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Coroner Rules Michael Jackson’s Death a Homicide While The King of Pop’s Mother Considers Filing Wrongful Death Lawsuit

The Associated Press says that a law enforcement officer has told them that the Los Angeles Coroner’s office has determined that Michael’s Jackson’s death was a homicide caused by a combination of drugs. By calling the singer’s death a homicide, this means that the pop star died as a result of another person. However, this doesn’t necessarily mean that the person committed a crime.

Results from forensic tests determined that propofol, a powerful anesthetic, and at least two sedatives, were in Jackson’s body when he suffered a fatal cardiac arrest on June 25. Dr. Conrad Murray, a cardiologist who was the singer’s personal physician in the weeks leading up to his death on June 25, administered the drugs to him.

Murray has been under investigation for manslaughter related to Jackson’s death. According to a search warrant affidavit that was unsealed yesterday, Murray had been giving Jackson 50 milligrams of propofol every night using an intravenous drip to treat his insomnia. He was worried, however, that Jackson was becoming addicted to the drug and had tried lowering his dosage to 25 milligrams while also giving him midazolam and lorazepam.

Early on June 25, Murray administered Valium to Jackson before giving him lorazepam and midazolam twice. The drugs didn’t work and Jackson demanded propofol, which finally helped him go to sleep. Soon after, the singer stopped breathing.

This latest news, which has not been officially confirmed, comes amidst reports that Michael’s mother, Katherine Jackson, is thinking about filing a wrongful death lawsuit. Murray and concert promoter AEG Live are two possible defendants. Jackson was preparing for a tour at the time of his death. There also may have been other doctors who enabled Jackson’s drug addiction.

Wrongful Death
A person or entity can be held liable for wrongful death even if the intention to inflict death did not exist and the person’s death was an accident. The surviving family members may still be able to pursue recovery for wrongful death if there is evidence to prove that the defendant’s negligence, recklessness, or carelessness contributed to the death.

Coroner Attributes Michael Jackson’s Death to Sedative, The Washington Post, August 25, 2009
Michael Jackson’s mother considering wrongful death lawsuit!, Justice News Flash, August 20, 2009

Related Web Resources:
Propofol, Drugs.com
Michael Jackson is Dead, Los Angeles Times, June 25, 2009
Our Boston wrongful death lawyers are dedicated to making sure families obtain the financial recovery they are seeking from the party liable for their loved one’s accidental death.