January 4th, 2011
10:15 AM ET
January 3rd, 2011
11:00 AM ET

Judge approves residue testing in Jackson doctor's defense

Alan Duke and Stan Wilson

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.

Full story

Filed under: 360° Radar • Michael Jackson
June 25th, 2010
11:22 AM ET

Where are they now – A year after Michael Jackson's death

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2010/SHOWBIZ/06/24/michael.jackson.year.later/t1larg.jackson.anniv.jpg]

Alan Duke

Michael Jackson's death instantly changed the lives of his family and friends. The weeks immediately after the pop icon died were chaotic, and many questions are still unanswered for those closest to Jackson.

Michael's children

The day their father died, Prince Michael, 13, Paris, 12, and Blanket, 8, moved in with their grandmother Katherine Jackson at the Encino, California, home where Michael once lived with his family.

The home is filled with memories of their father, including many photos of a young Michael Jackson. The theater room of the large house was converted into a classroom where they've been home-schooled for the past year.

The grassy yard of the Encino estate is often filled with Michael's kids playing ball with four cousins - the sons of Jackson brothers Jermaine and Randy - who have lived there the past year with their mother.

They share a computer with internet access, which resulted in fans getting a rare and candid look at Blanket's dancing, acting and light saber skills when several videos were uploaded to YouTube in April.

While Jackson kept his children shrouded in privacy during his life, they have appeared at a handful of public events to honor their father since his death.

Keep Reading...

June 25th, 2010
10:49 AM ET
February 9th, 2010
05:09 PM ET

Treating addicts: What we may (or may not) learn from the Conrad Murray case

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2010/CRIME/02/05/michael.jackson.doctor.charges/story.murraymug.gi.jpg caption="Dr. Conrad Murray told authorities he administered sleep aids to Michael Jackson." width=300 height=169]

Tanya M. Acker
AC360° Contributor

With the indictment of Dr. Conrad Murray, a new media feeding frenzy begins.

As an attorney, I am both familiar with and thankful for the legal presumption of innocence that is a cornerstone of the American criminal justice system. I also know that presumption is often more meaningful in theory than in practice; having at times represented litigants who were viewed with some measure of social opprobrium, I have some sense of what it is to be on the wrong side of a public relations juggernaut.

Dr. Murray’s team, of course, has its own story to tell. We have recently heard a good deal about the doctor’s history serving disadvantaged patients – service for which I am sure those patients are grateful. I am also certain that there may be other elements of his defense about which we are unaware and which may or may not ultimately prove persuasive to a jury. And before we assume that we know more about this case than we actually do, I would like to point out that I have seen gross abuses of state power – with respect both to well-funded criminal defendants and others – so we should be wary about blindly accepting the allegations set forth by the prosecution.

February 8th, 2010
04:41 PM ET

What is involuntary manslaughter?

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/SHOWBIZ/Music/08/18/jackson.murray.video/art.conrad.murray.youtube.jpg caption="Dr. Conrad Murray was charged with involuntary manslaughter in the death of Michael Jackson"]

Beth Karas and Ann O'Neill

To prove involuntary manslaughter, prosecutors will have to convince jurors that Michael Jackson's doctor took risks he shouldn't have - and that other doctors wouldn't have, legal experts say.

"It's not the same as malpractice," said Laurie Levenson, a professor at Loyola Law School. To prove a physician's actions are criminally negligent, she added, "it has to be really extreme for no good reason."

Jackson, 50, died on June 25 after Dr. Conrad Murray gave him several prescription medications over the course of a sleepless night, according to court records.

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Filed under: Michael Jackson
December 30th, 2009
03:20 PM ET

"Thriller" included in 2009 National Film Registry

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Ann Hornaday
Washington Post

The music video for Michael Jackson's "Thriller" made history again today when it was named as one of 25 motion pictures to be included in the Library of Congress's National Film Registry.

"Thriller," a 14-minute video promoting the song of the same name, represented a revolutionary moment in film and popular culture when it was first released on Dec. 2, 1983. Directed by the established Hollywood filmmaker John Landis ("The Blues Brothers," "Animal House"), the video merged such formal cinematic elements as a script, elaborate sets and cinematography with the relatively nascent medium of short-form music videos.

"Thriller" joins such esteemed films as "Dog Day Afternoon" and "Jezebel" in this year's National Film Registry roster. The Library of Congress established the registry in 1989 as part of the National Film Preservation Act, to spotlight films that are "culturally, historically or aesthetically" significant and deserve to be preserved for all time, according to Librarian of Congress James H. Billington. As of this year, 525 films have been selected for the registry.

Keep reading...

Filed under: Michael Jackson • Pop Culture
September 22nd, 2009
07:54 AM ET
September 3rd, 2009
09:55 PM ET
September 3rd, 2009
05:15 PM ET

Photo Gallery: Inside the Great Mausoleum


Michael Jackson will be interred this evening inside the Great Mausoleum on the grounds of Forest Lawn cemetery in Glendale, California. The service will be private, but we'll have full coverage from outside the cemetery starting at 10 p.m. ET.

The massive mausoleum, which is normally open to tourists, was closed today in preparation for the funeral. A security guard blocking its entrance said it would reopen to the public on Friday.

Fans of Clark Gable, Carole Lombard and dozens of other celebrities buried on the grounds have flocked to Forest Lawn-Glendale for decades, but Jackson may outdraw them all. Security guards - aided by cameras - keep a constant vigil over the graves and crypts, which are surrounded by a world-class collection of art and architecture. It is still unclear whether or not tourists will be allowed to visit Jackson's resting place.

Check out these photos of the Great Mausoleum.


Filed under: 360° Radar • Michael Jackson
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