Man who smashed Donald Trump's star on Hollywood Walk of Fame avoids jail

A man who smashed up Donald Trump's star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame has avoided jail.

James Lambert Otis, 53, was filmed attacking the star with a pickaxe and a sledgehammer on October 26, two weeks before Mr Trump won the US presidential election.

Otis was charged with one count of vandalism and entered a plea of no contest at a court hearing on Tuesday, the Los Angeles County District Attorney's Office said.

He was sentenced to three years of formal probation and 20 days work with the California Department of Transportation.

He was also ordered to pay 3,700 dollars to the Hollywood Historic Trust and 700 dollars to the Hollywood Chamber of Commerce, which manages the Walk of Fame.

Otis had faced three years in jail if convicted of the offence at trial, the district attorney's office had previously said.

During the attack, Otis removed a brass medallion from the middle of Trump's star, according to prosecutors.

A video posted online after the incident showed Mr Trump's star on Hollywood Boulevard being smashed to pieces and his name removed from it.

According to Deadline, the vandal, dressed as a city construction worker, said he originally intended to remove Mr Trump's name from the star to auction it off to raise funds for women who accused him of sexual assault.

Mr Trump has vehemently denied the sexual assault allegations.

The tycoon-turned-politician received the 2,327th star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in 2007 for his work on the American version of The Apprentice.

It was repeatedly targeted in the months before the US election following his controversial comments about banning Muslims from entering the US and building a wall on the US-Mexico border.

In July, a British artist known as Plastic Jesus installed a mini-wall around Mr Trump's star, topped with razor wire, miniature US flags and Keep Out signs.

Following Otis's vandal attack, the Hollywood Chamber of Commerce, which manages the Walk of Fame, said it intended "to prosecute to the full extent of the law".

Leron Gubler, president of the Hollywood Chamber of Commerce, said at the time: "The Hollywood Walk of Fame is an institution celebrating the positive contributions of the inductees.

"When people are unhappy with one of our honourees, we would hope that they would project their anger in more positive ways than to vandalise a California State landmark.

"Our democracy is based on respect for the law. People can make a difference by voting and not destroying public property."

Mr Trump's star was repaired immediately after it was attacked and covered for several days for protection, a Hollywood Chamber of Commerce spokeswoman said.


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