Lindsay Lohan chose to complete her journey from the stars to the gutter in a manner that felt grimly appropriate, given the nature of her downfall: she arrived in court fashionably late, expensively attired, and trailed, as ever, by a vast army of paparazzi.
The actress, who was once a rising Hollywood talent but is perhaps now America's most prominent fallen celebrity, was taken into custody at Beverly Hills courthouse yesterday to begin a jail sentence for repeatedly violating the terms of her probation.
After a brief hearing, Lohan rose and was handcuffed, before being taken to a women's prison in Lynwood, an industrial suburb of Los Angeles. Despite the humiliation there was a sliver of good news – overcrowding at the jail means she is likely to serve just two weeks of her 90-day term, which she will spend in isolation due to her celebrity.
The 24-year-old did not comment during the hearing, but posted an update on her Twitter feed late on Monday in which she noted: "Never thought that I'd be 'booking' into jail." Her last minutes of freedom were witnessed by her tearful mother, Dina, and sister Ali, together with her estranged father Michael, who yelled "We love you Lindsay!" as she was led away.