A Father’s Worst Nightmare: How Sober Robert Downey Jr. Couldn’t Save His Own Son From Drug Addiction — ‘It’s Heartbreaking,’ Says Source

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Jun. 30 2014, Published 1:35 p.m. ET

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Robert Downey Jr. was able to save himself from the ravages of addiction, and now as an active member of the sober community in Hollywood, he helps others find their way out of the horror of drug use. But has exclusively learned that despite his best efforts, he couldn’t stop his oldest child, Indio, from falling victim to the same disease he’s battled his whole life.

Indio, 20, was arrested on Sunday afternoon for suspicion of possession of a controlled substance, believed to be cocaine. He was released on $10,250 bail shortly after 9 p.m., and will be back in court on August 29.

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Now, a source tells Radar that his famous dad "isn't surprised that Indio was arrested because he has been dealing with this drug addiction for awhile. He is thankful no one was injured and thinks the arrest could actually help Indio finally decide to get serious about going to rehab and getting clean.”

And should Indio decide he wants help, he couldn’t have a better mentor than his eleven-years-sober dad. "Bob has been extremely active in his recovery, and can always be found at an AA meeting counseling others in the beginning stages of their sobriety,” the insider reveals. "It's not unusual for Bob to go to a meeting everyday, sometimes twice a day. This is what he has to do to stay sober.”

As such, "He has the tools and resources to help Indio,” the source says. "It's heartbreaking to watch his son go thru this, but he is extremely supportive and loves his son, and will do whatever it takes to get him the help he needs. However, Bob also recognizes that he can't force Indio to seek help, and that he has to want to do it."

Police detained the 20-year-old Sunday after they saw he was smoking a pipe while behind the wheel, eventually finding the contraband while inspecting his vehicle.

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As Radar previously reported, Indio last year sought help for an addiction to pain pills, undergoing “holistic, natural and orthomolecular” therapy to rid himself of the addiction in rehab, his mother Deborah Falconer said.

Naturally, the story calls to mind his 49-year-old father’s drug-addled days of the 1990s, when the actor was repeatedly arrested and jailed for drug-related offenses.

Downey married Falconer in 1992, but she left him in 1996 and took Indio with her after he was arrested for drug possession, DUI and possession of a concealed weapon.

More arrests and rehab stints followed for Downey before he finally landed in state prison where he spent a year behind bars. He was arrested twice more, but sobered up for good in 2001 and has since remarried and had son.

The talented star thankfully cleaned his act up for good in 2001, and staged one of the most remarkable career turnarounds in Hollywood history.

In fact, our source adds, "Bob's friends often encourage him to publicly talk about all of the work he does to help others in recovery, and he always shuts it down. He doesn't do it for the publicity, but genuinely because he wants to help others. The addiction to drugs almost killed him, and he recognizes that, and wants to prevent that from happening to someone else."



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