Jacksons v AEG Timeline Legal

Murray case judge rejects a load of defence witnesses

By | Published on Thursday 1 September 2011

Conrad Murray

The judge hearing the involuntary manslaughter case against Michael Jackson’s personal medic Dr Conrad Murray has rejected over a dozen of the defence’s proposed witnesses. Judge Michael Pastor says plans by the Murray defence to question former associates about the late singer’s financial affairs, personal life and more general aspects of his medical history were “distractions” that would detract from the important facts.

As previously reported, Murray’s defence team are expected to claim that Jackson himself administered the fatal shot of Propofol, and that the singer’s death was not, therefore, due to the medic’s negligence, as the prosecution will claim. It seems increasingly likely that the defence’s argument will also suggest that Jackson didn’t inject the drug in a misjudged attempt to send himself to sleep, but that he actually committed suicide. It’s because of that claim that the defence reckon revelations about the late singer’s financial affairs and other medical problems should be up for discussion during the trial.

Rejected witnesses include Jackson’s long-serving dermatologist Arnold Klein, the one-time nanny of the singer’s children Grace Rwaramba and his friend Susan Etok. Any references to the 2005 trial when Jackson was acquitted of child abuse allegations will also be banned from the Murray hearing, which is due to begin later this month.

Needless to say, the prosecution in the Murray case welcomed Judge Pastor’s decision regarding who will and won’t be allowed to testify, telling reporters that the public had been “concerned about this trial deteriorating into an attack on Michael Jackson”. The defence, while disappointed by the decision, said they would still fight their corner relying on the testimonies several approved doctors and nurses. Attorney Edward Chernoff told reporters: “If we have to go to a tank battle with a switchblade, that is exactly what we’ll do”.