Who gave Michael Jackson the drug overdose that killed him?
Prosecutors are making a bombshell claim. They say attorneys for Dr. Conrad Murray are suggesting Murray's defense team
In a court hearing Wednesday, reports CBS' Priya David Clemens, a lawyer for Murray, who was Jackson's physician and who faces charges of involuntary manslaughter, said Murray injected Jackson with just 25 milligrams of the powerful sleep drug Propofol the day Jackson died, but it would have taken 150 milligrams to kill Jackson.
"The defense attorney hasn't come out and said, 'We're going to show that Michael Jackson tried to kill himself, or gave himself these drugs,' but they're hinting at that," observes "Inside Edition" legal analyst Jim Moret.
Murray, who could face up to five years in prison, admits he also gave Jackson other sedatives in addition to Propofol. He contends he never gave Jackson any life-threatening amounts of any drug. Murray told investigators he left Jackson sleeping after giving him Propofol, and his attorneys may argue Jackson did the rest himself.
Murray's defense strategy could remain a mystery until his potential trial actually begins, David notes. His lawyers were under no obligation to tip their hand at Tuesday's preliminary hearing.
Moret appears dubious of the possible defense strategy, saying, "You have to remember, you're talking to men and women on a jury. And you have to convince them that Michael Jackson was given medication, put him to sleep, Conrad Murray walks out, Michael Jackson wakes up and says, 'Let me give myself some more,' and then dies."
But CBS News legal analyst Lisa Bloom told "Early Show" co-anchor Harry Smith Thursday, "To me, this is a plausible theory. I he know a lot of people think this is a crazy theory, but if Michael Jackson was really a drug addict and this was his drug of choice, Propofol, and he was asking for it and asking for it and the doctor walks out of the room, to me it's plausible he could have administered an additional dose to himself."
Wouldn't that mean the defense would have to prove Jackson was capable of self-administering the Propofol?
"Not exactly," Bloom replied, "because all the defense has to do is show reasonable doubt. The prosecution has the burden, from the beginning of the case to the end, to show it was Dr. Murray who administered that dose. All the defense needs to do is poke holes in that theory. But, if Michael Jackson is, say, lying there on a bed, he's got an IV in his arm, is it possible he could have reached around, grabbed a bottle, added to the dose so that it got into the intravenous tube into his arm? If it's not physically possible, then the prosecution's gonna score some points."
But, Bloom added, "Remember, the prosecution has to prove its case to all of the jurors. They have to get a unanimous verdict. The defense only needs to get one to get a hung jury or, you know, to get an acquittal, they have to get all 12, as well. What the defense is usually trying to do is just get one or two jurors to sew those seeds of reasonable doubt. Maybe they can do that with this new theory."
Bloom stressed that Murray isn't "accused of murder. Nobody is saying (he) intentionally killed Michael Jackson. Involuntary manslaughter is saying that dr. Murray recklessly engaged in an act that he should have known could have caused great bodily injury or death to Michael Jackson, and that is administering a very large dose of this drug, Propofol."