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January 16, 2018

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Judge closes out Paris Hilton’s Las Vegas drug case

Attorney provides proof she completed requirements of informal probation


Steve Marcus / File photo

Paris Hilton waits in the courtroom at the Regional Justice Center in Las Vegas on Sept. 20, 2010, when she pleaded guilty to charges stemming from her arrest for cocaine possession. Hilton wasn’t in court Tuesday morning when a judge closed out her case.

After paying a fine, attending drug counseling sessions and doing more than the amount of community service required — including picking up dog feces and painting over graffiti — Paris Hilton is back in good standing with the law in Las Vegas.

Satisfied Hilton had met the conditions of her informal probation set a year ago regarding a much-publicized, drug-related traffic stop on the Las Vegas Strip, Justice of the Peace Joe Bonaventure this morning formally closed her case.

The celebrity heiress and TV reality show star did not appear in court today herself.

Bonaventure had told her a year ago that she didn’t have to return to court today — if she stayed out of trouble and met all of the requirements he placed on her as part of a deal her lawyers cut with the Clark County District Attorney’s office for her to avoid felony charges.

She was represented during the short hearing today by one of her attorneys, Richard Schonfeld. Schonfeld brought in the documentation showing that she had fulfilled the requirements that Bonaventure sternly set for her a year ago, when he granted her probation for pleading guilty to two misdemeanor charges.

Hilton got into trouble following a traffic stop Aug. 27, 2010, in front of the Wynn Las Vegas with her her ex-boyfriend, Cy Waits on the Las Vegas Strip.

A Metro motorcycle cop investigated what smelled like marijuana smoke coming from Waits’ Cadillac Escalade SUV. When Hilton asked officers if she could go inside the Wynn, a small plastic bag containing 0.8 of a gram of cocaine spilled out of her purse and she was arrested.

Under the deal made with the DA, Hilton pleaded guilty to misdemeanor charges of drug possession and obstructing an officer.

“We ask that her informal probation be terminated honorably and the case be closed at this time,” Schonfeld said this morning during the hearing in Las Vegas Justice Court.

Deputy District Attorney Priyanka Sedlock also told the judge Hilton had met the conditions.

“She has stayed out of trouble, so the state has no objection,” Sedlock said.

Bonaventure said he had documentation that she had paid the $2,000 in fines.

He had also required that she attend an intensive substance abuse program. He said her attorneys have given him a letter from Hollywood Recovery Services in Los Angeles that indicated Hilton attended 15 individual counseling sessions, each lasting two hours.

“This indicates Miss Hilton was attentive, cooperative and fully engaged,” Bonaventure said. “The assessment here is that she understands the seriousness of the situation and the consequences of her actions.”

Bonaventure said the other requirement of her informal probation was to complete 200 hours of community service.

“I’ll note I have a report from Union Rescue Mission in Los Angeles indicating 209 hours of community service,” Bonaventure said.

He said he also had a form from the Hollywood Beautification Team that indicates she performed 2.25 hours of community service painting out graffiti in Los Angeles.

“I have a report from the Animal Foundation indicating a number of hours of community service that was done locally here in Las Vegas,” he said.

Her canceled Oxygen network TV show, “The World According to Paris,” features a segment in Episode 6 of her working at Las Vegas’ Lied Animal Shelter, 655 N. Mohave Road, sweeping up dog feces as she wears white gloves and a yellow vest.

Bonaventure said he had another report from Volunteers of America that she gave them five hours of community service in Los Angeles.

“This also indicates that Miss Hilton supplied some gifts to that organization,” Bonaventure said.

The judge said he also had a report indicating six hours of community service to The Race to Erase Multiple Sclerosis and another 3.5 hours to the Nancy Davis Foundation for Multiple Sclerosis’ Race to Erase Multiple Sclerosis Campaign.

“This is a total of 228 hours of community service. So she’s, in fact, done more community service than was ordered,” Bonaventure said. “The fine is complete. The counseling is complete. The community service is complete. Miss Sedlock, you said the state is satisfied that Miss Hilton did stay out of trouble, is that correct?”

“That’s correct,” Sedlock said.

“That does complete the requirements in this case. Accordingly, the convictions on the two misdemeanors stand. The case is closed today and that does complete Miss Hilton’s term of informal probation. This case is closed.”

Outside the courtroom, Schonfeld handed out a statement from his law partner, David Z. Chesnoff.

“As I anticipated Ms. Hilton fulfilled all obligations to the court and community ahead of schedule and has remained trouble free during her probation,” Chesnoff wrote. “For the past year she treated the situation with the seriousness that it deserved.”

On Aug. 24, Hilton’s ex-boyfriend, Cy Waits, resolved his case, pleading no contest to a misdemeanor charge of driving under the influence of marijuana. In return, two other charges were dismissed against him, including a charge of having marijuana in his possession.

Waits was given a 30-day suspended sentence. Waits also must pay a $585 fine, go to a DUI school and attend a victim impact panel discussion. He must return at 7:30 a.m. Nov. 23 before Justice of the Peace William Kephart to see if he has met those requirements.

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