Redmond O'Neal

Redmond O'Neal, the son of Farrah Fawcett and Ryan O'Neal, will take part in a drug rehabilitation program in hopes of avoiding prison.

O'Neal was ordered to participate in a yearlong intensive rehabilitation program Thursday. If he successfully completes it, he would be removed from probation and his drug-conviction record would be wiped clean. If he fails, O'Neal could face several years in prison.

The program involves frequent drug-testing, group counseling, court appearances and a 12-step program. O'Neal must also get a job.  

"This is an opportunity to change your life," Assistant District Attorney Tony Estradas said in court. "Our goal is for you to enjoy a long, healthy life that is free from addiction."

O'Neal, 24, who has been in custody since April 5 after violating the terms of his probation, also pleaded not guilty to a separate heroin possession charge.

Last weekend, O'Neal was granted temporarily leave from jail to visit his ailing mother, who is battling cancer.

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