Celebrity Justice - The FindLaw Celebrities and The Law Blog

January 2015 Archives

Top 5 Legal Lies From 'HTGAWM' S1 E10 ('Hello Raskolnikov')

After going on Winter Break for two months, ABC's "How To Get Away With Murder" is back. The gang had to deal with the aftermath of #WhoKilledSam and figure out how to stop the trial of "Goth Girl" Rebecca before it started.

The episode ends with Annalise giving her class (remember them?) a hypothetical about exonerating accomplices to a murder. (Yes, that's a little close to home.) So what did the show get wrong about the law this time? First, here's a tweetable recap:

#HTGAWM in 140 Characters: Can the gang stop Rebecca's trial and lie about Sam's disappearance at the same time? Yes they can, with Annalise pulling the strings.

'Suge' Knight Arrested: Murder, Hit-and-Run Alleged

Famous (and at times infamous) music producer Marion "Suge" Knight has found himself once again in legal hot water. This time, Knight was arrested after a hit-and-run in which he allegedly ran over two people in his car, killing one of them.

Knight's attorney claimed he fled in his truck in self defense, because the two victims were actually trying to kill him following a fight on a film set. What crime does Knight stand accused of, and does he have any defenses?

James Brown Will Dispute: Was He Legally Married When He Died?

James Brown, the Godfather of Soul, died in 2006, but a legal battle over his estate has been going on ever since. Brown's will left his entire estate to a charitable trust, leaving nothing to the woman he married in 2001, Tommie Rae Hynie.

But legally speaking, was Hynie even Brown's spouse at all? The question arose because Hynie had married another man in 1997; she filed for an annulment of that marriage in 2004, the same year James Brown filed for an annulment of his marriage with Hynie. (Brown dismissed his action after the couple reconciled.)

After Brown's death, Hynie contested his will, claiming that she had been married to Brown at the time. In a 46-page decision (!), a South Carolina judge agreed, potentially entitling Hynie to a portion of Brown's estate -- even though she was never mentioned in Brown's will.

Melissa Rivers Sues N.Y. Clinic Over Joan Rivers' Death

Months after Joan Rivers' tragic death following a medical procedure, her daughter Melissa has filed a lawsuit against Yorkville Endoscopy Center, the New York clinic where Joan was having a routine procedure performed to remove a growth on her vocal cords.

During the procedure, Joan Rivers stopped breathing for a few minutes, which is long enough to permanently damage the brain. She died about a week later, after Melissa made the decision to take her off life support.

Rick Springfield Prevails in Alleged Butt Injury Lawsuit

Eighties rocker Rick Springfield has prevailed in a personal injury lawsuit brought by a woman who claimed she was injured after being struck by the singer's butt.

The trial that ended last week in New York was the second trial to be held in the case, The Associated Press reports. The lawsuit against Springfield -- known for his 1981 hit "Jessie's Girl" as well as a recurring role on television soap opera "General Hospital" -- was originally filed in 2007, but the first trial in the case ended in a mistrial in 2013.

What were the facts behind this peculiar case?

Mark Walhberg's Pardon Petition: What Happens Next?

Actor Mark Wahlberg has petitioned the state of Massachusetts to be pardoned for crimes he committed when he was 16.

Wahlberg was arrested in 1988 for attacking two Vietnamese men while trying to steal beer, reports The Associated Press. As a result of the attack, which left one man partially blinded, Wahlberg was convicted on a number of different criminal charges, including assault and battery, assault and battery with a dangerous weapon, possession of a controlled substance, and criminal contempt. Wahlberg subsequently served 45 days in jail.

Wahlberg, now 43, is looking to wipe the slate clean with a pardon. What does a pardon actually do and what does Wahlberg need to prove in order to get one?

Fitness Model Greg Plitt Killed by Train; Was He Trespassing?

Fitness model and reality TV star Greg Plitt may have been trespassing on the train tracks where he was struck and killed by a train Saturday afternoon near Los Angeles, authorities say.

Plitt, 37, was struck by a Metrolink commuter train about 4 p.m., reports the Los Angeles Times. According to crew members who were at the scene, Plitt may have been attempting to film a "Superman"-themed segment when he was struck just north of the Burbank Metrolink Station.

Metrolink officials said that Plitt and his crew had not obtained the permits required to film on the railroad's right-of-way.

'7th Heaven's' Stephen Collins to Give Deposition in Divorce Case

Former "7th Heaven" star Stephen Collins must sit for a deposition, the judge in his ongoing divorce proceedings ruled Wednesday.

The ruling came after a request by Collins' estranged wife Faye Grant, reports The Associated Press. Grant wants Collins to answer questions about the financial fallout he claims occurred after an audio recording was released last year in which he admitted to inappropriate sexual conduct with three underage girls.

Collins claims the release of the taped confession, the truth of which he later acknowledged, ruined his career.

Adnan Syed, Subject of 'Serial,' Asks for Another Appeal

Adnan Syed, the subject of "Serial" -- the podcast that took the world by storm last fall -- might get some relief from the Maryland Court of Special Appeals.

Even though Syed was convicted of the murder of fellow high school student and ex-girlfriend Hae Min Lee in 2000, and long ago exhausted his appeals, the podcast -- which reached the milestone of 5 million downloads faster than any other in iTunes history -- reignited interest in the case.

The Weeknd Arrested After Allegedly Punching Cop in Vegas

R&B singer The Weeknd was arrested over the weekend after allegedly punching a police officer in the head.

The incident occurred early Saturday in Las Vegas, reports E! Online. The Weeknd -- whose real name is Abel Tesfaye -- was reportedly involved in a fight involving a large group of people inside the Cromwell Hotel. When an officer attempting to break up the fight dragged The Weeknd into an elevator, he allegedly punched the officer in the head with a closed fist. As a result, The Weeknd found himself in slightly less hospitable accommodations: the Clark County Detention Center.

What charges is The Weeknd now facing following his arrest?

What happens when an episode of "The Good Wife" begins with on-screen disclaimers? In this case, you get a "ripped-from-the-headlines" subplot that (a) threatens to derail Alicia's latest campaign event (a televised debate) and (b) overshadows the few moments of actual legal drama.

Here's what you need to know from last night's episode, entitled "The Debate":

Want a 'Quickie' Wedding Like Ludacris? 5 Lyrical Legal Lessons

You may have heard by now: Rapper Ludacris (aka Christopher Bridges) married his longtime "lover and friend" Eudoxie Mbouguiengue a mere two weeks after proposing.

According to the New York Daily News, Luda proposed to Eudoxie on December 26 by lighting up the question "Eudoxie, will you marry me" in blue on a grass field while their plane flew overhead. Then, in his own words, he "did the thing before 2015" in a private ceremony over the holidays.

The real kicker, however, came when it was revealed that they got engaged and married on the same day, reports E! News.

It's sweet, romantic, and rife with legal issues. Like an obnoxious parent, we'll remind you that before you "act a fool" and have your own quickie wedding, consider these few pieces of Luda lyric-inspired advice:

Three 6 Mafia's Crunchy Black Faces Arrest Warrant

Rapper Crunchy Black of Three 6 Mafia has a warrant out for his arrest after missing his court date for felony drug and domestic violence charges.

Crunchy Black was arrested last March, TMZ reports, after guests at a Minnesota hotel reported hearing screams and thuds coming from his hotel room. A hotel employee who came to check on the room told police that Crunchy Black's fiancee had locked herself in a bathroom and said she would only come out if Crunchy Black would "stop beating her."

When police arrived, they reportedly found blood on the hotel bed and on the door frame, along with visible injuries on the woman's face.

5 Engagement Tips for 'Teen Mom' Jenelle Evans

"Teen Mom 2" star Jenelle Evans has announced that she recently got engaged to boyfriend Nathan Griffith.

Evans and Griffith have been dating for nearly two years and have a 4-month-old son together, reports E! Online. Both Evans and Griffith also have children from prior relationships, including Evans' 5-year-old daughter Jace. Details of the couple's engagement were not disclosed, but the bride-to-be did post pictures of her engagement ring on social media.

What legal issues should Evans and Griffith keep in mind as they prepare to take their vows? Here are five engagement tips they may want to consider:

Teresa Giudice in Prison: 5 Interesting Facts

"The Real Housewives of New Jersey" star Teresa Giudice began serving her 15-month federal prison sentence on Monday.

Giudice arrived at the Federal Correctional Institute in Danbury, Connecticut, just before 3 a.m., reports E! Online. Giudice and her husband Joe Giudice both pleaded guilty to bankruptcy fraud charges in 2014. Teresa was facing as much as 27 months in prison for her role in the fraud scheme, which included as much as $5 million in fraudulent mortgage loans.

In fitting reality TV fashion, however, it turns out that the prison Teresa Giudice will call home for the next 15 months is something of a celebrity itself. What should you know about FCI Danbury? Here are five interesting facts:

'The Good Wife': Good Law? - Season 6, Episode 11

"The Good Wife" returns for the second half of the show's sixth season with "Hail Mary," which as the title suggests, involves some last-second heroics in an attempt to save Cary from his impending imprisonment.

December's midseason finale left off with Cary accepting a plea bargain, agreeing to plead guilty to conspiracy in exchange for a four-year prison sentence. "Hail Mary" picks up with Cary being advised by a prison consultant on how to survive the next four years inside.

Maury Povich Sued by Convicted Rapist Over Seeing Daughter on TV

TV personality Maury Povich is being sued by a convicted rapist who saw his daughter on the "Maury Povich Show."

Alan B. Griffin, who is currently incarcerated in Florida for sexual battery and second-degree attempted murder, claims that seeing his daughter exploited on "Maury" led him to suicidal thoughts and a whole year of psychiatric counseling. TMZ reports that this all went down more than four years ago when Griffin's wife and 7-year-old daughter appeared on TV, and Griffin was the topic of discussion.

Does this prison inmate have a case against Maury?