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Al Gore Cleared by Portland Area DA of Masseuse's Sexual Misconduct Claims

5 years ago
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Citing a "lack of credible evidence," including conflicting witness statements, the Portland area district attorney declined on Friday to charge Vice President Al Gore with sexual misconduct as alleged by Oregon masseuse Molly Hagerty.

In two recent National Enquirer stories, Hagerty claimed Gore groped, fondled and forcibly kissed her during an October 2006 massage session in his Hotel Lucia suite while he was in Portland to give a speech. Hagerty, who originally refused to talk to police while deciding whether to file a civil suit against Gore, did not give the police her version of events until January 2009.

Earlier this month, Portland police interviewed Gore about the matter in San Francisco. He was with his attorneys, who had been given police questions in advance.

Gore "categorically denied" Hagerty's allegations, saying he was "completely baffled" by them, Multnomah County District Attorney Michael D. Schrunk said in an eight-page statement released Friday. The county includes Portland. Gore told the police he remembered nothing unusual about the session, which lasted nearly three hours and cost $540.

Gore family spokeswoman Kalee Kreider hailed Friday's decision not to go forward with the case, saying Gore "unequivocally and emphatically denied this accusation when he first learned of its existence three years ago. He respects and appreciates the thorough and professional work of the Portland authorities and is pleased that this matter has now been resolved."

National Enquirer executive editor Barry Levine, who refused to tell me earlier this month whether or how much Hagerty might have been paid for her story, declined to discuss Friday's development. "We've made the decision not to comment," he said in an e-mail. Kohel Haver, Hagerty's lawyer who specializes in entertainment and media matters, did not return two call to his office.

When the Enquirer stories broke, the Portland Police Bureau reopened the case, interviewing Gore, Hagerty, her friends, her ex-husband, fellow massage therapists and hotel staff, among others. The masseuse earlier took her story to the Portland Tribune, which in November 2008 chose not to publish an article because, Schrunk said, its investigation "raises credibility concerns about Ms. Hagerty."

Schrunk's press release said he backed the police findings that "a sustainable criminal case does not exist." While Hagerty's allegations, if true, would constitute a sexual offense under state law, her detailed statement "is insufficient to support a criminal charge given other contradictory evidence, conflicting witness statements, credibility issues, lack of forensic evidence and denials by Mr. Gore."

Among discrepancies Schrunk noted: A call by the red-headed Hagerty to Gore shortly after the alleged incident, during which she told him to " 'dream of redheaded women tonight,' seemingly in contradiction to her assertions that she was terrified of Mr. Gore." Hagerty told detectives she used this language because she feared Gore was angry with her. She hoped he would take the events "to the dream world so he would be less likely to complain to the hotel staff," and thus jeopardize her business there, Schrunk wrote. Gore told the police he has no recollection of that call. Hagerty also called the hotel to thank management for the Gore referral, with no mention of unwanted sexual advances.

Schrunk noted that forensic testing of the black trousers Hagerty wore that night -- which she kept in a plastic bag in a safety deposit box because she thought they might contain incriminating Gore DNA -- "are negative for the presence of seminal fluid."

Although the police did not give her a polygraph test, which are questionable measures of credibility, Hagerty's civil lawyer, Judy Snyder, arranged for her to take one. Hagerty failed it, but in disclosing its existence to the police, Snyder "asked the detectives not to document that failure in their reports," Schrunk said. The police requested copies of the polygraph, but none were forthcoming. They also were not given medical reports that could buttress Hagerty's claim of physical injury as she tried to wrestle Gore off her. A call to Snyder's office was referred to Haver.

Other influencing factors, according to the district attorney's statement: "It appears Ms. Hagerty was paid by the National Enquirer for her story; and Mr. Gore voluntarily met with detectives and denied all of the allegations."

The Enquirer has also published allegations of unwanted sexual advances by two other masseuses who worked on Gore; both remain unidentified, as do the hotels in Beverly Hills and Tokyo. "Although outside of this jurisdiction, the complaints, if true, could potentially be used as evidence here," Schrunk wrote. "Mr. Gore strongly denied these newly reported allegations."

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July 31 2010 at 8:35 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply

Good old Al was lucky that the police provides his attorneys the questions that they were going to ask before they interrogated him. What is this country coming to????

Earlier this month, Portland police interviewed Gore about the matter in San Francisco. He was with his attorneys, who had been given police questions in advance.

July 31 2010 at 8:33 PM Report abuse +5 rate up rate down Reply
Sonja Dunbar

We all love to see the elite fall. Tiger Woods is an example of when the accusations were true, but that isn't always the case, so in Al Gore's case, we shouldn't have immediately thought he was guilty. It would have gone along with the fact that he and Tippy recently separated and we were all wondering why. Could the accusation have been the reason?? But, sounds as if the massage therapist just thought the moment was right for her to bring up her accusations again, hoping this time she'd be thought to be telling the truth, but guess that isn't the case. Famous men have to worry about women trying to either make a name for themselves or get a lot of money when they accuse famous men of sexual misconduct, because people love to believe it.

July 31 2010 at 7:07 PM Report abuse +2 rate up rate down Reply

Declining to prosecute and "CLEARED" are two differnt thing except if you are a member of the liberal media.

July 31 2010 at 4:34 PM Report abuse +5 rate up rate down Reply
b.f.k. sr

interesting use of words. why " AVOIDS " . obviously to infer some shenanigans were involved in no charges being filed.

July 31 2010 at 2:31 PM Report abuse +8 rate up rate down Reply
Oat is the Man

Let me guess the DA is not a Republican huh?

July 31 2010 at 2:27 PM Report abuse -11 rate up rate down Reply

She failed 2 polygraph test.

July 31 2010 at 2:18 PM Report abuse +4 rate up rate down Reply
Linda K

I believe the DA's office made the right decision given the information in the story. Since her attorney was unavaiable for comment, I can't help but think the allegations were false. Women who make false accusations are a disgrace, leading some people to think that most women make up sexual criminal charges. Luckily, very few women are willing to stoop this low just to make money.

July 31 2010 at 12:56 PM Report abuse +12 rate up rate down Reply

Personaly, I can't honestly say weather Gore did, or didn't,I wasn't there, noone else here was either. His word against hers. If the woman made a call a few days later,that seems to me she's contradicting her own testimony. To easy for a woman to say, "He touched my breast." The male now has to prove he didn't. Why not let a lie detector be admisable. Other case's allow them. Keep the faulse cases out of the courts. This is why I think rape victoms are treated like liars in the court room. Sad to see this type of thing going on, but it happens. His divorce has nothing to do with this, so why is it being brought up?? Let the Judge and jury deside guilt or innocence, not the articles in the paper, or hearsay.

July 31 2010 at 11:54 AM Report abuse +8 rate up rate down Reply

Funny how the headline says Gore was "cleared" but the article only says the charges were dropped because of they didn't feel they had enough evidence. There's a BIG difference. Bill Clinton wasn't convicted for what he did with Monica, but he certainly wasn't "cleared". If this guy were a Republican, we would be getting a completely differant spin.

July 31 2010 at 11:51 AM Report abuse +15 rate up rate down Reply
3 replies to grassyno's comment

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