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January 3rd, 2011
11:00 AM ET

Judge approves residue testing in Jackson doctor's defense

Alan Duke and Stan Wilson
CNN

Los Angeles, California (CNN) - The judge in the involuntary manslaughter case against Dr. Conrad Murray on Wednesday approved a plan to allow defense lawyers to test residue from syringes and an intravenous drip found in pop star Michael Jackson's home after his June 25, 2009, death.

During the court hearing, one of Murray's attorneys, J. Michael Flanagan, alleged that coroner's officials should have done "quantitative" analysis of the items to help determine "the means of who injected Jackson" with the powerful drugs that killed him.

Murray told investigators he injected the singer with sufficient amounts of propofol and to help him sleep the night of his death, but denied administering concentrations found in Jackson's blood cited by investigators, which amounted to levels used in major surgery.

Deputy District Attorney David Walgren dismissed the defense attorney's claim, saying that his office has shared everything and never objected to testing the syringes or intravenous drip as long as the coroner followed proper procedures. "The theory that they're running with is Michael Jackson killed himself," said prosecutor Walgren in court.

Murray is charged with involuntary manslaughter in Jackson's death, which the Los Angeles County coroner ruled was from an overdose of propofol, a powerful anesthetic used to put surgical patients to sleep, in combination with benzodiazepine, a sedative used to relieve an array of physical and psychological maladies.

The coroner also concluded the evidence did not support the self-administration of propofol.

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Filed under: 360° Radar • Michael Jackson
soundoff (7 Responses)
  1. Mary

    The trial is tomorrow and my hope is that there will be fair and proper justice, and that the God will be with the Jackson family, Michael's mother especially. My hope is for the fans to not walk in bitterness but instead walk in forgiveness since I believe that Michael would not have wanted them to shout hate at this doctor(whatever happens to him) for what he did.

    January 24, 2011 at 11:25 pm |
  2. Mary

    Not a very good defense for Murray as far as I'm concerned. Michael was afraid of needles. Murray said that before he injected Michael with propofol, he had given him a laundry list of other sedatives to get him to sleep. Supposedly thinking that a drowsy Michael would inject the deadly amount of the drug himself seems impossible. I have heard over the past months that when propofol is injected, it burns at the area where it has been injected. He could not have done it himself.

    January 10, 2011 at 4:07 am |
  3. Eric

    If the evidence pans out to be true as we're reading about, 4 years is not enough time in my humble opinion. This drug is used for surgery and is not to be messed with. Additionally, to prescribe after the doses of the other meds he administered goes against everything physicians know. To make matters worse, he tried to cover up, having staff remove evidence. And to top it off, he originally claimed it was suicide when he knew perfectly well he was responsible. And what kind of cardiologist (or any physician for that matter) doesn't know the proper techniques for CPR? His lack of professionalism coupled with hindering of evidence makes this murder. Seems like 40 years would be more appropriate. He is a disgrace to the medical community and to Michael Jackson both.

    January 5, 2011 at 1:40 pm |
  4. Tom

    Jackson hired Murray to protect him, monitor him and prevent what happened from happening.

    January 4, 2011 at 8:49 pm |
  5. Marion Bruce

    If Michael Jackson injected himself would there not be a needle with his prints on it – his prints would be the last prints on anything. Putting that aside, the fact remains he was left unattended and that would be negligence no matter what. The doctor was not paid 150,000 to walk away.

    January 4, 2011 at 12:47 pm |
  6. Judy Morris

    That is ridiculous, Michael Jackson did not kill himself. And I doubt as well that he could have self injected. Dr, Murray was negligent, and propophol as Zoe said should never have been used in a home. That drug is dangerous and should only be used in a hospital setting. This man had no right to be playing with another mans life. Dr. Murray did knowingly put Michael Jackson in harms way when he injected him with this drug,then left him unattended. Then tries to hid the evidence, I still think this man should be on trial for a lot more than manslaughter. I find all of this so unbelievable, and is the final insult and degradation to Michael Jackson. Michael Jackson had everything to live for, and he certainly didn't want to leave his children without the only parent they knew. There really aren't any winners here. Dr. Murray should accept responsibility in the fact that a man died when he was under his care. Michael Jackson did not deserve to die at the hands of Dr. Murray. Michael Jackson has spent his whole life being victimized by the so called celebrity press, he's been demonized vilified, for what? He was humiliated and tried for a the crime of molestation, found not guilty fourteen times. No one has ever said they were sorry for any of that. It is most vile that Michael Jackson's life has to be put yet again to scrutiny. Don't they think that Michael Jackson deserves some respect as a human being. I find these people revolting!

    January 4, 2011 at 12:14 am |
  7. Zoe

    This is the most preposterous defense I've ever heard. However, given that it's Michael Jackson, the public will believe anything. Explain to me in rationality how someone on a powerful anesthetic even sits up, nonetheless self-injects (into his leg). While this clearly didn't happen, Dr. Murray can try to defend this any way he wants; The evidence of medical malpractice are clear regardless. Propofol is not to be administered to anyone outside of a hospital, and nonetheless for helping with insomnia. Secondly, it is a dangerous powerful anesthetic that depresses breathing and heart rate. Anyone on an anesthetic needs to be monitored every second, as people can stop breathing and their hearts can stop beating on such a drug. That he left the patient there by himself for who knows how long to talk on the telephone is incriminating in and of itself, not to mention he tried to hide the evidence by fleeing the scene after the ambulance came and then trying to conceal propofol by sending it in a box to his girlfriend... doesn't sound like an innocent person to me. I realize Michael Jackson was disliked by some, but no one deserves to die at the hands of a negligent doctor, nonetheless have the one responsible blame the victim who is no longer here to defend himself due to his actions. Despicable.

    January 3, 2011 at 7:33 pm |

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