Jackson Wrongful Death Trial Hits Home Stretch

By: Dana Brenklin

As jurors in the Jackson wrongful death lawsuit were greeted this afternoon, it was brought to their attention by Judge Palazuelos that we are now entering the home stretch of this 5 month long trial.

Jurors in the case were off for the last week and a half due to a family emergency with one of the jurors. That doesn’t mean that the attorneys were not being productive. Attorneys on both sides were in court almost every day last week battling it out, discussing verdict forms, jury instructions and everything else that will help get us to the finish line in a decent and orderly fashion.

Attorneys even had one last meeting out of the presence of the jury this morning. Once court got underway, some may have been surprised to see Mrs. Jackson in the audience and not in the witness box. It seems that defense’s Marvin Putnam had a change of heart and did not call the Jackson matriarch to the stand as his last witness. Some heard yesterday that she would not be taking the stand and instead Michael’s son Prince’s deposition would be shown or at least portions of it.  Well, that was not the case either.

The defense finished their case with Dr. Metzger’s video deposition. If you recall, that is where the defense left off last week.

Dr. Metzger testified to Michael being secretive and not telling him about other doctors he would see when he wasn’t in Los Angeles. He did say that Michael suffered from insomnia and that when not under stress his insomnia could be treated with Tylenol PM. Metzger says that he saw Michael in April of 2009 and stated completely opposite of more than a few witnesses, that Michael looked lucid, was bright eyed and not skinny, but muscular.

Several witnesses have testified in direct contrast to that, saying that Michael was dying, scared, skinny and incoherent.

The doctor that the former Mrs. Jackson, Debbie Rowe says was the only doctor that cared about Michael Jackson said they talked about the “This Is It” shows and they brainstormed on how to deal with his sleep issues during the upcoming shows. He says they never settled anything and that was the last time he saw or spoke to the king of pop.

Doctor Metzger says that Michael was a great and loving father and he was a very generous and caring man.

Plaintiff’s Brian Panish brought on a rebuttal witness at the end of the day, a Detective Scott Smith who says that the Defense’s Putnam and their witness and outside counsel Kathy Jorrie said there was going to be a two to three year show after “This Is It”. The defense argues the statement was taken out of context. Plaintiff’s Brian Panish asks the witness would he have written down in the report maybe or potential had she said that and also asks him if he was trained make such a distinction and the witness answered, “yes”.

Plaintiffs will call Dr. Metzger live against the defense’s objection tomorrow to clarify a few things and Friday should start the preparations for closing arguments set to begin Monday.

The case should be handed to the jury by next Thursday. The jury will be partially sequestered and closing arguments will be held in a larger courtroom.