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'The Simple Life' star Nicole Richie sentenced to four days in jail

By Christopher Rocchio, 07/27/2007 

Two trial postponements apparently gave Nicole Richie all the time she needed to accept her fate.

The Simple Life star pleaded guilty on Friday in a Glendale, CA courthouse to charges stemming from a December arrest for driving under the influence of drugs and alcohol, and as a result, she was sentenced to four days in jail, People reported.  In addition, Richie -- who according to several unconfirmed recent tabloid reports, is three months pregnant -- also agreed to serve a three-year probation term, enroll in an alcohol education program and pay a $2,048 fine.

"Someone could've gotten killed," Los Angeles County Commissioner Steven Lubell told Richie during the brief hearing, People reported.  "You need to understand that driving under the influence is extremely dangerous."

Lubell may have had harsh words for Richie when she finally pleaded guilty Friday, however he'd pretty much been a softy when dealing with her up until then.

The 25-year-old pleaded not guilty to a misdemeanor count of driving under the influence in February, and her trial was originally scheduled to start June 25 until Lubell granted a postponement at the request of Richie's lawyers on June 19. 

During the June 19 hearing, Lubell had told Richie he wouldn't grant any additional delays and insisted she should either get ready for trial or change her plea and accept a deal.  However on July 11 -- the date that the trial's start had been rescheduled to -- he granted Richie another postponement because a drug expert her lawyers had retained to testify on her behalf was going to be out of the country until August 5.  The new postponement had moved the trial's start date to August 16.

Due to a previous DUI conviction from 2003, Richie could have been sentenced up to a year in jail if convicted.

Richie's unconfirmed pregnancy reportedly played no role in the plea agreement.  "That was not discussed and we have no information about that," prosecutor Carolina Lugo told People.

Richie was reportedly given the option of serving her time in a paid city jail, which People described as being a "cushier facility" than a county jail.  While Richie was reportedly given no surrender date, she must complete her sentence by September 28.

When she does arrive in behind bars, Richie will be the second The Simple Life star to serve jail time this year.  Paris Hilton was released from Century Regional Detention Facility in late June after serving 23 days of a 45-day sentence that resulted from parole violations of a September 2006 drunken driving conviction

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