PORTLAND, Ore. (CBS/AP) Al Gore's camp says they welcome a renewed investigation by Portland police into allegations made by massage therapist Molly Hagerty that the former Vice President, and global warming crusader, made unwanted sexual advances towards her.
Gore spokeswoman Kalee Krieder said that Gore "unequivocally and emphatically" denied the allegations that first surfaced over three years ago, and that he stands by that statement. She added that "further investigation into this matter will only benefit Mr. Gore."
Portland police announced Wednesday that they are reopening their investigation into Hagerty's claims that Gore groped, kissed, and pinned her down on a bed, during a massage appointment on Oct. 24, 2006, at a downtown Portland hotel.
Police spokeswoman Mary Wheat would not elaborate on why the police department decided to reopen the case, after investigators twice closed it due to insufficient evidence. However, the decision came one day after Hagerty revealed her identity to the National Enquirer and claimed to have some potentially damning forensic evidence, including a pair of stained pants and a half eaten candy bar, that she says she kept in a safe deposit box.
Police originally closed the case in 2007 citing insufficient evidence after Hagerty, who came to them late 2006 to report the incident, canceled multiple subsequent interviews with investigators. The last interview was canceled by her lawyer who informed police at the time that the matter was going to be handled civilly.
The case was reopened in 2009 when Hagerty again contacted police and gave a taped statement about the incident where she apparently told the investigators that Gore was acting like a "crazed sex poodle" and said that she felt trapped because she thought if she tried to leave she "could or would be violently accosted by some security detail."
But after that interview investigators decided there still wasn't enough evidence to go forward with an all-out investigation -- until now.