Jackson Defense Rests

Michael Jackson's defense suddenly rested Friday after prosecutors showed the jury a 2003 videotape of the accuser the first time he told investigators he had been molested by the pop star.

The decision to not present a defense rebuttal means closing arguments could begin as early as Wednesday. Judge Rodney S. Melville told jurors they would not need to be in court Tuesday when attorneys will have discussions.

CBS' Bruce Rheins reports the prosecution has rested contingent upon a motion scheduled for Tuesday morning regarding some documents. They may ask to re-open dependent upon that ruling, but for all intents and purposes, their case is over. Defense has rested unconditionally.

Rheins reports the jury will not be in attendance on Tuesday. They will be asked to call in to find out if they should come in on Wednesday or Thursday. Presumably, closing arguments will begin on one of those two days.

CBS News Consultant J. Randy Taraborrelli reports there was "stunned silence" in the courtroom when both sides made their announcement.

Defense attorneys had said they planned to call the boy, his mother, a psychologist and an attorney who referred the family to the psychologist.

But after jurors saw a tape of the boy haltingly describing the alleged molestation in much of the same language he used in his testimony, the defense decided not to present any witnesses.

"It was a smart move by prosecutors, who were able to get the alleged victim in the case back before jurors without subjecting him to cross examination. And the defense apparently felt there was no point in bringing the young man back onto the stand; that the risks were too great after a strong defense case,'' says CBS News Legal Analyst Andrew Cohen.

"He put his hands in my pants. He started masturbating me," the boy told detectives who urged him to tell his story. "I told him I didn't want to do that and he kept on doing it. I told him no."

Prosecutors played the tape after Melville instructed jurors "only to observe the demeanor, manner and attitude of the witness" and said that the boy's "statements are not to be considered for the truth of the matter stated."

The judge had also told the jury that if the defense called the boy to stand the questions would be limited to the points he had outlined.

The taped interview was conducted in the Santa Barbara County Sheriff's Department's Sexual Abuse Assault Response Team cottage in Santa Barbara on July 6, 2003.

The tape showed the boy, in denim shorts and a blue shirt, slumped in a chair. He occasionally smiled, scratched his arm and fumbled with a button on his shirt.

Investigators made small-talk as they tried to build rapport before pressing him to be forthcoming.

With his head down and frequently pausing, the boy described the alleged molestation in a low voice. The account was similar to the one he gave on witness stand.

On the tape he said Jackson masturbated him "five or so" times and later clarified under questioning by Sgt. Steve Robel that it was five times or less.

In his testimony the boy said he could remember Jackson masturbating him twice but there may have been more times. His brother testified to twice seeing Jackson molesting the boy.

In the taped interview he described things that Jackson allegedly said to him, including that boys need to masturbate or they would go crazy.

After that, Robel told the boy, "I guarantee you will feel much better after you get it ... off your chest."

The boy then took a deep breath and after a long pause went on.

"He said that he wanted to show me how to masturbate," the boy said. "I said no. Then he said he could do it for me."

The boy looked down, then resumed haltingly.

"He grabbed me," he said.

Robel asked him where he was grabbed.

"My private area," the boy said, going on to describe the masturbation and saying that Jackson touched him for "a long time."

Asked what Jackson said in response to being told to stop, the boy told Robel, "He said that's OK. It's natural."

The boy said the first molestation occurred after he and Jackson had been drinking at the singer's Neverland ranch.

"Toward the last days at Neverland ... he would always have me drink," the boy said.

The accuser, now 15, testified at the start of the trial. The prosecution asked to introduce the tape during its rebuttal case, which began after the defense rested earlier this week.

After lengthy arguments, Melville admitted the tape for limited purposes.

Defense attorney Robert Sanger had objected to playing the tape at all and said it could lengthen the defense rebuttal case. He added, "I don't think by the time the dust settles that the jury will be any further ahead."

Jackson, 46, is charged with molesting the then-13-year-old boy in February or March 2003, giving him wine and conspiring to hold his family captive to get them to rebut a documentary in which the boy appeared with Jackson as the entertainer said he let children into his bed but it was non-sexual.