Conrad Murray defense bolstered by L.A. coroner?
Could Michael Jackson have given himself the drugs that led to his death? That's the heart of the defense of the pop star's doctor, Conrad Murray, in his involuntary manslaughter trial.
And Tuesday in court, according to Jean Casarez, correspondent for truTV's "In Session," the defense made "a lot of good points" while cross-examining prosecution witness Dr. Christopher Rogers, the Los Angeles County Deputy Medical Examiner, who ruled that Jackson died of "propofol intoxication."
Rogers testified that he thinks Murray is to blame because he didn't have the tools to adequately monitor the Propofol he was giving Jackson. However, Casarez said, the defense brought out the importance of Michael Jackson's stomach contents at the time of his death.
"The defense on the cross-examination really brought out (that) the L.A. coroner didn't test the stomach contents," Casarez said. "They looked at it, they saw it, they didn't test it, so the defense tested it. What did they find? They found Lorazepam in the stomach - four times the concentration of the stomach as in the other areas of the body. And so that denotes that someone orally took at least five to six Lorazepam tablets, maybe more, because some was in (Jackson's) blood. So the defense is saying, 'Wait a minute -- Propofol didn't cause the death, Lorazepam did.' And Michael Jackson took the Lorazepam, but you couldn't put that as the cause of death, because you didn't test the stomach contents."
Murray's own words were also back on trial Tuesday, CBS News national correspondent Ben Tracy reported. Prosecutors played the second half of Murray's interview with police that took place just two days after Jackson's death.
Murray can be heard saying in the tape, "I gave Mr. Jackson love. I was his friend. I cared about him. I tried to help him."
The audio tape is two-and-a-half hours long, and police admit Murray was very cooperative. The doctor details the scene at the hospital when Jackson's children learned their father was dead and eventually saw his body.
Murray said, "After they cried and cried and cried, then his daughter uttered a lot of words of unhappiness, and you know, she will live alone without her dad and she didn't want to be an orphan. Real sad. Real sad. She's like my daughter. And I told her, you know, we will take care of her."
Casarez said Katherine Jackson, Jackson's mother, was openly weeping in court when she heard her grandchildren's response to their father's death.
Casarez said, "She was so close to the jury. They would look at her a little bit. The Jackson family is so predominant in that courtroom in the second row, so close to the jury, you just can't ignore them."
In the tape, Murray also says members of the Jackson family were frantically trying to figure out what had happened.
"They asked me...'Do you know why he died?' My answer was 'no.' And that's the reason why I recommended to the family to have an autopsy because I also wanted to know," Murray said.
Prosecutors also showed a graphic photo from Jackson's autopsy on Tuesday. They say Murray told no one at the hospital that he had been giving Jackson Propofol to help him sleep.
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