Conrad Murray trial: No verdict yet after day of jury deliberations
A Los Angeles jury began deliberating the fate of Conrad Murray, the doctor accused of involuntary manslaughter in the death of Michael Jackson, on Friday but ended the business day with no verdict.
Murray, a 58-year-old Grenada-born cardiologist, had treated Jackson for years and gave the King of Pop medications, namely the anesthetic propofol, during the hours before his death on June 25, 2009 in what he says was an attempt to treat his insomnia. His trial began on September 27.
The jury is made up of seven men and five women (check out more details about the jurors - and their alternates). Deliberations began on Friday at 8:30 a.m. local time. The jurors went on several breaks and had a catered lunch of Chinese take-out before ending their talks around 4 p.m. They discussed the case for about six hours and are set to return on Monday, November 7 at 8:30 a.m. PT / 11:30 a.m. ET.
When the jurors finish their deliberations, they are expected to signal they have reached a verdict by having a buzzer pressed three times. The judge is then set to announce that the jurors are expected to soon announce formally that a decision has been reached on the case. Approximately two hours afterwards, the verdict is expected to be read in court.
NOTE: You will be able to watch the proceedings online: OnTheRedCarpet.com is hosting a LIVE STREAM of the Conrad Murray trial verdict.
Autopsy results show that Jackson died at age 50 from an overdose of propofol, a powerful anesthetic that the singer referred to as his "milk," and other sedatives. Murray had administered the drugs to Jackson in the hours before his death. The King of Pop had suffered a cardiac arrest at his rented Los Angeles home and was pronounced dead at a hospital.
Murray's attorneys had said the dose of propofol he gave was too low to be fatal and maintained Jackson injected himself with more of the drug and also swallowed several anti-anxiety pills while the doctor was away from his bedside. The doctor also told police that the singer was addicted to propofol and that he had tried to wean him off the drug by giving him other medications to treat his sleep problem.
During his closing argument on Thursday, prosecutor David Walgren told the jurors that they are to decide whether Murray "acted with gross negligence or criminal negligence in his treatment of Michael Jackson and constituted a "substantial factor" in the King of Pop's death.
A conviction of involuntary manslaughter carries a maximum sentence of four years in prison and Murray, who had maintained clinics in Houston and Las Vegas, could also lose his medical license.
MURRAY WITH FRIENDS, FAMILY
Also on Friday, Murray was filmed by agency NPG.com in Santa Monica, where he lives with his girlfriend Nicole Alvarez, the mother of his son. When asked how he planned to spend his time while the jury contemplates its decision, he said: "With friends and family, my children," he said, as seen in a video posted on TMZ.com. The three were photographed at the beach on Wednesday.
Alvarez had testified during Murray's trial, saying that during the months before Jackson's death, the doctor ordered packages to be delivered to her apartment. Records presented to the jury showed Murray ordered more than 4 gallons of propofol to be sent to his girlfriend's home.
Murray had told police in an interview following Jackson's death that the singer had complained about insomnia and requested that he order propofol and give it to him on a nightly basis.
Murray had told police that Jackson "begged" for the drug on the day of his death to help him sleep. He said that during the two months prior to Jackson's death, he gave the singer propofol "30 days a month, roughly every day" and that he "handled it fine," adding: "(Jackson) explained to me that he had taken it multiple times. He used it frequently on his tours. it was given to him by multiple other doctors."
Murray had also told police that in the days before Jackson's death, he tried to wean him off the drug by giving him other medications to treat his sleep problem.
Jackson's brother Tito and sister Rebbie have said they were aware the singer had a drug problem and that he had tried to intervene but added that they were unable to get close to him because of his security team, the Associated Press had reported.
One of Murray's lawyers, Ed Chernoff, told the jury in his closing argument that the doctor was "brought into this situation because he thought he could help ... Michael Jackson sleep normally. He was wrong. Because Dr. Murray had no control over the situation because of what was happening in the background. He was just a little fish in a big, dirty pond."
Prosecutors had said Murray was busy making and taking phone calls and text messages in the hours before Jackson's death and have criticized him not calling 911 the moment he found the singer unresponsive in a bedroom, which Walgren called "bizarre." Chernoff pointed out that the doctor administered CPR to the singer when he found him unresponsive in a bedroom.
The prosecution has also criticized Murray for allegedly not maintaining proper medical and monitoring equipment while treating Jackson and for giving him propofol, typically administered in hospitals during surgeries, outside of a medical clinic or office.
Check out a summary of the Conrad Murray trial proceedings.