Jacksons v AEG Timeline Legal

He never mentioned the propofol: Murray trial update

By | Published on Monday 3 October 2011

Conrad Murray

It was the turn of the paramedics who responded to the emergency call put out by Michael Jackson’s bodyguard, as the king of pop lay dying in his bedroom in June 2009, who took to the stand on Friday as the prosecution in the Conrad Murray trial continued to present their arguments, as to how it was that the doctor’s negligence caused the death of the pop star.

Two members of Jackson’s entourage had already described the scene in the singer’s bedroom where a panicked Murray tried to resuscitate his patient while seemingly also trying to conceal some of the medication he’d been giving the star. Paramedic Richard Senneff confirmed there was an element of chaos when he entered the room. Jackson was on the floor, eyes open, surgical cap on his head, his skin turning blue. Murray, Senneff said, was sweating and looked frantic.

“I asked the doctor if the patient had an underlying medical condition”, Senneff testified. “He said, ‘Nothing, he has nothing’. But that didn’t add up to me”. The paramedic then questioned Murray as to what medication Jackson had taken, but, he claimed, the doctor was initially evasive. He admitted to giving Jackson the sedative lorazepam to help him sleep and, when Senneff spotted other medicines on Jackson’s nightstand, Murray added that he was treating the singer for dehydration and exhaustion.

But, and crucially for the prosecution’s case, Senneff says Murray never mentioned the drug propofol, which he had also administered to Jackson as a sleeping aid and which, as it turned out, killed the singer. As previously reported, the prosecution argue Murray refused to mention the propofol because he knew he had been negligent to administer the drug in a home environment without proper monitoring equipment.

Senneff said three other paramedics joined him at Jackson’s home “within moments”, and tried in vain to resuscitate the singer. All attempts failed and, when asked if he saw any sign of life during those efforts, Senneff told the court: “No I did not”.

A second paramedic called to the scene, Martin Blout, also noted seeing various medications in Jackson’s room, including three open bottles of lidocaine on the floor. He also testified to seeing Murray scoop up vials which, he claimed, the doctor dropped into a black bag, something claimed by one of Jackson’s security guards earlier in the week. Blout also confirmed Murray did not mention propofol in all the time they were in that room trying to revive Jackson.

With such intense media coverage of the trial, and much speculation from “experts” on air and in print, not to mention La Toya Jackson tweeting conspiracy theories from the court room, Judge Michael Pastor has continually ordered the jury hearing this case to steer clear of any reporting of the trial. He also criticised defence attorney Ed Chernoff after one of his colleagues gave an interview to US TV publicly criticising one of last week’s witnesses. Chernoff argued that his partner was not actively working on the case, but Pastor said that no one from any legal firm linked to the case is allowed to speak to the media while the trial is ongoing.

The case continues.