- (Photo: Reuters)
After over eight hours of deliberation, the jury of the Michael Jackson murder trial has found Conrad Murray guilty of involuntary manslaughter.
He has yet to be sentenced but could face up to four years in prison for the crime, and will lose his medical license.
Murray now probably regrets not taking the stand in his own defense; for a while, it seemed the celebrity doctor would attempt to clear himself, but in the face of the prosecution and his legal counsel, Murray eventually declined.
The prosecution built a concentrated case against the now-infamous doctor, recruiting leading experts in propofol- an anesthetic usually reserved for surgery- to help paint Murray as a facilitator of Jackson’s death. Dr. Steven Shafer wrote the guidelines and warnings for the drug, and thus was seen as highly credible concerning its usage.
As a counter, the defense found Dr. Paul White, regarded as the “father of propofol” because of his early research into the drug, to assist with their version of events. White downplayed Shafer’s authority on the subject of propofol, but when asked, said that he would not have given the drug to Jackson.
A majority of the case time was spent debating various aspects of medicine and evidence, but the true question was simple: was Conrad Murray negligent in continuing to administer propofol to an admitted addict of the drug?
This verdict could change the way “Hollywood doctors” treat their patients from now on.
Deepak Chopra, an internist, endocrinologist, and close personal friend of Jackson, said, "This cult of drug-pushing doctors, with their co-dependent relationships with addicted celebrities, must be stopped. Let's hope that Michael's unnecessary death is the call for action," he told The Daily Beast.
It certainly was.
The defense attempted to counter the allegations of negligent propofol use by Murray by highlighting the King of Pop’s use of a variety of other drugs, like alprazolam (an antianxiety agent),sertraline (an antidepressant), omeprazole, hydrocodone, paroxetine, carisoprodol, and hydromorphone.
When Murray found Jackson June 25, 2009, he said he found the star not breathing, but with a pulse. CPR was attempted by the doctor, and after some investigation by the LAPD, charges were filed against Murray.
The doctor pleaded not guilty to the charges, and the trial began Sept. 27 of this year.
Now, six weeks later, it seems the person responsible for Michael Jackson’s death has finally been brought to justice.