One of the most high profile court cases of recent times has come to a close this month with Dr. Conrad Murray being found guilty of the involuntary manslaughter of pop legend Michael Jackson.
The Californian courtroom declared that negligent administration of prescription drugs by the stars personal doctor was what caused Jackson’s death in 2009 – a verdict giving ‘relief’ to many fans worldwide.
Murray, 58, was entrusted to administer Michael Jackson with an anaesthetic drug to help the troubled 50 year old with sleep issues, however, it was an eventual overdose of the drug which led to Jackson’s passing just before his comeback shows at the O2 arena in London.
The verdict deemed Murray negligent for providing the drug, propofol, without proper equipment or facilities, even though his defence claimed that Jackson had given himself more of the drug whilst the accomplished doctor was absent.
The defence also claimed that Jackson was a drug addict and although his volatile relationship with prescription drugs was no secret, this declaration hints at the defences’ desperation to excuse Murray’s professional lapses.
It is questionable, however, whether Murray really had a chance. Many would agree that Michael Jackson played a role in his own death be it directly or indirectly, though California law states that Murray should have known better.
Yet, it is hard not to feel remorse for a man who has quickly become a hate figure for ardent Jackson fans; some have coined phrases such as doctor of death to describe him – but seemingly death was never his intention.
Although, careless and arguably sub-standard professional practice cannot be overlooked it is important not to declare Murray a murderer. He is now currently awaiting sentencing on the 29th of November this year and is faced with a potential four years imprisonment.
LaToya Jackson, Michael Jackson’s sister, feels that, “justice was served” and went on to explain that “Michael is watching over us” – a comforting thought for the millions of fans who cherish the 20th century icon.