Jackson doctor expected to be charged on Monday

Fri Feb 5, 2010 6:55pm EST
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By Bob Tourtellotte

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Los Angeles prosecutors on Monday plan to file a criminal case in the death of Michael Jackson that is expected to include a charge of involuntary manslaughter against the singer's doctor.

The Los Angeles District Attorney's office said on Friday details of its case would be released on Monday, and gave no further details.

But sources close to the case said Dr. Conrad Murray, who has been under investigation for months, would be charged with the crime of unlawfully killing another person without malice or intent. If convicted, he faces up to four years in jail.

A criminal case against Murray was widely expected to be filed this week because he has been in Los Angeles meeting with his legal team, and his attorney Ed Chernoff said the Houston cardiologist would surrender himself voluntarily if charged.

As recently as Thursday, Chernoff issued a statement saying he and the Los Angeles district attorney were discussing booking and arraignment procedures.

But by Friday, media outlets reported that charges were delayed because of squabbling between police and prosecutors over how to handle Murray's arrest. Other reports said Chernoff balked when the district attorney demanded Murray be handcuffed and walked into a courthouse in front of TV cameras.

Chernoff's spokeswoman Miranda Sevcik told Reuters, "he (Chernoff) felt an arrest of Dr. Murray would be a waste of money, time and resources ... what the district attorney wanted I don't know. Our only request was to surrender Dr. Murray."

Los Angeles district attorney spokeswoman Sandi Gibbons said there was "no truth" to reports of feuding among police and the D.A. or over arrangements to take Murray into custody.   Continued...