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No joke, comedian Katt Williams has been sentenced to community service after pleading guilty to recklessly evading a police officer.
It was a short chase -- on a ridiculous three-wheeled Spyder, no less -- through downtown Sacramento, California. After barrelling down a pedestrian-only street and nearly hitting five people, Katt Williams was sentenced to 90 days of community service.
But what is community service exactly?
Community service is an alternative sentence. A judge orders the defendant to perform work on behalf of the community. In exchange, the defendant gets a complete or partial reduction of fines and/or jail time.
Katt Williams was originally sentenced to 180 days in jail, reports The Sacaramento Bee. But if he finishes 90 days of community service, the other half of his sentence will be stayed.
In many cases, a defendant's community service is related to the charges against him. For example, a person convicted of DUI may have to give speeches to little Timmy and his classmates about why drunken driving is bad.
Maybe Katt Williams should give speeches about anger management?
A judge will sometimes allow an offender to pick the type of community service he wishes to do. Katt Williams should keep his fingers crossed. Other celebrities with a history of legal problems (*cough* Lindsay Lohan *cough*) haven't been so lucky.
But showing up and completing the court-ordered community service is key. If the comedian fails to successfully perform and complete his service like other celebrities (*cough* Lindsay Lohan *cough*) he'll violate the terms of his sentence, and have to serve the original sentence of 180 days -- in theory.
In reality, due to overcrowding in jails, even if he's a no-show at community service, he probably wouldn't have to serve the full 180 days. But because of his impressive history of run-ins with the law, the court might be more strict with him to encourage him to change his ways.
The consequences for violating community service could be lenient or harsh. It's a game of chicken -- a game Katt Williams seems to love.
Meeting with a lawyer can help you understand your options and how to best protect your rights. Visit our attorney directory to find a lawyer near you who can help.