, and 3) reckless driving. So why isn’t the 26-year-old in the slammer, like, right this minute? The Los Angeles County Probation Department had to wait for these new charges to be filed, which will now trigger a probation violation case against her. So her legal battle ahead is a doozy, including these four new charges plus the probation violation.

“What will likely happen is they will file a probation violation case against her and what that does is stop her probation clock,” explains Los Angeles attorney Elana Goldstein of Goldstein Legal Office. “So if she is on probation for three years and they file the case against her today, the judge will revoke her probation and stop the clock until they figure out how to proceed. So ultimately, not only is she facing jail time in the probation violation, her probation end date will also be extended.”

However, the bottom line is it that if she does get sentenced to jail time – and it’s likely she will – it probably will not be a significant amount. Let’s not forget than when she did time in 2007 for two driving under the influence charges, she spent only 84 minutes in the Lynwood, California, jail. “I think she will certainly be sentenced to do time – they take probation violations seriously,” Goldstein tells omg!. “Will she actually do it? I don’t think she’ll do very much. Not only do we have an overcrowding problem, but we especially have an overcrowding problem in terms of females in L.A. County. They don’t have space for low-level offenders and especially low-level offenders who are female. It’s my understanding that if you get less than 90 days on a misdemeanor, you usually do about one night or two nights – that’s it.” And she’s not getting special treatment because she’s a celebrity. “A lot of people think because she’s Lindsay Lohan she only has to do one night in jail. The reality is all my clients are doing the same thing. If she only did a night or two, she’s not getting special treatment.”

What was she doing on Wednesday night? Before Lindsay allegedly punched 28-year-old Tiffany Mitchell in the face, she attended a Justin Bieber concert. She was photographed smiling having a good time … and she appeared to have VIP seating. "I love all of my fans and @justinbieber @thewanted fans!!!" she tweeted from the show. "Thank you so much for putting a smile on my face!! Lots of love." She also tweeted that she was with artist Ryan Norris, AEG tour promoter Matt Granger, and AEG employee Jon Baden. (Another concertgoer also tweeted that they had spotted Lindsay’s sister, Ali, tagging along as well.) It was after the concert ended that the actress headed to the Chelsea nightclub Avenue where she punched Mitchell. She was arrested at 4 a.m.

Why were they fighting? According to TMZ, the fight started over Max from the boy band The Wanted, who opened for Bieber and Lohan referenced in her tweet. The website reports, “Max was turned off by the fact LiLo was sloppy drunk inside the club … this according to sources at the club.” No word on how that involved Mitchell, who is reportedly married. Mitchell went to the police station earlier Thursday morning, but reportedly won’t be charged with any crime. When she was photographed leaving, she did not appear to have any facial bruising. She was also holding the hand of a male companion.

Is there a new mug shot? Lindsay has her own gallery of mug shots at this point, stemming back to her first arrest in May 2007, but her collection won’t grow – at least not publicly – with her arrest today in Manhattan. A spokesperson for the NYPD tells omg! that even if she had her mug shot taken today, it won’t be released to the public. The only time they release mug shots in New York City is if they are searching for a perpetrator. However, when she is booked on charges for her three crimes stemming from the car accident, she will have to pose for a new mug shot as well.

Where are her parents? Lindsay’s father has already spoken out about his daughter’s arrest, of course! He told “Entertainment Tonight” that this whole situation could have been avoided if his ex-wife, Dina Lohan, had participated in his attempted intervention with Lindsay last month. "I told you exactly what would happen and was trying to get Dina on board with me for a long time, but especially the last two weeks," Lohan told ET. "If she had, I wish to God she would stop and resolve things with us to do the same for our children." He added: "It's really sad that the same good people are always there for her and the ones that care are the ones she hurts the most. She is in a dark place, it's in God's hands and I hope he deals with her appropriately." Dina has yet to comment.

No word from Camp Lohan either. omg! has reached out to her agent, publicist, and lawyer for comment, but they are keeping quiet for now.

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