Could Mel Gibson End Up in Jail?

A sheriff's investigation is reportedly gathering evidence of criminal domestic violence

Although Whoopi Goldberg may hesitate to agree, we think the three leaked tapes of Mel Gibson threatening and belittling ex-girlfriend Oksana Grigorieva make it clear that he's a controlling, abusive, woman-hating racist. Too bad treating your girlfriend like crap isn't a felony. Oh wait -- it is!

The Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department is investigating Gibson for charges of domestic violence, assault with a deadly weapon and child endangerment; the first charge alone could land him one to four years in jail. On Monday, the LAPD said that they would be using Grigorieva's now-infamous audio tapes as evidence. Now they've moved on to seeking out witnesses: namely, Oksana's dentist (who treated her after Gibson allegedly damaged her teeth in a brawl) and her 12-year-old son.

Last week, when the allegations surfaced that Gibson may have knocked his ex's teeth out during a violent argument earlier this year, we speculated that it would be pretty easy to prove that claim in a court of law. Turns out we were right: according to TMZ, dentist Dr. Ross Sheldon has images of Grigorieva's missing and chipped teeth photographed after the couple's Jan. 6 altercation.

As for Grigorieva's 12-year-old son (from her first marriage to actor Timothy Dalton), TMZ says the boy reportedly didn't actually witness his mother get hit during the incident in question. However, he could testify to Gibson's treatment of his mother and any previous violence he's aware of. He also may have been close enough to the Jan. 6 fight to have heard something, or seen the aftermath -- which would make him an extremely valuable witness.

If the recordings are admissable as evidence, they contain both unambiguous threats of violence ("You need a f***ing bat int he side of the head", "I'll put you in a f*cking rose garden") and this damning exchange, which confirms previous physical abuse:

Oksana: What kind of a man is that? Hitting a woman when she’s holding a child in her hands? Breaking her teeth twice in the face! What kind of man is that?

Mel: Oh, you’re all angry now! You know what, you f***ing deserved it!

There may seemingly be no way out for Gibson at this point, but there are a couple things working against Grigorieva if this case reaches criminal court. For one thing, she waited six months to file an abuse claim, which may cause the courts to question her motive. And according to lawyers quoted by Fox News, if Gibson has no pattern or history of abuse, he may be able to paint this as an isolated incident. Which makes us wonder: will other women from Gibson's past start coming forward?

Do you think Mel Gibson should go to jail? Chime in below!

Like This? Read These:
- Your iVillage Flash Poll Results Are In! Will You Watch Mel Gibson Movies Again?
- Will Mel Gibson Ever Work Again?
- Mel Gibson Investigated for Domestic Violence
- Mel Gibson's Violent, Racist Tirade Caught on Tape
- Did Mel Gibson Knock His Girlfriend's Teeth Out?

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