Lindsay Lohan makes brief court appearance with new attorney

DEL AIRE, Calif.

Superior Court Judge Stephanie Sautner shook her head when she saw Lohan, who showed up a little late wearing a black dress. Lohan spoke only briefly to confirm that she was switching attorneys. New York attorney Mark Heller is replacing Lohan's previous attorney Shawn Holley, who is largely credited with keeping Lohan out of jail.

It was just months ago when Sautner had urged the starlet to grow up and stay out of trouble. It was the first time the actress had been required to appear in court in nearly a year.

Heller had filed a medical document on her behalf, trying to excuse her from the court appearance. He said she was suffering from an upper respiratory illness, but apparently, Lohan felt well enough to travel from New York to appear in court.

Lohan hired Heller to represent her in the case involving the accident on Pacific Coast Highway in June, where she is accused of lying to officers about crashing her Porsche into the back of a dump track, driving recklessly and obstructing an officer from performing duties. She has pleaded not guilty to the three misdemeanor counts.

"It's my hope that I can proceed with this expeditiously because I believe it would be in Miss Lohan's best interest to bring closure to this drama in her life," Heller told Sautner.

Heller will also handle her probation violation case that stems from a jewelry theft and is also representing the actress in a separate case in New York. He had to have a California attorney sponsor him before he was allowed to practice here.

Sautner warned Lohan that she could face jail time for a possible probation violation, even if she is acquitted of the misdemeanor counts. At the time of the PCH wreck, Lohan was on probation stemming from a 2011 necklace theft case, which resulted in the judge revoking that probation. The 26-year-old could be sentenced to 245 days in jail if a judge determines her actions in the crash were a violation of her sentence.

Sautner will not be handling Lohan's upcoming case because she is retiring before the next court hearing on March 1. Lohan's trial date was delayed to March 18.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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