A Glendale man who was already on probation for using a pick ax to vandalize President Donald Trump’s star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame pleaded no contest Tuesday to felony charges stemming from the theft of a statue of Marilyn Monroe last month.
Austin Mikel Clay, 25, pleaded no contest over the prosecution’s objection to one felony count each of grand theft of property valued at more than $950 and vandalism causing over $400 damage, and was immediately sentenced to one year in county jail and three years of probation and ordered to pay $14,260 in restitution, according to the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office.
The statue was sawed off its perch atop the Ladies of Hollywood Gazebo on the Hollywood Walk of Fame — which celebrates women in film from different cultures — on the night of June 16, authorities said.
Clay, who was on felony probation for damaging Trump’s star last summer, was arrested June 21 by Los Angeles police in connection with the theft of the statue.
Police conducted a search of his home and found evidence that linked him to the theft, Los Angeles Police Department Detective Douglas Oldfield told NBC4.
The evidence found did not include the statue, which is owned by the city of Los Angeles and was sawed off the top of the gazebo at Hollywood Boulevard and La Brea Avenue at around 11:30 p.m.
“Looking back at the (security) video, it would be reasonable that the statue broke and could be in multiple pieces,” Oldfield said.
Along with his plea involving the statue, Clay admitted violating his probation in the earlier case in which he pleaded no contest to a felony vandalism charge stemming from the destruction of Trump’s star on the evening of July 25, 2018. He was sentenced in November to one day in jail, 20 days of community labor, three years of probation and more than $9,400 in restitution to the Hollywood Chamber of Commerce.
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