Actor Sean Penn was sentenced to three years of probation and 300 hours of community service yesterday for battery and vandalism against photographer Jordan Dawes in an incident that occurred on October 2, 2009, in Brentwood, California. Dawes was filming a story about Paparazzi when Penn "began kicking and punching" him. He says he later required knee surgery as a result of the attack. According to a civil suit filed by Dawes, Penn has threatened to kill him, saying "The next time I see you, you will be in a box."
Penn's lawyer, Richard Hirsch, stated, "Prolonging this matter in the court system would not have been in Mr. Penn's best interests and would have distracted from his charitable commitments, specifically his work in Haiti. Accordingly he has decided to accept the terms and move on."
Sean Penn's imdb.com bio says he is a "powerhouse film performer capable of intensely moving work who has gone from strength to strength during a colorful film career, and who has drawn much media attention for his stormy private life and political viewpoints."
ADDENDUM: A little more information—Penn pleaded no contest to one count of misdemeanor vandalism, and the battery charge was dismissed. In addition to the probation, he was assigned 36 hours of anger management therapy by the court and must stay 100 yards away from his victim. A restitution hearing for the photographer's cameras and medical bills is scheduled for July 8th. (Thanks for this to TOP's Legal Editor-at-Large, Anonymous.)
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Original contents copyright 2010 by Michael C. Johnston and/or the bylined author. All Rights Reserved.