Jackson Jury's Final Look

Computer screen with XXX - X Rated tape and child, ICE and Homeland Security logo
CBS / iStock Photo
Investigators' first look at the boy who accused Michael Jackson of molesting him is also the last one juries will be left with as they decide whether he is credible enough to convict the pop star.

With evidence that included phone records and adult magazines and testimony from more than 130 witnesses including Macaulay Culkin, Chris Tucker and Jay Leno, the case may come down to whether jurors think the boy is believable.

Testimony ended Friday after prosecutors showed the panel the boy's videotaped interview with sheriff's detectives in July 2003.

"Bottom line, if they don't believe the accuser, the jurors end up voting not guilty," said Jim Hammer, a trial analyst and former San Francisco prosecutor.

"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.

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 the damaging documentary, "Living With Michael Jackson."

Jury deliberations could come as soon as next week.

The interview and other tapes played throughout the trial gave jurors several images of the boy.

He appears downcast, weak and ghostly in the September 2000 tape, a home movie in which Jackson takes the boy's hand to help him onto a train, holds an umbrella over him as his brother pushes him in a wheelchair and sits with him next to a lake.

In later appearances he is fresh-faced and confident. In the documentary footage — and in a February 2003 video made by Jackson's associates to rebut the documentary in which Jackson said he allowed children to sleep in his bed — the boy defends the singer and praises him for helping him beat cancer.

A different side of his personality appears on the tape jurors saw Friday.

In a low, quiet voice, looking at the floor and pausing often, the boy tells sheriff's investigators that Jackson acted inappropriately with him almost from the beginning — starting with his first trip to Neverland in 2000.

His account is similar to the one he gave on the witness stand in March, though a few details were missing or somewhat inconsistent.

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