Lindsay Lohan's theft charge involving a missing necklace has been reduced from a felony to a misdemeanor, which means the actress would receive a lighter sentence if she is convicted but could still land her in jail.
The 24-year-old actress appeared in court on Friday, April 22, for a preliminary hearing, during which prosecutors questioned witnesses, including workers from the store that reported the necklace stolen, as well as police officers, and presented evidence against her.
Lohan pleaded not guilty to the misdemeanor theft charge and was ordered by a judge to appear at a pretrial hearing on May 11.
The actress is on probation stemming from a 2007 drunk driving and cocaine possession case and has served time behind bars before. She is accused of stealing the necklace from Kamofie and Co., a store located in the Venice area of Los Angeles on Jan. 22, three weeks after she was released from court-ordered rehab.
Lohan had earlier this year also pleaded not guilty to her previous felony charge. A trial has been tentatively set for June 3. If she is convicted of misdemeanor theft, she could be sent to jail for up to a year for what would mark her fourth stint. A felony conviction would have landed the actress behind bars for a longer period.
The owner of the store had said Lohan tried on the necklace and asked how much it cost. She said she told the actress it was $2,500. Lohan looked at herself wearing the necklace in the mirror for about 20 minutes, she said, adding that about 10 minutes after the actress left the store, she realized the jewelry piece was missing.
The owner said Lohan told her she would return the following day to see a ring and that she left her employees a note saying to expect the actress and that she had forgotten to return the necklace.
The store clerk said she released a surveillance tape. Video footage that had aired on the television show "Entertainment Tonight" showed Lohan texting on her phone, pacing and talking to a store clerk at the shore.
Lohan' lawyer, Shawn Holley, had planned to challenge the value of the necklace. If it was determined to be worth less than $950, the actress could no longer be charged with a felony. The store's owner said she bought the necklace for $850 and marked up the selling price to $2,500.
Lohan has rejected two plea offers to settle the case, which would have carried jail sentences.
Lohan's past three stints behind bars have each lasted 84 minutes, 14 days and 15 hours - the last of which occurred in September 2010 after she failed a drug test and wrote about it on her Twitter page.
Meanwhile, Lohan has been trying to advance her acting career. On Thursday, it was announced that she has been cast as Kim Gotti in the new film "Gotti: Three Generations," which stars John Travolta as mob boss John Gotti, Sr., her character's father-in-law.
The actress was previously in talks to portray the late mob boss' daughter Victoria.
Fiore Films, an independent production company, said in a statement obtained by OnTheRedCarpet.com that Lohan had agreed to a two-picture deal with the firm - "Gotti: Three Generations" and "Mob Street."
"I am just grateful for the life i have," Lohan said on her Twitter page early on Friday. "I cannot explain how excited i am to begin working on films again, on top of that- i better get one of my two favorite scripts that i am in love with. my friends know what they both are..... all my love- LL god bless and g'night :)"