Dr. Conrad Murray and Michael Jackson
Michael Jackson's doctor charged
After being formally with involuntary manslaughter, Dr. Conrad Murray was released on bail; he also had to surrender his passport
By Kathy Williamson
Sentinel Contributing Writer
According to a complaint filed on Monday by the Los Angeles County district attorney's office, Conrad Murray, M.D., Michael Jackson's personal physician at the time of his death was charged with a single count of Involuntary Manslaughter, in violation of Penal Code Section 192(b), a felony.
Dr. Murray arrived at the Airport Branch Courthouse at approximately 12:55 p.m. and was met by Jackson fans, waving signs asking for "justice" and shouting "murderer!"
An international cadre of media gathered again, as they did in the rain on Friday in anticipation of the surrender of Murray. However, that appearance and press conference was abruptly canceled. At issue was an alleged dispute between the D.A., law enforcement and Murray's attorneys as to details of his arrest/surrender and if he would be handcuffed and jailed. It was uneventfully resolved.
The formal complaint - The People of the State of California v. Conrad Robert Murray (02/19/53), Case No. SA073164 - stated that Murray "unlawfully and without malice" did "kill Michael Joseph Jackson... in the commission of an unlawful act not amounting to a felony; and in the commission of a lawful act which might have produced death, in an unlawful manner, and without due caution and circumspection."
Murray pleaded "not guilty" and was released within hours on a bail of $75,000. Murray will return to court on April 5 in downtown Los Angeles when a date will be set for a preliminary hearing. If the cardiologist is ultimately found guilty, he could face a maximum sentence of four years.
Superior Court Judge Keith L. Schwartz imposed restrictions on Murray that included the surrender of his passport. Schwartz stated, "In the states of California and Texas, you may not, under any circumstances use any anesthetic agent, specifically propafol... use... prescribe... have it in any manner."
Both of Jackson's parents and siblings were present at the courthouse. Upon arrival, brother Jermaine said, "This is a long time coming."
Later, as the visibly displeased family exited the premises, Jermaine described the proceedings as "B.S."
Jackson's mother Katherine said, "He's lying. He's guilty. No one was there but him."
During the seven-month investigation, Murray admitted that he left Jackson alone in the singer's Holmby Hills bedroom on June 25, after administering an intravenous dose of the anesthetic propofol for insomnia.
When Murray returned, Jackson was reportedly not breathing. There is a discrepancy regarding the amount of time that Murray was absent. He claims that he was away for two minutes to use the restroom. Yet, according to affidavits, the doctor's cell phone logged a 45-minute call during that time.
The office of the L.A. County Coroner recorded that Jackson's death was a homicide due to acute propofol intoxication combined with the effects of other sedatives.
Murray's attorney, Ed Chernoff, announced that the doctor would return to his practice in Nevada, this week.
Over the weekend, Murray publicly visited the gravesite of his former patient, Michael Jackson.