LOS ANGELES (October 2, 2013) - The verdict on the civil lawsuit involving Michael Jackson’s death was read today in Downtown Los Angeles. After 5 months of trial and 14 hours of jury deliberation, the jury ultimately found on behalf of the Defendants, AEG. This means that AEG, and its executives who were named in the lawsuit, will not have to pay any damages to Katherine Jackson for the loss of her son.Prior to entering the deliberation room, the jury was given a verdict form with several questions. In order to award any damages to the Jackson family, the jury must answer in the affirmative a list of 5 questions. A “No” response to any question would end the analysis and end the case, effectively giving to victory to the defense.
The two question the jury answered were:
1. ”Did AEG live hire Dr Murray?”
2. ”Was Murray unfit or incompetent to perform the work for which he was hired?”
Because the jury answered “No” on the 2nd question, the jury did not have to proceed to the other questions on the verdict form. There were a total of 16 questions on the verdict form. From the perspective of the lawyers conducting the trial in a case, juries can sometimes be unpredictable. Wrongful Death attorney
and civil litigation expert Edmond El Dabe states “The jury’s verdict was not necessarily consistent with the evidence. The jury stated they did not think that Dr. Murray was unfit or incompetent, yet he has already been prosecuted in criminal court and had his license yanked.” Dr. Murray’s medical license has been restricted in California, Nevada and Texas. ”Its clear that Dr. Murray is incompetent. A doctor cannot administer that kind of anesthesia to a person in a private home.”
An autopsy of Michael Jackson revealed that he was administered Propofol (Diprivan), a short acting and powerful intravenous anesthetic used to put patients to sleep during hospital procedures. Not intended for home use, it can only be administered in hospital setting where there is life-saving equipment available in the event an emergency resuscitation is required.
Many fans of Michael Jackson are expressing confusion as the verdict. Both sets of attorneys will now file various post trial motions, including motions for new trials, which will be heard in the next several months. California law also gives the prevailing party the right to pursue the losing party for costs and attorney fees. It is not clear whether AEG will pursue the Jackson family for costs and fees incurred in defending the case.
The trial began on April 2, 2013 in the courtroom of Judge Yvette Palazuelos.