A toxicologist from the Los Angeles coroner's office will resume testimony today about the drugs found in Michael Jackson's system to begin the ninth day of proceedings in Dr. Conrad Murray's involuntary manslaughter trial.
The doctor who performed Michael Jackson's autopsy and ruled his death a homicide, Dr. Christopher Rogers, is among the potential witnesses, as is Los Angeles police detective Orlando Martinez. The court will break on Monday for Columbus Day.
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Martinez interviewed Murray after Michael Jackson's June 25, 2009 death. Murray told Martinez he'd been administering propofol to Jackson for two months as a sleep aid, and jurors may finally hear the recording of the two-hour interview Martinez conducted with Murray.
Coroner's office toxicologist Dan Anderson took the witness stand on Thursday, and described the drugs found in Jackson's system during the autopsy. The drugs included propofol, lidocaine, diazepam, nordiazepam, lorazepam, midazolam and ephedrine, he said.
The Los Angeles County coroner ruled Jackson died of acute propofol intoxication, and that sedatives were also a factor. Prosecutors contend Murray is criminally liable for Jackson's death because he recklessly administered the propofol, a potent surgical anesthetic drug, and was negligent in properly monitoring Jackson.
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Anderson also testified about the various drugs found in medical implements in Jackson's bedroom, including propofol and lidocaine in a syringe found on a table near the singer's bed, and propofol, lidocaine and flumazenil found in a different syringe and IV tubing found in the bedroom four days after Jackson died.
Anderson also testified that Demerol was not detected in Jackson's system, which is significant. During opening statements last week, defense attorney Ed Chernoff suggested the reason Jackson needed propofol and other drugs administered by Murray to sleep was because he had been receiving shots of Demerol from Beverly Hills dermatologist Dr. Arnold Klein.
The early part of Thursday's proceedings revolved around the testimony of coroner's office investigator Elissa Fleak, who weathered aggressive questioning by Chernoff about her note and photo-taking practices before finally admitting that no criminal investigation is conducted without mistakes.
CNN.com reported that defense and prosecution sources say the trial should go to the jury within the next two weeks. Murray faces up to four years in prison and loss of his medical license if convicted.