Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Judge has refused to delay trial for Michael Jackson's doctor


The judge refused the prosecution's request to delay the trial
The defense said it may want the jury sequestered, citing the Casey Anthony case

Dr. Conrad Murray's trial is set to start September 8
Murray is charged with involuntary manslaughter in connection with Jackson's death

Los Angeles (CNN) -- A Los Angeles County judge Wednesday refused to delay the trial of Michael Jackson's doctor, who's charged with involuntary manslaughter in the pop star's death.

Superior Court Judge Michael Pastor rejected the prosecution's request to again put off the trial of Conrad Murray. It's already been delayed twice since Murray invoked his right to a speedy trial after his arraignment in January.

A Los Angeles coroner ruled Jackson's death on June 25, 2009, was from an overdose of the surgical anesthetic propofol, combined with other drugs.

Murray's defense team is considering asking that the jury be sequestered because of the expected intense publicity. Attorney Michael Flanagan cited the Casey Anthony trial, and complained that if jurors see certain TV personalities discussing the case, it would be like constant final arguments by the prosecution.

Meanwhile, the judge said he will personally review about 14 hours of rehearsal video for the concert Michael Jackson was planning at the time of his death, to decide which parts of the video may be admitted at the trial.

Authorities say Murray, who was hired as Jackson's personal physician as the singer prepared for comeback concerts in London, administered the fatal dose of medicine. Defense attorney Ed Chernoff contends Jackson was "a desperate man in many respects" and in trying to help himself sleep, the pop star gave himself the fatal dose of surgical anesthesia while the doctor was not watching.

Jury selection was under way in May when the defense requested a delay so its expert witnesses could have more time to prepare for new experts hired by the prosecution. Pastor then dismissed hundreds of prospective jurors and rescheduled the trial to start September 8.

SOURCE  Alan Duke, CNN

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