6 Oct 2011
Conrad Murray Trial, Day 8: Doctor Who Ruled MJ's Death a Homicide Could Testify (Live Feed)
The doctor who performed Michael Jackson's autopsy and ruled his death a homicide, Dr. Christopher Rogers, is among the potential witnesses in the eighth day of the Conrad Murray involuntary manslaughter trial today.
CNN reports that Los Angeles police detective Orlando Martinez, who interviewed Murray after Michael Jackson's June 25, 2009 death, could also take the witness stand. Murray told Martinez that he had been administering propofol to Jackson for two months as a sleep aid, and jurors may finally hear the recording of the two-hour interview Martinez conducted with Murray.
Read more: Conrad Murray Trial, Day 7: Coroner Investigator Reveals Singer's Drug Stash -- and Urine Jug -- Update 4
Rogers, a pathologist, ruled that Jackson died of "acute propofol intoxication," and that sedatives were also a factor. Prosecutors contend Murray is criminally liable for Jackson's death because he recklessly administered the propofol, a potent surgical anesthetic drug, and was negligent in properly monitoring Jackson.
Today's proceedings will begin with the continuing testimony of a coroner's office investigator who discovered drug and medical paraphernalia in Michael Jackson's bedroom after his death. They covered a table in the courtroom on Wednesday.
Los Angeles County Coroner's investigator Elissa Fleak testified Wednesday that in Jackson's bedroom she found a jug of urine, 12 bottles of propofol (including an empty vial next to Jackson's bed), seven bottles of other medication (including lorazepam pills prescribed to Jackson by Murray) and a saline bag that had been cut open and contained an empty 100 ml propofol bottle inside.
Read more: Conrad Murray Trial: Defense Faces Uphill Battle in Week 2
Prosecutors contend Murray used the bag as a DIY IV drip to administer the propofol to Jackson; the defense counters Murray gave Jackson just 25 ml of propofol via syringe.
Murray's defense also argues that Jackson caused his own death by taking lorazepam and swallowing propofol when Murray was out of his bedroom.
Wednesday's proceedings also included prosecutors' attempt to make an emotional impact on jurors by playing the audio of a phone conversation between Jackson and Murray, as Jackson was preparing for the series of London concerts he hoped would spark a career comeback.
During the disturbing conversation, recorded by Murray and retrieved by a forensics investigator from Murray's iPhone, Jackson slurred so much that a transcript had to be used.
On the recording, the singer told Murray he wanted to use the concerts to raise money to open a children's hospital bearing his name, and that he was motivated by the fact that he felt he didn't have a proper childhood.
"That will be remembered more than my performances," Jackson said. "My performances will be up there helping my children and always be my dream. I love them. I love them because I didn't have a childhood. I had no childhood. I feel their pain. I feel their hurt. I can deal with it. 'Heal the World,' 'We Are the World,' 'Will You Be There,' 'The Lost Children' … These are the songs I've written because I hurt, you know, I hurt."
Read more: Juror Questionnaire for Conrad Murray Trial Rife With Drug and Celebrity-Related Questions
Murray's iPhone also included a voicemail from the late Frank DiLeo, Jackson's then-manager, who died in August.
DiLeo had asked Murray to test Jackson's blood, after the singer had "an episode" in a concert rehearsal the previous day.
On the opening day of the Murray trial, "High School Musical" director Kenny Ortega, who was producing Jackson's London concerts, testified that he had also expressed concern to Murray about Jackson's health.
In an email to Murray, Ortega wrote: "He appeared quite weak and fatigued this evening. He had a terrible case of the chills, was trembling, rambling and obsessing. Everything in me says he should be psychologically evaluated."
Murray's phone also contained evidence of a British insurance company's request for Jackson's medical records, after various news reports had suggested Jackson was in very poor health.
The trial is expected to last at least four more weeks