Willie Nelson Blows Off Jail Time

Herb-happy country star gets probation, fine after pleading guilty to misdemeanor marijuana possession

By Julie Keller Apr 25, 2007 5:18 PMTags

Any plans to send Willie Nelson to jail for drug possession have gone to pot.

The herb-happy country crooner has been spared serving time in the slammer after pleading guilty to misdemeanor charges of marijuana possession Tuesday in Louisiana.

Nelson and members of his posse were issued citations in September after state troopers boarded his tour bus and sniffed out his stash of marijuana and hallucinogenic mushrooms.

In exchange for their guilty pleas, Nelson and tour manager David Anderson each paid a $1,024 fine and were placed on probation for six months by state Judge Paul deMahy.

As part of a plea deal, charges against Bobbie Nelson, the singer's sister who was also on the tour bus at the time, were dismissed. Charges against David Anderson and Tony Sizemore, the two bus drivers who were also on board during the bust, were also dropped by St. Martin Parish Assistant District Attorney Chester Cedars after he determined there was no proof the duo had anything to do with the illicit cache.

Nelson has yet to release an official statement about the plea, but he did sign autographs and shake hands with a crowd of fans gathered outside the courthouse, telling them "Thank y'all" before jumping into a waiting car and zooming off into the sunset.

Of course, we're not holding our breath that the wrist-slap will do anything to halt his habit. Nelson's well-known affinity for grass. Since he's a longtime proponent of legalizing marijuana, a paradigm shift isn't likely.

Last fall, he supported an unsuccessful gubernatorial bid for his pal Kinky Friedman, a singer-songwriter turned politician who was gunning to be the next Texas governor and called on the decriminalization of marijuana to help clear clogged state prisons of nonviolent offenders.