Michael Jackson's ex-wife Debbie Rowe testifies, reveals 21 things
Debbie Rowe, an ex-wife of Michael Jackson and the biological mother of his two oldest children, broke down in tears while testifying at the late King of Pop's wrongful death trial in Los Angeles on Wednesday, Aug. 14.
Rowe used to work with Arnold Klein, a dermatologist who had treated Jackson. The singer's family is suing AEG Live, a concert promoter that had organized a mini tour for him before his 2009 death.
They claim the company hired Conrad Murray, the doctor who was jailed in 2011 for involuntary manslaughter over Jackson's death. AEG say the singer chose the physician himself and denies any wrongdoing. The company called Rowe to testify at the trial.
Rowe was married to Jackson between 1996 to 1999 and is the mother of their son Prince, 16, and daughter Paris, 17. Jackson's third child, his 11-year-old son Blanket, was born to a surrogate mother.
During her testimony, Rowe talked about Jackson's fear of pain, their first meeting and his medical treatments. Check out 21 things Rowe revealed during her testimony.
What Debbie Rowe revealed about Michael Jackson ...
1. She met Jackson when he arrived for an appointment at Dr. Arnold Klein's office, where she worked as an assistant, in either 1982 or 1984. They then became friends.
"I introduced myself, said, 'Nobody does what you do better, you're amazing. And nobody does what I do better, I'm amazing," Rowe testified, adding that the singer then laughed.
2. Jackson asked Rowe to be present while undergoing medical procedures. She cited several doctors who treated him, including Klein, a plastic surgeon and an internist.
3. She said Jackson was initially treated for acne at Klein's office and was given collagen injections. He was later treated for lupus and vitiligo -- a skin disease.
4. Jackson was not given pain medication during the first few times he received collagen injections. He was prescribed painkillers by another doctor after undergoing what Rowe called "extremely painful" surgery in 1984 to treat burns he suffered while filming a Pepsi commercial.
5. "Michael respected doctors tremendously that they went to school and studied. And meant no harm," Rowe said. "Unfortunately some of the doctors decided when Michael was in pain that they would try to outbid each other on who could give the better drug. So he listened to the doctors."
6. "Michael had a very low pain tolerance," Rowe said, crying in the courtroom. "His fear of pain was incredible and I think the doctors took advantage of him that way."
7. Rowe said that over the years, at Klein's office and at the office of plastic surgeon Steven Hoefflin, Jackson was treated with Diprivan, aka propofol -- the anesthetic Murray administered to the singer before he died -- "probably 10 times," including during acne treatments.
8. She said she was concerned that Hoefflin was "overprescribing medications" to Jackson and that the plastic surgeon and Klein would try to out-do each other with regard to the painkillers they would administer, adding: "These idiots were going back and forth all the time and not caring about him."
9. Rowe said Jackson wanted his plastic surgeon to inject steroids into his nose, saying that he had "extensive scarring" that made it difficult to breathe. She told the court that the doctor put him under general anesthesia but did not perform the procedure because he said he did not see the scarring. Rowe said the surgeon put tape on Jackson's nose and told the singer he had administered the injections.
10. Jackson saw Klein in the early 1990s, "not that often." He saw Hoefflin sometimes every six months, sometimes more often, Rowe said.
11. Rowe recalled a time she found Jackson under the influence of a painkiller called Dilaudid that Hosefflin had prescribed. She said she confiscated the pills and unplugged the phones in his hotel room.
"He liked to talk on the phone," she said. "You couldn't understand him. I didn't want him to embarrass himself. I was there all night."
12. Rowe said she eventually told Jackson he had a drug issue.
"I said you're taking too much, you can't take this forever," she said.
What Debbie Rowe revealed about herself ...
13. She was born in Spokane, Washington.
14. Her father was an Air Force pilot.
15. She breeds and trains American Quarter Horse and has raised American Paint Horses for 10 years.
16. She moved to Los Angeles when her parents divorced. She was 11 at the time.
17. She attended Hollywood High School and graduated in 1977. She attended Los Angeles Valley College for a year and studied to become a nurse technician.
18. She also studied to become an EMT (Emergency Medical Technician) and once worked for an ambulance company before she began her job as an assistant at Dr. Arnold Klein's office. She said: "He was a legend in his own mind. We had a very high profile clientele."
19. She began her job at Klein's office in the late 1970s and stopped working for him in 1997. She said she's not good with dates but is good with facts, joking: "I hated history."
20. She said she left her job after Jackson "encouraged me to go back to college."
21. She attended Antioch University in Los Angeles for two and half years and obtained a degree in psychology. She then left Los Angeles and in 2002, she moved to work as a horse breeder Palmdale, located 60 miles north. At the beginning of her testimony, Rowe joked: "I sat in traffic for 20 minutes! 20 minutes!"