UPDATE 2 (June 13, 2011): Via his attorney, Nelson agreed last week to pay a $500 fine, plus roughly $280 in court costs after pleading no contest to possession of drug paraphernalia, a misdemeanor.
"He got the same thing I'd give to anybody," Texas prosecutor C.R. Bramblett said in a statement.
UPDATE: J/K! Bramblett says that Nelson, despite the judge's demand that he appear in court in person to plead guilty, does not have to sing when he gets there.
Um, Willie Nelson may want to keep a better eye on his stash. Either that, or the legal system allows for some very unusual and rather self-serving plea deals (somewhere Lindsay Lohan is fuming).
A Texas county attorney has made a recommendation to the judge to resolve the rocker's marijuana possession charges by not only pleading guilty (so far, so good) and paying a minimal fine (ditto), but by singing live before the court (what now?!).
Here's the deal…
Hudspeth County Attorney Kit Bramblett recommended that instead of Nelson settling his case by mail, as is typical procedure for these types of cases, the legendary singer appear in court and belt out his best version of "Blue Eyes Crying in the Rain."
For real. Bramblett—who, as it turns out, is quite the character—thinks that the courtroom crooning would satisfy community service for the misdeed.
"I am aware that he has been known to use pot for many years," Bramblett told the Washington Post. "I also know that Ben Franklin and Thomas Jefferson used to go out after supper and smoke a line of hemp and that's what marijuana's made out of."
Wait, what? If that's his way of arguing that Willie Nelson is a patriot, well, um, OK.
Though any attempt at masking special treatment for the celeb already went up in smoke, as it were, when Bramblett told the local Big Bend Sentinel newspaper, "You bet your ass I ain't gonna be mean to Willie Nelson."
He also joked (we hope) that the reason the charge was downgraded from its original felonious amount was because he personally "threw out enough of it or smoked enough" to warrant the lesser count.
So, when would this potential courthouse concert take place?
In theory, whenever Nelson's in the vicinity, and the judge rules on whether or not the plea deal—proposed in the wake of Nelson's arrest Nov. 26 after Border Patrol found pot on his tour bus—is a go. Not that Bramblett is telling when that may be (though the next time Nelson's tour bus rolls through Sierra Blanca is probably the best guess).
"The sheriff has threatened me with my life if I do tell because he says that 50,000 people will show up in the town," he told the Post.
So that brings the life-threats up to two for Bramblett, who told his local paper that Nelson also happens to be County Judge Becky Dean Walker's favorite singer.
"She told me don't you dare let Willie Nelson plead through the mail," the 78-year-old crackerjack explained to his local paper.
See what we were saying about that character thing?