NPR logo Portland Police Say They Will Investigate Sex Assault Charge Against Al Gore

Portland Police Say They Will Investigate Sex Assault Charge Against Al Gore

The Portland Oregonian is reporting that the Portland police department has announced it will "re-open and investigate" a massage therapist's allegations that former Vice President Al Gore sexually assaulted her at a hotel in October 2006.

The allegation had been made public for more than a week now, with the National Enquirer providing the details.  Initially, the police said that because the woman, identified as Molly Hagerty, failed to press charges, there would be no case.  Now she is demanding a full police investigation, and the police department has apparently complied.

According to the Oregonian's account, Hagerty filed a complaint two months after the alleged incident, "but then refused to meet with detectives on three occasions. Then in January 2009, she presented a detailed statement to Portland sexual assault investigators":

She told investigators that Gore groped her, kissed her and made unwanted sexual advances during a late-night massage session in a suite at the upscale Hotel Lucia. She said she told two friends and kept the clothes she wore that night, including her black pants with stains on them. But Portland police didn’t contact any of the woman’s friends, obtain the potential evidence or interview anyone at the hotel, records show.

The Multnomah Co. district attorney's office had no new comment, instead referring to a previous statement by the D.A.: "If the complainant and the Portland Police Bureau wish to pursue the possibility of a criminal prosecution, additional investigation by the Bureau will be necessary and will be discussed with the Portland Police Bureau."

Kalee Kreider, a Gore family spokeswoman, released a statement that said in part:

The Gores cannot comment on every defamatory, misleading, and inaccurate story generated by tabloids.  Mr. Gore unequivocally and emphatically denied this accusation when he first learned of its existence three years ago. He stands by that denial.

Al Gore and his wife Tipper announced on June 1 they were separating after 40 years of marriage.