The young Calabassas hoodlums known as the Bling Ring -- who glamorously raided the homes of equally young, unequally loaded celebrities for whatever their hearts desired in 2008 and 2009 -- just saw their ringleader skip off scot-free.
As of this afternoon, 20-year-old Rachel Lee is off the hook for an August 2009 robbery of Lindsay Lohan's Hollywood mansion. Superior Court Judge Larry P. Fidler dismissed Lee's felony charge, calling evidence of her involvement "woefully insufficient." (Does that really give you woe, Larry? Even on a Friday?)
It's an appropriate turn of events, considering Lohan's own illustrious history of sniffling her way out of jail time.
A March 2010 Vanity Fair article detailed the high-school friends' wild, reckless burglary blowout. It openly assumes Lee was responsible for the Lohan robbery.
Lee accomplice Nicholas Frank Prugo told the magazine: "Rachel's, like, biggest conquest was Lindsay Lohan. It was her ultimate fashion icon." The shopping spree was then explained in detail:
Lee returned to L.A. from Vegas and, on the night of August 23, Prugo, Lee, and [Diana] Tamayo allegedly burglarized Lohan's Spanish-style home in the Hollywood Hills of close to $130,000 in clothes and jewelry. Lee and Tamayo were, "like, freaking out over Lindsay's stuff," Prugo said.
It was. On August 26, the L.A.P.D.--with Lohan's permission--released her surveillance video to TMZ. Now there were two videos circulating (Lohan's and Patridge's), making it all but plain to see that they had captured images of the same people, and that there was a connection between the Hollywood Hills burglaries. Tips started pouring in as to the thieves' identities. But police were already moving on information they had received from someone who said she overheard Lee and Prugo bragging of their exploits at a party. Cops used Facebook to ascertain that Lee and Prugo were "friends" with each other.
When Lee was taken into custody by the LAPD, she notoriously asked, excited: "What did Lindsay say?"
We're no lawyers, but come on. How much proof do you need? And California Rumor has it that Lee wasn't very good at concealing her guilt:
After Lee was arrested [in Vegas!], police reportedly impounded various items from her father's home including laptops, photographs of a partially nude woman, pictures of Lee's friends, two hundred $100 bills, a Korean passport and a small amount of marijuana. It has been claimed that police also found a number of items that may have belonged to the celebrities, including Lindsay Lohan's hat, jeans linked to Rachel Bilson and pictures of Paris Hilton nude.
This is by no means an end to courthouse drama for the Bling Ring -- Lee included. She's still awaiting trial for a break-in at the home of "Hills" reality star Audrina Patridge and tabloid cover girl Paris Hilton, along with a couple other counts of receiving stolen property and conspiracy. You know, just your everyday coming-of-age rebellion.
If you like this story, consider signing up for our email newsletters.
SHOW ME HOW
You have successfully signed up for your selected newsletter(s) - please keep an eye on your mailbox, we're movin' in!
The Bling Ring kids have officially clawed their way into the soul-killing Hollywood fame bubble, enjoying a fancy criminal title (it rhymes!) and watching their mugshots dance around the Internet like popcorn.
Another member of Lee's posse, Alexis Christine Neiers, is the star of E! reality show "Pretty Wild" and younger sister to a Playboy model. Just like Lee -- in a Lohan-esque spectacle of whiny white bitch getting off the hook -- Neiers pleaded "no contest" last May to her charges, and was set free 29 days into a six-month sentence.
All right -- back to the blow and body shots already!