Redmond O'Neal Headed Back to Rehab, Not Prison

After pleading no contest to gun and drug possession charges, the troubled son of Ryan O'Neal and the late Farrah Fawcett is spared more time in jail

Sounds like the judge has some sympathy for Redmond O'Neal. The son of actor Ryan O'Neal and the late Farrah Fawcett, O'Neal, 26, faced jail time after being arrested earlier this month for possession of heroin and a firearm -- but on Wednesday, O'Neal was instead sentenced to a year in rehab.

"We are pleased and grateful that the judge gave Redmond further treatment rather than incarceration," O'Neal's attorneys told People. "His history of addiction warrants this approach."

In order to strike a plea deal, O'Neal -- who has a history of drug-related legal problems -- pleaded no contest to the charges of drug and gun possession.

After Redmond's previous court hearing, father Ryan told the press that Redmond hadn't been the same since his mother Farrah's death in 2009. "He never recovered from the loss of his mother," said the 70-year-old Love Story actor. "That's the part that hurts the most. He doesn't know how to resolve it for himself, so he gets in trouble."

Redmond had been held without bail until Wednesday's hearing, and will now spend a year in inpatient treatment, plus five years' probation. His arrest, as the judge put it, is "part of an ongoing pattern." In 2009, the year of that his mother died, O'Neal was incarcerated for probation violation stemming from an earlier drug arrest. In 2010, he graduated from an intense court-ordered drug rehabilitation program, after which he declared his intention "to move forward with my life, clean and sober." But with or without the media spotlight, the road to sobriety can be challenging.

"He's an addict," half-sister Tatum O'Neal, who's had her own struggles with drugs, told reporters earlier this month. "Addicts keep using until they want to stop. We're praying for him every day."

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