Michael Jackson’s Doctor Found Guilty
Jury finds Conrad Murray guilty of involuntary manslaughter in connection with the pop singer’s 2009 death.
| slatest.slate.com – A Los Angeles jury on Monday found Michael Jackson’s doctor, Conrad Murray, guilty of involuntary manslaughter in connection with the pop superstar’s 2009 death.
The jury returned the guilty verdict Monday shortly after 1 p.m. local time, finding Murray criminally negligent in his use of a powerful surgical anesthetic, propofol, to treat Jackson’s insomnia and finding that it significantly contributed to his death.
Murray now faces a sentence ranging anywhere from probation to four years in state prison. He will be sentenced on Tuesday, Nov. 29.
The jury returned the guilty verdict after roughly ten hours of deliberations spread over two days. The trial included nearly six weeks of testimony, including from 33 witnesses called by the prosecution and 16 by the defense. More than 340 exhibits were available in the jury room as the panel mulled its verdict, USA Today reports.
CNN reports that one witness that never took the stand was Dr. Arnold Klein, who Murray’s defense team argued got Jackson addicted to the painkiller Demerol in the final months of his life. Murray did not know about that addiction, according to his lawyers, who contend that it had fatal complications.
Klein’s testimony was deemed irrelevant by the court since the painkiller was not found in Jackson’s body by the coroner, who ruled that Jackson’s death was the direct result of acute propofol intoxication in combination with two sedatives.
The prosecution, meanwhile, argued that Murray should have never used the hospital-grade drug in Jackson’s home without the necessary monitoring and resuscitation equipment. They also said that Murry acted negligently in waiting 20 minutes before calling 911 and failing to tell the first responders that propofol had been administered to Jackson.
The scene outside the Los Angeles County courthouse was a chaotic one, and the Jackson supporters who had gathered nearby to learn Murray’s fate could be heard within the chamber cheering the verdict shortly after it was handed down.
The Los Angeles Times reports that hordes of reporters were squeezed in among a crowd that had gathered to learn Murray’s fate. In the hours before the verdict was read, police moved to split the crowed into their respective camps: Jackson fans and Murray supporters.