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Crime News Breaking News

Woman Who Allegedly Damaged Andy Warhol Painting On First Date Could Get Life In Prison

The man is an attorney who represented former Texas Gov. Rick Perry in an abuse-of-power case and held a fundraiser in his home for Donald Trump.

By Sowmya Krishnamurthy

A bad first date could leave a Texas woman in prison. Lindy Lou Layman is charged with felony criminal mischief after allegedly destroying valuable art at the home of attorney Tony Buzbee on Dec. 23.

According to Buzbee, 29-year-old Layman became intoxicated during their first date at his home. Authorities believe that Layman hid in the mansion when 49-year-old Buzbee tried to call an Uber for her. She yelled "I'm not leaving," before attacking the artwork. She became belligerent and destroyed two Warhol works (each valued at $500,000) by pouring red wine on them and breaking $20,000 sculptures. The damage is approximated at $300,000.

She denies the allegations. "We certainly disagree with Mr. Buzbee's rendition of the facts when he spoke to the media, and we disagree with what was said in probable-cause court," Layman's lawyer, Justin Keiter, said, per The Dallas Morning News. He also called her a "great person." 

"She's weathering the storm of the intense media scrutiny that she has endured," he said, per the Houston Chronicle. He said that he'll save "the real story" of the incident for the courtroom.

Due to the value of the items allegedly destroyed, the punishment is steep. If Layman is accused of the maximum, it would be a first degree felony. If convicted, she can face life in prison.

The case of has become high-profile due to Buzbee's professional work and connections. As the Associated Press reports, Buzbee represented former Texas Gov. Rick Perry in an abuse-of-power case. He also held a fundraiser in his home when Donald Trump was running for president and donated $250,000 to his campaign.

Andy Warhol paintings are especially valuable in the art world. As CNN reports, a Warhol called "Silver Car Crash" sold for $105.4 million in 2013. At the time, this was the second-most expensive piece of art ever auctioned, per Sotheby's auction house. "'Silver Car Crash' is the most important work of contemporary art we have ever had the privilege to offer, and its exceptional result is a testament to that fact," said Tobias Meyer, worldwide head of contemporary art at Sotheby's, about the work. 

[Photo: Houston Police Department]

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