Jackson’s doctor ordered to stand trial

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

LOS ANGELES - Michael Jackson’s doctor, Conrad Murray, will stand trial on a charge of involuntary manslaughter after a judge in his preliminary hearing ruled Tuesday that there was sufficient evidence for him to face a jury.

The ruling by Judge Michael Pastor came after six days of hearings in which the prosecutor presented evidence that Murray veered drastically from standard medical procedure in his treatment of Jackson, who died in June 2009 from an accidental overdose of the hospital-grade anesthetic propofol, mixed with other drugs.

Murray was the personal physician hired to care for Jackson before and during what was to have been the singer’s comeback tour.

According to witnesses called by the prosecution, Murray tried to hide evidence of Jackson’s propofol use, failed to monitor the singer’s condition, delayed calling for help, ordered hundreds of vials of the drug for Jackson’s use and failed to tell emergency room doctors that Jackson had taken the powerful sedative as a sleeping aid.

“Michael Jackson is gone. Michael’s kids do not have a father because of Murray,” Assistant District Attorney David Walgren said in his closing remarks, according to E! News. “Michael is not here because of the utterly inept actions of defendant Murray.”

The Houston-based physician has pleaded not guilty to the involuntary manslaughter charge. Murray faces up to four years in jail if convicted and had his medical license suspended Tuesday as part of the conditions for his bail.

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