LOS ANGELES -- A Los Angeles jury will start deliberating the fate of Michael Jackson's doctor today after a six-week manslaughter trial stemming from the pop star's 2009 death.
In closing arguments, prosecutors said Jackson "paid with his life" for the criminal negligence of Dr. Conrad Murray. Defense lawyers said Murray was being held responsible for Jackson's own actions.
"For a crime to be proved, the prosecution has to show that Dr. Murray actually killed Michael Jackson," defense attorney Ed Chernoff told the jury Thursday.
Murray, who was hired to care for Jackson as he prepared for a series of planned comeback concerts, has pleaded not guilty to involuntary manslaughter. He did not testify at the trial and could face up to 4 years in prison if convicted.
Jackson was found lifeless at his Los Angeles mansion on June 25, 2009. He was later ruled to have died from an overdose of propofol, which is normally used in surgery, and sedatives. He was 50 years old.
The defense argued at trial the singer was dependent on propofol. Desperate to sleep, he likely gave himself a fatal dose of the powerful anesthetic, and also swallowed a handful of sedatives, without Murray's knowledge, defense lawyers argued.
Prosecutor David Walgren slammed that theory in his closing argument, calling the scenario presented at trial by a key defense expert "junk science" and "garbage science."