When the rich attack

Reality sure bites for actress Winona Ryder. Who actually thought she’d get slapped with vandalism and grand theft, a double felony? And the question on everyone’s mind is, why would someone as rich and famous as Winona steal anyway? Well, you can pick your choice from the multiple excuses Ms. Ryder offers: she was high on drugs that she did not have a prescription for; she thought her personal assistant had paid for the merchandise; or my favourite, she was researching a role for an upcoming movie about a kleptomaniac.

At least she didn’t lower her fashion standards when she went for the five-finger discount. She didn’t steal off of the discount bin at Wal-Mart or anything heinous like that. Instead, she went straight for the expensive name brands from Saks Fifth Avenue in Beverly Hills. The items she looted included a $760 Marc Jacobs thermal top, a $80 pair of Donna Karan cashmere blend socks, a $540 Natori handbag, and a $1,595 Gucci dress. Saks has probably never received this much publicity before–if they are smart, they will come out with their own ‘Winona’ label and milk this trial for all it’s worth. What the celebrity was wearing seemed to be in more of the headlines than what her defense was dishing out.

While it’s hard to picture such an angelic looking woman in black and white stripes, everyone needs to stop feeling sorry for the unrepentant thief. Between her appearances on David Letterman and sporting her “Free Winona” t-shirt, the actress doesn’t seem to be taking these charges too seriously. In fact, she seems to be capitalizing on them. Winona has not admitted to the shoplifting act, and she certainly hasn’t shown any remorse. She won’t even serve any prison time, because the prosecutors have made it clear that they don’t want to punish Winona too harshly. She will probably get a marginal fine and maybe some community service duty. In addition, this circus trial will only enhance her career prospects. There are offers in the works right now for Winona to write a book and even star in a movie about her whole encounter with the law.

This trial can be added to the various circus celebrity trials that waste money on courtroom time and only serve to further the celebrity’s career. Since she didn’t kill anybody or anything serious like that, all of the “bad press” will make her prime material for upcoming roles. At most, this whole experience may have been a little embarrassing for the actress, but Hollywood is extremely forgiving, and Winona will soon be reaping the rewards of this legal battle when her movie starring price is raised by a few million.

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