Doctor didn't tell paramedics he gave Jackson anaesthetic
Published 01/10/2011 | 05:00
The doctor charged in Michael Jackson's death never revealed that he had given the singer a powerful anaesthetic, a paramedic told a jury hearing the physician's involuntary manslaughter case yesterday.
Paramedic Richard Senneff said Dr Conrad Murray told him that he had only given Jackson the sedative lorazepam. He said Dr Murray initially said Jackson wasn't suffering from any condition.
Dr Murray eventually told medics that he was treating the singer for exhaustion and dehydration, he said. The doctor did not mention that he had been giving Jackson the surgical anaesthetic propofol to help the singer sleep.
Dr Murray appeared frantic when the paramedic arrived in the bedroom on the day of Jackson's death in June 2009, Mr Senneff said. He had to ask Dr Murray three times about what condition Jackson had before the doctor answered.
"He said, 'Nothing. He has nothing'," Mr Senneff said. "Simply, that did not add up to me."
The veteran paramedic said Jackson was cool to the touch, his eyes were open and dry and had an IV in his leg. Mr Senneff was one of four paramedics who tried to revive Jackson.
Dr Murray (58) has pleaded not guilty. If convicted, Dr Murray could face up to four years in prison and lose his medical licence.
Prosecutors contend the cardiologist repeatedly lied to medics and emergency room doctors about medications he had been giving Jackson.
Authorities contend Dr Murray administered a fatal dose of propofol and other sedatives. Dr Murray's attorneys claim Jackson gave himself the fatal dose after his doctor left the room.
Mr Senneff was the first paramedic to reach Jackson's bedroom. After trying multiple heart-starting medications and other efforts, Jackson was still lifeless.
Emergency room personnel at a nearby hospital advised Mr Senneff to declare Jackson dead in his bedroom, but the singer was transported because Dr Murray wanted life-saving efforts to continue.
Prosecutors yesterday also called an executive for the maker of a fingertip medical device used by Dr Murray to monitor oxygen in Jackson's blood.
Nonin Medical executive Bob Johnson told jurors the $275 (€205) device was not adequate to continuously monitor patients because it did not have an audible alarm and other features that would alert a caretaker to problems.
Dr Murray's trial is expected to last five weeks and is in its fourth day.