July 30th, 2007
04:35 PM ET
9 years ago

Al Gore's son pleads guilty to drug charges

Al Gore III, right, appears with his father, former Vice President Al Gore, and mother, Tipper, at the Oscars in February.

LOS ANGELES (CNN) – Al Gore III pleaded guilty Monday to felony and misdemeanor drug possession charges stemming from his arrest earlier in July when he was pulled over for allegedly driving more than 100 mph in a Toyota Prius.

An Orange County Sheriff's deputy reported that he could smell marijuana when he approached the car. After conducting a search, the deputy found a small amount of marijuana and prescription pills - including Adderall, Vicodin, Xanax and Valium - all without a prescription.

Gore, 24, was charged with two felony counts of possession of a controlled substance, two misdemeanor counts of possessing a controlled substance without a prescription, one misdemeanor count of possession of marijuana and a traffic infraction.

Farrah Emami of the Orange County District Attorney’s Office said the son of former Vice President Al Gore agreed to enter a 90-day residential drug treatment program.

Senior Deputy District Attorney Jaime Coulter told the Associated Press that if Gore successfully completed the drug treatment program the sentencing could be continued for another year and that charges may be dropped in 2009.

"At that point, he will be able to withdraw his guilty plea as if he never entered it," Coulter told the AP.

Gore’s next court date is scheduled for February 7, 2008.

- CNN Assignment Editor Karan Olson

Filed under: Al Gore
soundoff (98 Responses)
  1. Mark Bures, Rio de Janeiro, RJ

    Any normal citizen would suffer the full wrath of the law and face years of jail time, at a minimum, not to mention public scorn. However, as always, the Fortunate Sons find a way to get off.

    This guy could have killed someone.

    July 30, 2007 03:29 pm at 3:29 pm |
  2. brownsville texas

    two felonies and only rehab. texas he would have gotten two years. Why I love our legal system...its so fair to all involved. duh

    July 30, 2007 03:33 pm at 3:33 pm |
  3. steve carbone

    he shouldn't even do 1 hour in a treatment center. There just a scam, like alot of other systems in this country.

    July 30, 2007 03:33 pm at 3:33 pm |
  4. Dave, Peachtree city GA

    What a load of BS!! If I did the same crime tomorrow they would toss me in the cell, probably lose the key for years to come, find me guilty of all of it and lock me up for 5 more years. After which, I could get out, not get a job because who would hire me then, and start the whole process over. And with a bad record. This gore kid can do it all and plead guilty yet still come out smelling of roses. Gotta love this country

    July 30, 2007 03:46 pm at 3:46 pm |
  5. Independent Voter, TN

    Poor, pitiful son of Gore. God forbid he would get any real punishment, even though he is a repeat offender (this is his fourth run-in with the law for similar offenses on the past 6 years).

    O.J. justice is alive and well in CA.

    July 30, 2007 03:56 pm at 3:56 pm |
  6. Will - Miami, Fl

    Are you going to post it or should I put it up on YouTube and show people how you censor Ron Paul supporters that make valid points?

    July 30, 2007 03:58 pm at 3:58 pm |
  7. Dana, Lafayette, LA

    And they say the media isn't liberal...

    Are you kidding me? This kid shouldn't have been offered a deal. This is his 4th arrest! He should be doing time AND rehab (NOT PROMISES in CA). Didn't the world turn upside down when those Bush gals got busted with a fake ID? This certainly trumps a fake ID. This kid is on the path to SERIOUS destruction. 140 Vicodin...seriously...are you kidding me? Ridiculous. Why isn't the media hounding this story? Perhaps if this was one of those Bush twins instead of Al Gore's offspring, we'd hear about it for the next 3 months.

    At the very least, report with the same vigor REGARDLESS of you political preference!

    July 30, 2007 03:58 pm at 3:58 pm |
  8. Anonymous

    I am wonder, how we can trust to run the contry to the person who can't raise good his own kid

    July 30, 2007 04:00 pm at 4:00 pm |
  9. P, Cville

    Must be nice being a vice presidents son. Anyone else would be branded a convicted felon.

    July 30, 2007 04:02 pm at 4:02 pm |
  10. B, Charlotte NC

    1 year of prison for 2 felonies and 4 misdemeanors? I know he's Al Gore's kid but doesn't that seem a little light?

    July 30, 2007 04:07 pm at 4:07 pm |
  11. Bob, Pasadena MD

    Dave's wrong. Not even close. People with no history of trouble, and absent violence get treated like this. If you don't believe me, spend some time in your local District Court. I worked in one, and it's free entertainment.

    July 30, 2007 04:10 pm at 4:10 pm |
  12. D.A., Newark, DE

    Only in America do we get upset when someone who is addicted to drugs gets to go through rehab and doesn't get sent to jail with violent crime offenders. Talk about a sad nation.

    July 30, 2007 04:12 pm at 4:12 pm |
  13. kay-ohio

    Wow there are so many people in the USA that have done lesser crimes but have been branded for life. Must be nice-two faces of justices.

    July 30, 2007 04:16 pm at 4:16 pm |
  14. Brian A., Arlington, VA

    Al Gore should have put his kids keys to the Prius in the "lockbox". I guess he won't be running for President after all. HAHA

    July 30, 2007 04:19 pm at 4:19 pm |
  15. Scott Austin, TX

    Whoa! The Prius can do 100mph? I had no idea! Now that's news!

    July 30, 2007 04:28 pm at 4:28 pm |
  16. Jeff, Brunswick, GA

    Didn't Tipper have all the perfect parenting answers back in the 80's for raising fine young children? As long as you could put a warning sticker on a Rap CD, everyone was supposed to be OK. NOT!

    July 30, 2007 04:33 pm at 4:33 pm |
  17. Muddym MA

    If you don't like his father, don't attack the son instead.

    The difference in treatment of those arrested varies wildly from state to state. Ca arrests are far different form those in Ala, and if you don't like how Ala treats suspects and 1st time offenders elect different people. The State of Ma's police in general were far more capable and understanding of a mental ill person I know, and the state system in MA was able to get the boy treatment, instead of locking up like other states, and thus ending society problems with the young man.

    He was caught with a small amount of pot in a different state from his past convictions. Everyone I know gets a second chance, and third chance in those cases. In fact, I have seen multiple people caught with small amounts of pots, and have the police simply take the pot.

    In my experience offenses in other states don't effect the punishment in other states, often the judge would never know about them for minor offensives. I know of lots of cases where people were able to wipe clean minor drug offensives, and none of the people were rich.

    July 30, 2007 04:36 pm at 4:36 pm |
  18. Tom - Dedham, Mass

    Where are the usual liberal suspects on this SITE who would be all over this if it were aghast, a Republican?

    Come on out, spin this kiddies.

    I tried to take the "high" road, but did anyone notice that CNN left out all the previous infractions?

    I thank all of you that took all of five minutes to do the research.

    This is a travesty, I wonder if it will make the nightly news, let's watch ABC,NBC,PBS,CBS,MSNBC etc, etc and see how fair and balanced they are with this.

    July 30, 2007 04:44 pm at 4:44 pm |
  19. Brian A. Arlington, VA

    D.A. Where are you coming from dude? Only in America? Do some research and find out what happens in other countries for driving under the influence. Al Junior coulda killed someone and "woe is me...I am an addict" or not he deserves a conviction and sometime behind bars. Keep bad mouthing the country fool.

    July 30, 2007 04:44 pm at 4:44 pm |
  20. Anonymous

    If the average citizen had been arrested for the same charges, how many of us would have been afforded the opportunity to enter a 90-day drug treatment program versus prison? How many people would raise their hands to the fact that WE would get prison! What a crock justice system this country has!

    July 30, 2007 04:48 pm at 4:48 pm |
  21. Anne E. Salt Lake City

    I hope that all those who are so quick to criticize Al III are EQUALLY critical of Paris Hilton and Linday Lohan, as all infractions occurred in in the same city, by the same law enforcement agency. I voted for Al Gore in '00 and if he even BREATHES the word "candidate," I'll vote for him again. I'm not going to be so close-minded, narrow-minded or shallow as to associate the sins of the son with the father/parents. It's all about choices and consequences, folks.
    And toward that end, yes Al III should get himself the help he needs; I'm sure his family will be there to support him....but the person has to acknowledge the problem and admit needing help.
    How many of your own children have walked the straight and narrow?? ALL parents are in some sort of "spotlight," even if it's no more than in their own community.

    July 30, 2007 04:56 pm at 4:56 pm |
  22. Matt, Chicago, IL

    So let me get this straight. His father, Mr. straight laced Al Gore applied some pressure and his son, on not his first infraction is getting special treatment and will walk away scott free?
    Amazing-and the Democrats say the Republicans don't believe in the law in this country!
    I am disgusted-
    Big mistake Al. You just keep on assailing your own credibility with stupidity.

    July 30, 2007 05:14 pm at 5:14 pm |
  23. Gregory Goodner Oroville Ca

    I think folks sould leave ol' Al alone. He,s doing whats right for the world at large. Why go after his son because the powers that be don't want to respond to his charges. We all know that it's real talk.

    July 30, 2007 05:15 pm at 5:15 pm |
  24. Willy Brown

    He completes the treatment and it may be wiped off the books. If his daddy was a republican you at CNN would be howling over the special treatment. Is this bias or what?

    July 30, 2007 05:15 pm at 5:15 pm |
  25. daron, new haven, ct

    He wasn't USING drugs at the time or that would have been another charge mentioned. Stop reading into the article.

    Also, while I agree that inner city youths wouldn't be treated this way, I would say that a lot of kids would be. I knew a few kids growing up that were caught with drugs and it didn't go on their record if they stayed clean for a certain amount of time and went to rehab. They weren't rich or famous, just normal suburban kids. Everyone should be treated this way. It would be one thing if he was using and driving. If he was doing that, he should be punished more harshly.

    July 30, 2007 05:34 pm at 5:34 pm |
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