Vanessa Hudgens given ultimatum over Sedona carving

Vanessa Hudgens at the 2015 Industry Dance Awards & Cancer Benefit Show. (Greatstock/Splash)
Vanessa Hudgens at the 2015 Industry Dance Awards & Cancer Benefit Show. (Greatstock/Splash)

Arizona — Authorities say actress Vanessa Hudgens can pay a fine and restitution or appear in court for allegedly carving a heart into red rock in Sedona two months ago.

Hudgens posted a photo of the carving, bearing the names Vanessa and Austin, on her Instagram around Valentine's Day.

???? @austinbutler #sedonadreams

A photo posted by Vanessa Hudgens (@vanessahudgens) on

It was brought to the attention of the Coconino National Forest, which manages land around Sedona renowned for the towering red rocks. Damaging a natural feature on US Forest Service land is a misdemeanour punishable by up to six months in jail and a maximum $5k fine.

Forest Service officials said on Tuesday that they contacted Hudgens, who "was cooperative in providing the specific location" of the carving.

They referred the investigation results to the US Attorney's Office in Flagstaff, which set a potential hearing date and contacted Hudgens.

Authorities say her options are to accept the agreement and pay an undisclosed fine and restitution or appear in court to answer to the misdemeanour violations of defacing and/or damaging natural features.

The 27-year-old Hudgens is best known for her role as Gabriella Montez in the High School Musical television show and movie.