Prosecutors claim Jackson doctor acted too slowly

Tue Jan 4, 2011 4:33pm EST
Email This Article |
Share This Article
  • Facebook
  • LinkedIn
  • Twitter
| Print This Article | Single Page
[-] Text [+]

By Alex Dobuzinskis

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - The doctor charged in the death of pop star Michael Jackson collected evidence from the scene before having an ambulance called when he found the singer unconscious, a prosecutor said on Tuesday.

The accusations came during a preliminary hearing in the trial of Dr. Conrad Murray, who was caring for Jackson when he died of a drug overdose on June 25, 2009, and is charged with involuntary manslaughter in the singer's death.

Los Angeles Deputy District Attorney David Walgren said more than 20 minutes passed between the time Murray discovered the 50-year-old pop star in his bed not breathing and when a member of Jackson's security team called paramedics.

"It is important that at this point 911 (emergency service) has not been called or ordered to be called by Dr. Murray," Walgren told the judge in the packed Los Angeles courtroom, which included reporters and members of Jackson's family.

"Instead, Dr. Murray is having (a security guard) assist him in collecting medical evidence and various paraphernalia," he said.

Jackson died after a dose of the powerful anesthetic propofol that is typically used in surgery but which Jackson asked for as a sleep aid.

Murray, a Houston-based doctor with a second practice in Las Vegas, was hired to care for Jackson in advance of a series of concerts in London that were to have begun in July.

Walgren said that that after the pop star returned from a rehearsal in the early morning hours of June 25, 2009, Murray gave him doses of several drugs to calm him down, starting with Valium at 1:30 a.m. and ending with an injection of propofol between 10:40 a.m. and 11 a.m.   Continued...

<p>Conrad Murray, the late Michael Jackson's personal physician, sits in court during his arraignment at the Los Angeles Superior Court Airport Branch Courthouse February 8, 2010 on one count of involuntary manslaughter in Jackson's death. REUTERS/Mark Boster/Pool</p>