LOS ANGELES - A jury in California has convicted Dr. Conrad Murray of involuntary manslaughter in the June 2009 death of pop singer Michael Jackson.
The 12-member jury reached the guilty verdict Monday after less than two days of deliberations. The trial lasted several weeks, with nearly 50 witnesses being called to the stand. Hundreds of people, many of them fans of the late entertainer, lined up outside the court as the verdict was announced and cheered the decision. Murray sat stone-faced as he heard the decision.
A short time later, Murray was handcuffed and taken into custody without bail until sentencing on November 29. Murray appeared calm as he was led out of the courtroom.
Murray faced the involuntary manslaughter charge for giving Jackson the powerful anesthetic, propofol, to help him sleep and then failing to properly monitor the singer’s health. Prosecutors said Murray lacked the equipment that could have saved the singer’s life.
A series of witnesses said propofol should only be used in the operating room, under strict monitoring. The drug was not approved for use as a sleep aid.
The defense argued that Jackson took the propofol himself and overdosed. Murray’s lawyers said there was no proof the doctor did anything wrong. Murray did not take the stand in his defense.
Murray, a cardiologist, faces a sentence of four years in prison and the loss of his medical license.
Jackson died June 25, 2009 at his rented Los Angeles mansion. He was 50-years-old.
Aside from the criminal trial, Jackson’s father has filed a wrongful death suit that accuses Murray of lying to the doctors and paramedics who tried to save the singer’s life.
Source: VOA News