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Jackson Jury To See Accuser Again

Michael Jackson arrives at the Santa Barbara County Courthouse for testimony in his child molestation trial Thursday, May 26, 2005 in Santa Maria, California. (AP Photo/Hector Mata,pool)
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The jurors in the Michael Jackson child molestation case will once again get to see and hear his young accuser — and CBS News has learned that has the Jackson team very concerned.

The day after the defense rested, Judge Rodney S. Melville agreed to prosecutors' request that during their rebuttal case they be allowed to show the jury a videotape of a July 2003 law enforcement interview of the boy to show that his story has been consistent.

The defense said they would then want to question the boy about the tape during the defense rebuttal.

Defense attorneys said they may also want to question the boy's mother; a psychologist who interviewed the boy, Stan J. Katz; and Larry Feldman, the attorney who sent him to the psychologist.

"I don't think the defense would want to call the accuser to the stand. You don't want the last witness to be the accuser," warned former Santa Barbara prosecutor Craig Smith.

The tape shows the first time the accuser confessed to authorities that he believed he was molested. It's apparently very emotional and Jackson's defense team is worried it could sway the jury.

"Boy, that child was so credible on the stand," said CBS News Legal Analyst Wendy Murphy, a former prosecutor.

"No question, the biggest problem they have is this young man looking at that jury and saying, 'that guy touched me,'" agreed CBS News Legal Analyst Mickey Sherman, both on The Early Show.

Before the jury gets the case, prosecutors will present a rebuttal, the defense gets some rebuttal time of its own, and then attorneys present their closing arguments.

Hollywood celebrities led a parade of 50 witnesses who testified in Michael Jackson's defense, but the real star of the trial — the singer himself — never took the stand, as the defense rested its case Wednesday.

A source close to Jackson tells CBS News that Jackson is "relieved" the defense case is over and he is cautiously optimistic as the child molestation trial winds down, reports Correspondent Vince Gonzales. However, the source says the singer had hoped the defense would end with more of a bang.

Jackson's lawyers called witnesses including Jay Leno, Macaulay Culkin and Chris Tucker as the defense sought to portray the young accuser and his mother as gold-digging schemers who made up allegations that the singer molested the boy.

Tucker, the seventh comedian to take the stand in this trial, Wednesday recalled how he once warned Jackson to be wary of the accuser and his family.

"I said, 'Michael, something ain't right,'" the comedian and star of the "Rush Hour" movies said. "Watch out."

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