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July 29th, 2009
03:26 PM ET

Doctor suffering financially when he decided to work for Jackson

[cnn-photo-caption image="http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/SHOWBIZ/Music/07/29/conrad.murray/art.conrad.murray.undated.jpg" caption="Dr. Conrad Murray was with Michael Jackson on the day that he died."]

Mallory Simon
CNN

Dr. Conrad Murray was suffering financially with nearly $435,000 in judgments and liens against him over the past two years, according to court documents. Then he decided to leave his practice and work for Michael Jackson, getting paid $150,000 a month.

Before working with the King of Pop, Murray spent most of his time operating clinics in both Nevada and Texas after graduating from Meharry Medical College, a historically black school in Nashville, Tennessee, in 1989. He spent his internship and residency years in California.

At the clinics in Houston, Texas, and Las Vegas, Nevada, his patients had been surprised to learn that he would be leaving his private practice to work with Jackson. Watch profile of Dr. Conrad Murray »

Many told news outlets they support their former physician as he faces scrutiny by authorities investigating Jackson's death.

Keep reading...


Filed under: Michael Jackson
soundoff (27 Responses)
  1. Donna Wood, Lil' Tennessee

    I was pretty sure this situation would turn out like it has.It's sad in such a large way. Mr. Jackson probably thought Dr. Murray was being his friend and perhaps Dr. Murray thought Mr. Jackson was doing him a big favor. But two wrongs just never add up to a right. Dr. Murray should never allowed himself to get into such a desperate financial situation and Mr. Jackson was way out of line asking for what he was asking for. A very sad situation! I don't think the outcome is going to be very good for anyone including Mr. Jackson's reputation! I think maybe we had better pay attention to this situation and hopefully learn something from it.

    Donna Wood
    Lexington, Tennessee

    July 30, 2009 at 10:11 am |
  2. Joanne R. Pacicca

    Many physicians make more than $150,000 a month.

    July 30, 2009 at 9:30 am |
  3. dottie

    correction typo.evident. DR> Murray got rid of evidence....sign of proof..
    proof of guilt. rid of data,and verification.....on the disc.

    July 30, 2009 at 8:20 am |
  4. dottie

    l dont know who? was behind this Dr. Conrad Murray:
    were he a hit man hired by the mobster?because l really
    do believe that he had a motive . money, Michael were more
    vauable dead and he was alived.The jackson family are
    very suspicious of this Doctors Murray and his inner circle.
    why were the disc on the security camera , with valid information on it: deleted, the disc , show
    what really took place in the home & on the ground for
    the last 30 minutes.without a doubt,the F.B.I and La. policeman should
    investigate everyone that were in that manison when Michael
    death took place on june 25-09: l think.this guy defintely has something to hide.
    why did he have some people that work for
    him cleaning out a warehouse in texas,to get rid of evident.Central time
    he also got rid of evident with the security camera disc.pacific time.
    as stated by the family that 2 millions dollars were stolen
    as well as M.J luxury jewel disappear from the manison.
    these people tamper with evident, big time.
    yeah! l'm just like the others blogger this is a smoking gun.
    lock his A$$ up.and find those others goons, that are
    involved.
    Michael told his big sister: they're trying to killed me
    for my music catalog & publish. he didn't trust those
    people that were around him. did Dr. Murray really think
    he can get away with it. l say to the official make him talk
    .ask who hired him?

    July 30, 2009 at 8:05 am |
  5. paul corti

    i am a 50 year old ,recovering drug addict. my biggest dealers were my doctors. Two of my previous docters lost thier liscences to practice for this reason. I don't think people realize how much of this is going on in america. Anyone can walk into a doctors office. with cash. and walk out with a prescription.
    Forget about insurance, they love dealing in cash! Several doctors are in bussiness, and set up shop for this kind of operation. I could give lists in Nevada, Florida and New York. I don't think the average person knows whats going on. The Michael Jackson case does not surprise me. I could shed lots of light on this subject. Take it from someone who's been there.

    July 30, 2009 at 2:03 am |
  6. Mary from LA.

    Katherine:

    All this Jackson news will be shown for yrs. to come and until
    the exact cause and time of death is given, it will not slow down
    in the least...

    Too many people need and want to know.
    You are in the minority unfortunately!

    July 30, 2009 at 1:54 am |
  7. Mary from LA.

    Do we not recall that initially Dr. Murray asked to get paid
    about 2 million and had to settle for the 150K a month?

    He figured out a plan to get more money knowing Michael
    could not pull off the tour. The tour was a gamble for
    Dr. Murray, but the many drug addictions Michael has had
    for too long was a sure bet for Murray to get paid the amount he
    initially wanted...
    The Coroner will be giving the exact time of death and it will be
    the early a.m. hours, I am certain of this!!!

    July 30, 2009 at 1:52 am |
  8. Mary from LA.

    Manslaughter all the way....

    For the insurance money that Dr. Murray needed so badly,
    look at his mounting debt and numeorus judgements against him
    to date.

    July 30, 2009 at 1:48 am |
  9. Mike, Syracuse, NY

    $150K per month; yup he was really slumming it.

    July 29, 2009 at 8:52 pm |
  10. Annie Kate

    The complete facts have not been disclosed in this case so we really can't in all fairness say the doctor is at fault until evidence is presented that ties him to the death. As for motive, I would think if one thought the money the doctor was getting from Jackson was not a motive because with Jackson gone, the salary and perks stop – his estate pays creditors and then splits what left up with the beneficiaries. Hopefully the details will come out sooner rather than later and we will know if it was foul play or doctor incompetence or just bad luck. Until that time its all speculation.

    July 29, 2009 at 8:18 pm |
  11. elZorro

    Dear 'susan':

    You already have 'put your foot in your mouth'!... Cause, if you believe that racial profiling does not happen in United States of America, you must, also, believe that 'Peter Pan' does exist!... And by the way, the United States is the only country in the AMERICAN Continent where racism is alive and well...

    July 29, 2009 at 7:37 pm |
  12. William of Iowa

    It baffles me that a man can earn his way into medical school, make it academically and be a board certified medical doctor, then go on to run clinics and develope a reputation good enough to attract someone like Jackson and not be able to balance a checkbook.

    July 29, 2009 at 7:37 pm |
  13. chyna from the slopes of brooklyn

    Doctors are suppose to take an oath and for him to do this is another examples of how doctors in this country succumb to greed and money. All they do is feed the addicts addiction...

    another thing what about the security team that work for michael?
    we havent heard about them. my heart goes to the kids

    July 29, 2009 at 7:19 pm |
  14. S. Mack - St. Louis

    So... let's put it all together.... Jackson dying around 8:30AM... He cranks the heat in the room to cover the time of death.... Calls his assistants at 9:00AM to remove all documentation from storage units ... Removes any medications that implicate him aside from the obvious that he knew toxicology would find... Once document destruction is confirmed, he calls... EMS at 12:22 .... Smoking gun.. 911 call... Anyone trained in CPR knows to move the person to the floor! He is performing CPR with Jackson on the BED!.... He knew at this point it was useless...

    Why? Malpractice insurance doesn't cover Jail time. Murder not so easy to confirm, Conspiracy to conceal a crime?

    It's an obvious cover- Thoughts?

    July 29, 2009 at 7:07 pm |
  15. susan

    No doctor is a saint. On the other hand, it is rare to have a full satan as well.

    From stories, this guy had expensive tastes and couldnt keep things under wraps (paternity suits etc). He got into financial difficulties and these then began to become the driving force in decisions – such as this ultimate concierge medical practice to Michael Jackson.

    At this point, I do not have access to the facts that are known at this date. And I certainly dont have "all" the facts. So, I will not follow President Obama's suit and put my foot in my mouth. I would recommend that others also learn from that "stupidly" remark and refrain from hasty judgment. (Unless you are in the "Shoot First, Ask Questions Later" school.)

    July 29, 2009 at 6:49 pm |
  16. Kattherine

    Please, Anderson – PLEASE!! No more Michael Jackson "news."

    July 29, 2009 at 6:47 pm |
  17. jay

    here is the smoking gun Why did Dr. Conrad Murray wait for someone else to come on the scene before 911 was called. if you listen closely in the 911 tape the 911 operator asked the caller did he see what happen the caller stated no keep in mind Dr. Murray is an trained person who specializes or is familiar with the drug being used and its effect it had on Michael Jackson's body.The doctor would know how long it takes to get emergency medical personnel or EMS to be called to the scene of the incident. It seems like to me when Michael Jackson lost consciousness the doctor was more worried about his career than he was his own client.As a doctor you certainly know when a person should be sent to the emergency room. I still think this is manslaughter unless you can tie in the $435,000 then you would have motive and murder.
    When Dr. Conrad Murray chose to use drugs only to be used in the emergency room he knew the risk he was taking he knew he crossed the line he did not adhere to the oath to become a doctor.
    A message needs to be sent to all person in the medical field if you abuse your position you need to lose your medical license and not be allowed to work in any American medical facility.He or she should be banned to practice medicine in all 50 states in the U.S

    July 29, 2009 at 6:32 pm |
  18. Anthony Ching

    If you follow the money, you've found the murderer.

    July 29, 2009 at 6:20 pm |
  19. Brown

    This Doctor belongs in jail. Why are some people defending this man especially the media

    July 29, 2009 at 6:09 pm |
  20. Wynoma Hollis

    The love of money is the root of ALL EVIL.

    Wynoma

    July 29, 2009 at 5:34 pm |
  21. Sheila

    Just thinking, if this doctor was such a great cardiologist, then, how could he not have known that you don't do compressions on a bed! Just thinking.

    July 29, 2009 at 5:25 pm |
  22. Nancy

    His day will come in court and the truth will prevail. Did he take Michael Jackson's life and was it intentional or lack of medical knowledge?

    July 29, 2009 at 5:21 pm |
  23. Catherine

    This is a tragic story on many levels.

    If only the doctor had told Michael Jackson no, the ending would have been so different. But Mr. Jackson would have found a new doctor who wanted money more than integrity.

    Dr. Murray could have done so much good in his communities but all he cared about was money and fame. Now, he is infamous like Elvis' Dr. Nick.

    July 29, 2009 at 5:18 pm |
  24. Tina Oden

    I think this is a clear case of murder or at least a cover up. Here you a cardiologist who speacilizes in conditions of the heart. There is no way this physician did not know the moment Micheal Jackson died. And trust me, it was way before the ambulance was called. He did not try to revive MJ in the bed, because he knew that MJ was already dead. This physician has the ability to pronouce a person dead. He did not need the paramedics or hospital personel to declare that MJ was dead. I bet the things that Murray are trying to cover up will come out soon. Check his phone records prior to the ambulance being called I bet it was to the ladies that went to his storage room 3 hours prior to the ambulance being called. Now we are hearing about his finacial issues. Dr. Murray also knows that giving MJ Propofol was illegal and immoral. But he allowed greed to cause him to use poor judgement. MJ was a sick man / addict who was not capable of making good judgements. This physcian knew better. He took advantage of a sick patient. He should not be allowed to practice medicine ever again!

    July 29, 2009 at 4:26 pm |
  25. JC- Los Angeles

    It was one thing for Toto to pull back the curtain and expose all the deplorable leaders on Wall Street, Capitol Hill and corporate america, but to now shine a light on doctors is beyond the pale.

    Our once proud nation has been run into the ground by self centered, connected, egocentric, materialistic, vapid individuals who lack backbones and common decency.

    Today, if one hundred people are in a room and ninety-nine are lying, everyone wonders what's wrong with the other guy.

    July 29, 2009 at 3:47 pm |
  26. Cindy

    Well Murray hit the jackpot when he hooked up with Michael! If things would have worked out better he would have been able to clear his debt within months. But seeing how lack he was at paying things he probably wouldn't have used his money wisely anyway.

    How can people say he is a great doctor when he gave a man a drug that isn't even supposed to be used outside of an OR!? Some people will just follow anyone blindly it seems no matter what they do.

    Cindy...Ga.

    July 29, 2009 at 3:35 pm |
  27. Melissa

    Murder is seeming more and more likely. Now he has motive.

    July 29, 2009 at 3:35 pm |