A photo of Michael Jackson and obtained exclusively by ABC News may help illusrate that the late pop singer could not have injected himself with that fatal dose of propofol.
Taken by Jackson’s business associates in 2003, the photo vividly demonstrates the reaction Jackson had to multiple needle punctures, making it difficult for doctors to find a suitable vein for medical injections.
“Michael Jackson did not have good veins, in fact they were so poor he had to start this IV in a vein below the left knee,” Dr. Steven Shafer, the prosecution’s star witness, testified Thursday. “So the possibility of direct self injection seems extremely unlikely…You would not want to inject into a vein and miss because that would be extremely painful.”
In court Thursday, the prosecution hammered away at the defense’s contention that Jackson killed himself by self-injecting propofol, pointing to a medical condition they said made self-injection nearly impossible. The relentless attack was apparently designed to prove that Dr. Conrad Murray lied to police about how much propofol he gave the sleep-deprived singer.
A visibly-angry Murray sat and listened to the prosecution’s expert witness for the third straight court day.
Shafer also emphasized one of the prosecution themes: even if the jury believes the defense’s claim that it was Jackson who desperately grabbed and injected propofol into his own body, Murray is still at fault.
“He is a physician who has brought propofol into the room, started an intravenous, and provided access to propofol to a patient who may, in fact, be developing a dependency on sedatives,” Shafer said. “And, he has been entrusted by Michael Jackson to look after his safety every night. He is responsible for every drop of propofol in that room.”
The defense will cross examine Shafer today and is expected to begin its case Monday.