Los Angeles, Calif. – The defense began presenting its case at Dr. Conrad Murray’s manslaughter trial Monday, calling a physician who had treated Michael Jackson, a nurse who tried to help the singer with insomnia and police officers who spoke to those present when Jackson died.
First, however, Beverly Hills Police Department Communications Director Donna Norris took the stand to briefly testify about the 911 call that was placed regarding Jackson’s distress on the day he died, detailing the time the call was placed, the number it was placed from and the cell phone tower that transmitted the call.
Next on the stand was Los Angeles Police Department Surveillance Specialist Alexander Supall, who told the jury he arrived at Jackson’s home on the night the singer died to examine surveillance footage from the mansion’s security system. As he testified, two clips from the video footage were shown to the jury, depicting several cars arriving at Jackson’s residence – at 12:58 a.m. and again at 12:47 a.m.
To watch the Michael Jackson manslaughter trial of Conrad Murray live when court is in session, click here.
Subsequently, LAPD Detectives Dan Myers and Orlando Martinez took the stand to call into question the prior testimony of prosecution witness Alberto Alvarez, who worked as a bodyguard for Jackson. Alvarez had told the jury that after Jackson stopped breathing, Murray told him to dispose of an IV saline bag that contained a bottle of propofol, along with additional bottles of the drug, before calling 911. He also testified that the physician told him to put a pulse oximeter monitoring device on Jackson’s finger.
Myers testified that Alvarez did not tell him about the propofol bottles or the saline bag with the powerful anesthetic in it, while being interviewed about Jackson’s death in Aug. 2009.
Martinez supported Myers’ assertion, telling the jury that he did not hear Alvarez mention hiding the drug or the IV bag. He also noted that he met with the former bodyguard and the prosecution in Apr. 2011, where Alvarez brought the bag, the propofol bottle and the pulse oximeter at the request of Los Angeles County Dep. Dist. Atty. David Walgren.
Dr. Allen Metzger then took the stand, saying he had been Jackson’s “main internal medicine physician” in 2008 and 2009. He told the jury he had prescribed both klonopin, and anti-seizure medication, and trazadone, an anti-depressant for the singer.
To see the Michael Jackson autopsy photos, click here (WARNING! The graphic nude photo may be disturbing to some.)
Metzger acknowledged that the King of Pop had asked him about “intravenous sleep medicines” calling them “juice.” He noted that Jackson believed that his insomnia was untreatable with oral medications, however, Metzger testified he recommended Jackson not intravenous drugs to get to sleep.
To see photos from the first week of Michael Jackson’s death trial, click here.
To see photos from the second week of Michael Jackson’s death trial, click here.
To see photos from the third week of Michael Jackson’s death trial, click here.
To see photos from the fourth week of Michael Jackson’s death trial, click here.
Under cross-examination by prosecutor Walgren, the doctor was asked if there was “any amount of money that would have convinced you to give [Jackson] an IV of propofol in his house?” to which Metzger responded, “Absolutely not.”
Nurse practitioner Cherilyn Lee testified next and told the jury she treated Jackson in 2009, making a number of visits to his home to help him with his insomnia. She advised the singer to use natural remedies to help him sleep, administering IVs of mineral rich solutions.
According to Lee, Jackson told her, “When I need sleep, I need to go to sleep right away.” Prior to court adjourning for the day, Lee told the jury that the singer mentioned a medication to her that he believed was the only thing that could help him get a full night’s sleep.
Dr. Murray, 58, who was hired to care for Jackson during his concert tour, ‘This Is It,’ is accused of administering a lethal dose of the powerful anesthetic propofol to the singer on June 25, 2009. Murray’s defense attorneys claim that although he may have given the singer the drug, it was not enough to kill him. In addition, they allege Jackson somehow took the dose of propofol that killed him out of Murray’s presence.
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