Arrested soap stars
Credit: Image: Jill Johnson, Nick Sined/JPI

The law in the real world versus the soap opera world.

Characters on our soaps are constantly getting in trouble with the law, but many rarely stay in trouble. Often times this has to do with the bumbling soap cops. From Young & Restless’ Paul Williams, to the joke that is Days of our Lives’ Salem PD, and Port Charles’ worst police commissioner in years, General Hospital’s Jordan Ashford, fans wonder how any of them actually keep their jobs. Their incompetence usually results in criminals going free.

Then there are the crafty lawyers who help to protect their clients. Diane Miller on General Hospital has kept her clients Jason Morgan and Sonny Corinthos out of many jail sentences. Even when Sonny was finally sent to prison, he happened to be in the right place at the right time to save the governor’s daughter during a riot and earned himself a pardon. Young and the Restless’ Britney Hodges and Michael Baldwin often go head to head in court battling for the best interests of their clients. And Justin Kiriakis on Days of our Lives has taken up the late Mickey Horton’s mantel of defending the innocent.

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Prison on soap operas tends to be a convenient way of writing out characters and actors, as with poor Shawn Butler on General Hospital, who is still in jail for a crime he didn’t commit. Lily Winters on Young and the Restless was also off the canvas for awhile to serve time in prison. Sometimes though prison can become a major setting for a storyline and characters, as was the case on Days of our Lives with Hattie Adams, Hope Brady, and Gabi Hernandez.

Unfortunately, when the actors who play the soap characters we love get into trouble in the real world, they face real consequences. Browse our gallery of just some of the actors on soaps, past and present, who have run into trouble with the law.

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