Michael Jackson's Death Ruled a Homicide, Caused By Lethal Drug Cocktail

LA coroner announces late King of Pop died of acute propofol intoxication.

ByABC News
August 28, 2009, 4:53 PM

Aug. 28, 2009— -- It's official: Michael Jackson's death was caused by a lethal combination of prescription drugs.

Today, the Los Angeles County Coroner's office released a statement saying the late King of Pop died because of acute propofol intoxication. The office cited benzodiazepine effect as another condition contributing to his death.

Propofol and lorazepam were cited as the primary drugs responsible for Jackson's death. The statement noted that other drugs detected in his system were Midazolam, Diazepam, Lidocaine and Ephedrine.

The coroner ruled the manner of death a homicide.

The coroner's announcement comes a day after newly unsealed search warrants revealed that police found marijuana and numerous empty drug bottles at Jackson's home shortly after he died.

Two bags of marijuana, a bottle of the drug temazepam, which is used to treat sleeplessness, empty bottles of the sedatives lorzaepam and diazepam were discovered during the search. Police also uncovered four more empty pill bottles with no sign of what they may have contained.

The warrants, which were served on June 29, also say that the day Jackson died, while investigators were at the house, "family members of the decedent notified Los Angeles County Coroner's Assistant Chief Ed Winter that they had located a quantity of tar heroin in [Jackson's] bedroom on the second floor of the residence. Winter notified LAPD detectives of the found evidence." The warrant fails to mention if the evidence really turned out to be heroin.

Another recently unsealed search warrant reveals that on the morning of his death, Jackson had "lethal levels" of the powerful anesthetic propofol in his blood.

According to the warrant,Jackson received a cocktail of painkillers and sedatives including the powerful anesthetic propofol.

The Los Angeles Chief Medical Examiner-Coroner, Dr. Sathyavagiswaran, indicated that he had reviewed the preliminary toxicology results and his preliminary assessment of Jackson's cause of death was due to lethal levels of propofol (diprivan)," according to the search warrant affidavit.

Jackson's personal physician Dr. Conrad Murray told investigators he had been treating Jackson for several weeks and had been trying to wean the singer off propofol by administering a series of prescription sedatives including lorazepam and midazolam.