Conrad Murray, private physician to Michael Jackson at the time of his death in June 2009, is to stand trial for the involuntary manslaughter of the ‘Thriller’ star. The ruling came from a Los Angeles Superior Court Judge, Michael Pastor. The involuntary manslaughter charge is a lesser one than murder and is defined as ‘an unintentional killing without malice’.
Michael Jackson’s death was found to be caused mainly by an overdose of Propofol, a very strong anesthetic not usually used outside of surgical procedures. However, Murray had been administering Propofol to Michael Jackson to help with his chronic insomnia. Jackson employees also testified that Dr. Murray had ordered them to clear away empty vials that had contained the drug and to cover up the star’s use of Propofol and the doctor’s administering of it.
Dr. Conrad Murray had been hired by the star specifically as he rehearsed for a series of comeback concerts which were only days away when he died.
Telephone records show that, rather than monitoring Michael Jackson’s condition after giving him the Propofol on the night that the star died, as one would in clinical conditions, Murray called his girlfriend. However, his defense team have argued that Michael Jackson may have given himself more of the drug.
Dr. Murray has pleaded not guilty to the charge of involuntary manslaughter which, if proved, carries a maximum jail term of up to four years. He has already had his California medical license suspended while the investigation is in progress.