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Dina Lohan gets community service in New York DWI case

Lindsey Lohan's mother, Dina Lohan, was in the news this week when she was sentenced in her New York drunk driving case.

The actresses' mother was arrested for allegedly driving drunk on Long Island last September after celebrating her birthday. She initially pleaded not guilty to driving drunk, but did admit to speeding. She later changed her plea to guilty. On Tuesday, a Nassau County District Court judge sentenced her to 100 hours of community service in addition to suspending her driver's license for one year.

She was also fined more than $3,000 and ordered to participate in a program about drinking and driving.

Dina Lohan, a resident of Merrick, Long Island, had been accused of driving with a blood-alcohol content of more than twice the legal limit. Often a case involving a high blood-alcohol sample like this might result in stiffer penalties. However, the fairly light sentence handed down in this case is not necessarily a reflection of the fame or power of the defendant's daughter.

Dina Lohan's lawyer said that the sentence was appropriate because the arrest marked a "one-time, isolated event that took place on the occasion of her birthday celebration."

In some but not all DWI cases, it is possible to negotiate a relatively lenient sentence if certain factors exist. Elements that may motivate prosecutors and judges to negotiate such deals include first-time offenses as well as low blood-alcohol content, among other things.

In order to resolve a DWI case as favorably as possible, defendants should ensure they consult with a skilled defense attorney. The circumstances of the arrest and a number of additional factors, including criminal history, determine the best way to proceed. In some cases, coming up with an acceptable plea arrangement is the best option. In other cases, it is wise to fight the charges.

Source: Reuters, "Lindsay Lohan's mom loses license for a year after drunken driving," June 3, 2014

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