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Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Cameron Douglas Gets 5 Years

Cameron Douglas (AP Photo/Chris Pizzello File)
The Douglas family has been in the news a lot lately because of Cameron Douglas' addiction and subsequently his most recent arrest. Cameron Douglas, 31, the son of film icon Michael Douglas, has struggled with drugs since he was thirteen years old; as his addiction progressed over the years and he began using heroin his family finally had to draw a line and cut off Cameron financially when he refused to go to treatment, as so many families have to do. Unfortunately, a family's love can end up being an addict's number one support line, which only aids in the progression of the disease. In 2006, Cameron began dealing methamphetamine in order to feed his addiction; only four years later he was looking at 10 years in prison.

Last July, Cameron Douglas was arrested at a Manhattan hotel and in January he admitted to dealing methamphetamine and cocaine. Douglas pleaded guilty to a serious crime, a drug charge that carried a mandatory 10 years in prison. Naturally, Cameron Douglas is not looking to sit in prison for 10 years and his family is doing everything in their power to support him. Michael Douglas wrote a 5-page elegantly scripted letter to the judge trying to expound on his son's life and his family's history, one riddled with drug addiction and alcoholism; letters were also sent forth by Cameron's grandfather Kirk Douglas, stepmother Catherine Zeta-Jones, and NBA executive Pat Riley.

"I have some idea of the pressure of finding your own identity with a famous father," wrote the "Wall Street" Oscar winning actor Michael Douglas, the son of Kirk Douglas the star of "Spartacus". "I'm not sure I can comprehend it with two generations to deal with". "He is an adult and responsible for his own actions," Douglas wrote. "We do know, however, that genes, family and peer pressure are a strong influence on a substance abuser".

Cameron Douglas was sentenced yesterday, despite his family's pleas he was ordered to serve five years.

Here is Cameron's full statement:

"Firstly, I would like to apologize to my family and my loved ones for putting them through this nightmare of my making -- and for my behaviors that have caused a rift between us in the past.

I would also like to apologize to the Court for my decisions and my actions that put me in front of you here today, your Honor.

But, I would like to ask you for an opportunity to be a productive family member and a good role model to my brothers and sisters during this time in their life when they're maturing from small children to young men and women so I can be there for them for whatever may occur in their lives; for advice, guidance, support, or just somebody to talk to and maybe be able to steer them in the right direction.

Nothing, your Honor, is more important to me than my family and the goals that I have set for myself and I feel adamant that I will not let myself be led astray by my warped thinking and false pretenses due to my long heroin addiction. I envelope my mind, instead, with the idea that I want to take the right path, the true path and the path that I know is well within my reach. And I know this because I was presented with some opportunities earlier in my life and at the time I didn't -- I wasn't able to see how valuable they were and how rare they were. As a result, I squandered a lot of them which was, you know, probably started, you know, where I am today; a lot of mistakes and missed opportunities, you know?

I miss, so dearly, being involved in my true passion in life which brings me true happiness and fulfillment which is being an entertainer and putting a smile on people's faces or stirring some sort of emotion inside of them; ultimately trying to inspire people in some way whether it was through dancing as a youngster or hopefully music and acting in the future.

I believe, your Honor, that things will be different this time because, number one, most importantly, I feel that I have the full support of my family and the people that are important in my life; number two, because obviously I know where this life can go and if I should be so fortunate to have another chance, I would never squander that opportunity because I know how fruitful my life can be; and thirdly, I will never settle for anything less than what I know myself to be capable of. I feel like it is my duty. And that's all I have to say."

The statement apparently worked. The judge gave Cameron Douglas 5 years in prison - half the minimum required sentence."

His statement was obtained by The New York Post.

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