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CNN LIVE EVENT/SPECIAL
Michael Jackson: His Final Days
Aired June 26, 2010 - 19:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
MICHAEL JACKSON, KING OF POP: This is the final curtain call.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: His last night was spent on stage.
TRAVIS PAYNE, CHOREOGRAPHER, "THIS IS IT": I said, all right, I love you. He goes, love you more; see you tomorrow. And then tomorrow never came.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We have a -- a gentleman here that needs help, and he's not breathing.
TITO JACKSON, BROTHER OF MICHAEL JACKSON: Right then, I knew something was terribly wrong. I said, Janet, is he dead? And she said he's gone.
DON LEMON, CNN ANCHOR: Do you think there was some sort of conspiracy to kill your brother?
JERMAINE JACKSON, BROTHER OF MICHAEL JACKSON: Absolutely.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: How are you feeling?
M. JACKSON: Good, great.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It's possible that Michael had been using this anesthetic drug maybe five or six years ago.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Elvis was huge, but Michael went around the world. He was off the planet.
LEMON (voice-over): Tonight, a behind-the-scenes look into the final days of Michael Jackson.
As the sun rose above the exclusive Los Angeles Hills, inside Michael Jackson's mansion, the entertainer began the morning of June 24, 2009, doing what he loved, preparing for a show.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Now do it slow.
PAYNE: He and would start about noon, 1:00 at his home. We would dance a few hours and stretch.
You have to have a full attitude. You have a half attitude. Do the full one. LEMON: Travis Payne was Michael Jackson's long-time choreographer.
PAYNE: We were on a journey with Michael that was going to return him to the stage, you know, that he loved so much. And I know that we were eight days away from leaving for London.
LEMON: The stage is where Michael was most at ease. On stage, there was no one better.
Since age five, he electrified audiences around the world with hit songs like "I Want You Back." And the world appeared ready to welcome him back . It had been 12 years since Jackson's last major performance. The King of Pop was poised to regain his throne.
M. JACKSON: This is it. I mean this is really it. This is the final -- this is the final curtain call.
LEMON: According to the contract with concert promoters AEG, Michael was to perform 50 concerts at the O2 center in London over a nine month period.
M. JACKSON: I will be performing the songs my fans want to hear.
LEMON: But was Michael physically up to the challenge? Both Michael and AEG had a lot on the line.
JIM MORET, "INSIDE EDITION": It was his comeback. It was his renaissance, his rebirth on stage. After so many years of being out of the spotlight, a lot of people were wondering if he could pull this off.
M. JACKSON: This is it. And see you in July.
LEMON: But there were questions about whether Jackson was ready. Kenny Ortega, the direct for "This Is It," called a private meeting at Jackson's home. AEG's CEO Randy Phillips attended the meeting.
RANDY PHILLIPS, AEG CEO: Kenny was concerned that he wasn't coming to enough rehearsals, that he was taking a little too nonchalantly. And Michael explained that he needed Kenny to build the house, and then he would come in and paint the front door.
LEMON: However, Brian Oxman, an attorney for Michael's father, Joe Jackson, claims AEG had deeper concerns about the entertainer.
BRIAN OXMAN, ATTORNEY: He was too sleepy. He was taking medications which made him tired and unable to perform, and that unless he got his act together, the producers, the promoters were going to pull the plug on the concert series.
LEMON: On the afternoon of June 24th, Jackson arrived at the Staples Center in downtown Los Angeles.
Rehearsals for "This Is It" often ran late into the night. On the surface, the man who many say was born to perform never looked better.
(on camera): Was his voice getting stronger over a period of rehearsals?
LEMON: Was his dancing getting stronger?
LEMON: His body?
LEMON (voice-over): Michael Beardon, the musical direct for "This Is It" was on stage that last night.
MICHAEL BEARDON, DIRECTOR, "THIS IS IT": He looked at back me after he did one number. He looked at me as if to say, yeah, I'm Michael Jackson. I've got this. He looked really good, and I teased some of the dancers when I see them, because MJ was 50 years old, and they were like half his age. And he was still wearing them out.
LEMON: On stage, always a perfectionist. Off stage, a legend with a sense of humor.
BEARDON: He was making big-money decisions, and then he would lean over to me and just say silly stuff like, we should play the Three Stooges. I would go, what, MJ? Oh, no, I don't like that. Can I have more of this or this or this. I like Mo.
LEMON: But beneath the surface, concerns from the very moment the concert tour was announced. Jackson was pushing himself to the brink.
RODNEY JERKINS, RECORD PRODUCER: How is he going to do these shows?
LEMON: Record producer Rodney Jerkins.
JERKINS: Fifty dates at 50 years old? That's a lot of dates. And I was -- I kept saying, I just hope he gets a physical trainer, someone to really work him out, to make sure he's healthy and prepared.
LEMON: Jermaine Jackson says his little brother was ready.
J. JACKSON: I mean, he could have did 200 shows there.
LEMON: I sat down with Jermaine, following band rehearsals for an upcoming tour to Gambia.
J. JACKSON: I felt that he could do it, because of the way the shows were spaced out. And it wasn't like every day.
See, like, when we first started, we were doing one nighters. Every day, you're in a different place, riding a bus and sleeping on top of each other. That's tough. But this was -- and you didn't have to take the stage down. You were in one location.
PHILLIPS: I think that night, he finally accepted, down deep in whatever the inner reaches of an artist's soul are, that he could do this.
LEMON (on camera): Was anything out of the ordinary that night?
JERKINS: The only thing that might have been out of the ordinary is that Michael was -- had a serious glow about him that night.
JERKINS: You could see his confidence growing and you could see physically he was able to do the things that he wanted to do.
PHILLIPS: We were walking to our cars, and he put his arm around me at the Staples Center and he said, thank you for getting me here. Now I know I can do it and take it from here.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Hold for applause. Hold for applause, slow umbrella, fade out.
LEMON: Jackson left the Staples Center around midnight and headed to his rented mansion in the posh L.A. neighborhood of Holmby Hills. Just 12 hours later, however, nothing would ever be the same.
(voice-over): Coming up --
T. JACKSON: Your mom said get down here, it doesn't look good.
LEMON: The tragic news no family wants to hear.
T. JACKSON: I said oh my gosh, what's going on?
LEMON (voice-over): A secluded LA mansion, a 911 call.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He's not breathing?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes, he's not breathing sir.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: OK, and he's not conscious?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No, he's not conscious, sir.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: OK.
LEMONA 50-year-old man in distress. That man is Michael Jackson.
WOLF BLITZER, CNN ANCHOR: Michael Jackson, the King of Pop --
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: -- was taken to the hospital, and there are rumors --
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He was apparently administered CPR in the ambulance. LEMON: As the news break, Jackson's brothers, Tito and Jermaine, begin to hear grim and troubling reports from loved ones and the media.
(on camera): Do you remember the day, where you were, and the time?
T. JACKSON: Oh, yeah. I'll never forget it. I was -- I happened to be home. My middle son, Terrell, called me on the phone and said, dad, is it true, what they are saying on TV about Uncle Michael? I said what are they saying? They say he was rushed to the hospital and he's not breathing, something like that?
J. JACKSON: You guys called. CNN called my wife and said, do you know anything about Michael being rushed to the hospital? I said no. And I called my mother immediately. And she said she was on her way to the hospital.
LEMON (voice-over): Jermaine's mother, Katherine, confirmed his worst fears.
J. JACKSON: She was already at the hospital, and I called her back, and I heard her say he's dead. And I couldn't believe to hear my mother say her child is dead, my brother. And I got weak, very, very weak.
LEMON: Tito Jackson couldn't get ahold of his mother as he raced to UCLA Medical Center, but a call from his sister Janet stopped in his tracks.
T. JACKSON: I said Janet, is he dead? And she said he's gone. And I just melted right there, and I didn't know what to do. I pulled over in this parking lot and just cried for like 15 minutes and went home.
LEMON: Jermaine Jackson did make it to the hospital as the crowds and media begun to swell outside. Inside, his brother Michael lay dead.
J. JACKSON: They had -- they had a sheet wrapped on top of him. I could feel his skin. It was still soft and smooth. And I just kissed his forehead so much, and just talked to him. The memories, that's what hurt. And to know that there would never be another Jackson Five.
LEMON: Despite his overwhelming grief, it was Jermaine who delivered the family's official announcement that Michael was dead.
(on camera): And you have to go out from that hospital, and you have to tell the world.
J. JACKSON: Um-hum. I couldn't believe that I was announcing my brother's death for the world. It was -- I was numb, very numb, because it was like a nightmare.
My brother, the legendary King of Pop, Michael Jackson, passed away on Thursday, June 25, 2009, at 2:26 p.m.
LEMON: Were you able to see Jermaine do the press conference? T. JACKSON: I saw it on television. It was sad. I wish I could have been there, but I never would have made it in time.
LEMON: What were you thinking when you saw it?
T. JACKSON: Shocking and hurting and just all type of emotions hitting you at one time.
LEMON: Today, you can't to it without crying?
T. JACKSON: No, still. It's hard. It's really a hard thing, because Michael was so special to not just me, but to everyone.
LEMON: Coming up, Michael Jackson's secret world of addiction.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He also had many doctors who were always willing to write new prescriptions.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This is CNN, breaking news.
BLITZER: Michael Jackson, 50 years old, the King of Pop, has died.
LEMON (voice-over): As news of Michael Jackson's death sent shock waves around the globe, the search for answers was just beginning.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We're just looking for any evidence of foul play or anything like that.
LEMON: Within hours, investigators were on the scene of Jackson's Hollywood mansion. They soon discovered the singer had his own personal pharmacy. Some of the prescription drugs were labeled, many were not. The extent of Michael Jackson's drug use was starting to emerge. Some of his closest friends and family were stunned.
J. JACKSON: I only knew of what he was taking to sleep. That's it. Hearing all of these other things, which I can't even pronounce the words, I wasn't aware. If that led to dependency on anything else, I wouldn't know. But I'm just saying that every time I saw Michael, he was 1,000 percent coherent, 1,000 percent, with a smile on his face.
LEMON: Michael's addiction did run much deeper, and many within his inner circle were aware.
GOTHAM CHOPRA, SON OF DEEPAK CHOPR: He certainly wasn't worried about concealing it.
LEMON: Gotham Chopra was a personal friend of Jackson's.
CHOPRA: He knew endless doctors and he knew how to manipulate certain system. He also had many doctors who were always willing to write new prescriptions. They just wanted to be around him and they wanted that aura of his attention.
LEMON: Gotham's father, physician Deepak Chopra, says Michael once asked him to write a prescription for a narcotic.
DEEPAK CHOPRA, PHYSICIAN: I said I wasn't going to write a prescription, and then I confronted him. He started to cry. He said, you don't understand, I'm in a lot of pain.
LEMON: Chopra said he feared for Jackson's health. So, along with a member of Michael's family, he arranged an intervention.
D. CHOPRA: He was so upset, angry, burst into a temper, left the room.
LEMON: According to biographer Randy Taraborelli, Michael Jackson was first introduced to prescription drugs in 1984.
Jackson's scalp was severely burned during a filming of this Pepsi commercial.
RANDY TARABORELLI, MICHAEL JACKSON BIOGRAPHER: I was at the hospital that night. And I remember the doctors saying that they were trying to give him pain medication back then, and he would not take it. Ultimately, he did take some because the pain was so great, but it was a big issue.
LEMON (on camera): When do you think the drug use started?
TARBORELLI: I believe that a lot of it had to do with the stress of the 1993 allegations.
LEMON (voice-over): In 1993, Michael Jackson was accused of sexually molesting a 13-year-old boy. Jackson strongly denied the allegations during a televised statement.
M. JACKSON: I am particularly upset by the handling of this mass matter by the incredible, terrible mass media.
LEMON: But eventually settled the case for 20 million dollars. No charges were ever filed. During that same televised statement, Jackson also admitted publicly he had a drug addiction.
M. JACKSON: As you may already know, after my tour ended, I remained out of the country undergoing treatment for a dependency on pain medication.
TARBORELLI: Those allegations in '93, the first set of allegations, began the ruination of Michael.
LEMON: Ten years later, more accusations of child molestation. This time there would not be a settlement. Charges were filed, a highly publicized trial followed.
Faced with the possibility of prison, Jackson was in the fight for his life. The stress took a toll, even though he was cleared of all charges. (on camera): What did you see in his eyes?
TARBORELLI: I could see in his eyes that he was dying, that he was gone. Already on verdict day, he was not there. He was so vacant.
LEMON (voice-over): Following the verdict in 2005, Jackson spent the next four years focused on his children. Six months before his death, Michael Jackson met nurse practitioner Sherilyn Lee. She came to Jackson's home to treat one of his kids for a cold. One day, Lee says Jackson asked her to help him sleep. She agreed to stay over and watch his sleeping patterns.
SHERILYN LEE, NURSE PRACTIONER: This was 10:30, 11:00 at night. I said call me, so I can kind of monitor and see what's going on. So he slept for about three and a half hours. Then he jumped up. He looked at me with his eyes wide open. I said, Michael, are you OK? He said yes, but I just want you to see I can't sleep.
LEMON: Lee says Michael requested Propofol, a drug few people had heard of. It is a powerful anaesthetic that's only used in operating rooms or other clinical settings. Propofol isn't available as a pill. It can only be given intravenously. It puts a patient out almost instantly.
LEE: I looked at him and that was the first time I got this chill through my body. And I said, Michael, if you take that medicine, you might not wake up.
LEMON: Weeks later, Lee heard from Michael Jackson one final time. He wanted to see her right away. The singer complained that one side of his body was cold, the other was hot.
LEE: I said, you know, I can't come, Michael. You need to go to the hospital. You need to go to the hospital.
LEMON: Just four days later, Michael Jackson was dead.
D. CHOPRA: Michael was a tortured soul. Ten years ago, he said to me, have you heard of this thing that takes you to the edge of the valley of death, and then brings you back from there?
LEMON: Next --
T. JACKSON: Why wasn't the doctor there?
LEMON: What happened the last hours of Michael Jackson's life?
T. JACKSON: Why was he left alone? There's a lot of questions.
(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE) DON LEMON, CNN SPECIAL INVESTIGATIONS CORRESPONDENT: CNN ANCHOR (voice-over): As investigators began to unravel Michael Jackson's final hours, a timeline emerged. A timeline detailed in the search warrant affidavit. This is what investigators believe happened based on evidence and eyewitness accounts, including those of Jackson's personal physician, Dr. Conrad Murray.
On the last night of his life, Jackson made his way though L.A. towards Beverly Hills. As he did, few really knew the dark secrets the pop legend carried with him to 100 North Carolwood Drive.
(on camera): Michael Jackson spent his final hours here at this rented mansion in L.A. According to the search warrant affidavit, his personal physician, Dr. Conrad Murray told police it was a restless and ultimately a drug-filled night with Jackson battling his chronic insomnia allegedly pleading with Murray to give him a powerful and dangerous anesthetic called Propofol.
(voice-over): Randy Taraborrelli is a Jackson biographer and life- long confidant.
J. RANDY TARABORRELLI, BIOGRAPHER: I used to always say and I still believe that Michael would have paid $1 million for a good night's sleep. And that's not an exaggeration. He actually would have.
JIM MORET, INSIDE EDITION: Michael Jackson was plagued with insomnia for years.
LEMO: Journalist Jim Moret also spent years covering Jackson.
MORET: He was just plagued with this horrible, inability to go to sleep. And he would rely upon doctors to provide him with medication so that he could sleep.
LEMON: According to police, Jackson's final hours, beyond these windows, involved a cocktail of drugs, allegedly administered by Dr. Murray.
(on camera): Based on the affidavit, Dr. Murray's efforts to get Jackson to sleep began with a 10 milligram tablet of Valium around 1:30 a.m. It didn't work. So according to the affidavit, Dr. Murray injected the singer with an anti-anxiety drug. By 3:00 a.m., however, Jackson was still awake, so Murray told police he tried another drug, a sedative. That didn't work either.
(voice-over): What Jackson really wanted according to Murray was the anesthetic Propofol. Murray told investigators that Jackson repeatedly asked for the drug that final night, but insisted he repeatedly denied the singer. Murray claims he was actually trying to wean Jackson off of Propofol at the time, fearing he formed an addiction. Ed Chernoff is Murray's attorney.
ED CHERNOFF, CONRAD MURRAY'S ATTORNEY: He doesn't have any specialized training in addiction recovery. That's true. Who else is addicted to a drug like Propofol? There's no protocol for how to wean someone off a drug like that. MORET: The theory that Conrad Murray was trying to break Michael Jackson of a Propofol addiction in the hours, the last hours of his life is kind of an interesting theory. There doesn't seem to be any doubt that Michael Jackson knew what drugs he wanted and when he wanted them. And Michael Jackson appeared to be able to get whatever he wanted whenever he wanted.
LEMON: According to the affidavit, as dawn broke at 1100 North Carolwood Drive on June 25, 2009, Michael Jackson still awake and restless, apparently wasn't taking no for an answer anymore when it came to Propofol.
TARABORRELLI: Michael Jackson did not like to be told what to do, and that's what a huge issue. You know, and anybody who worked for Michael and knew Michael will tell you that this is a man who lived his life on his own terms.
LEMON: After hours of denying Jackson Propofol, police investigators say Dr. Murray finally relented. At 10:40 a.m., he gave him the pop legend 25 milligrams of the anesthetic through an IV drip and Jackson finally went to sleep.
According to the search warrant affidavit, at 10:50 a.m., Dr. Murray got up to go to the bathroom. A few minutes later, Murray says he returned to find his very famous patient no longer breathing. He began CPR.
MORET: The cook at the house told me that there were certain things that seemed to happen every day. Around 8:00, 9:00 in the morning, Conrad Murray would come downstairs for breakfast. He'd often be holding a canister of oxygen. But on this morning, the morning of Jackson's death, he didn't. It was much later, and he called for the children.
LEMON: According to the search warrant affidavit, Murray asked Jackson's eldest son, Prince Michael, to come upstairs, and then continued CPR.
MORET: And if you're putting the pieces together from a prosecution standpoint, you could argue that Conrad Murray wanted witnesses to say they saw Conrad Murray trying to revive Michael Jackson.
LEMON: At 11:18 that fateful morning, police say Dr. Murray made a series of three cell phone calls, spanning 47 minutes. This timeline suggests that more than an hour had passed since Jackson was found not breathing. It is a timeline that Murray and his attorney fiercely contest.
CHERNOFF: I think it's clear that what they're doing is hypothesize about the timeline. That's not what happened. That's not what the doctor told them.
LEMON: What is not in dispute is this.
CALLER: We have a gentleman here that needs help and he's not breathing. He's not breathing and we need to -- we're trying to pump him but he's not -- he's not.
911: OK. OK, how old is he?
CALLER: He's 50 years old, sir.
LEMON: At approximately 12:22 p.m. Jackson security guard Alberto Alvarez made a 911 call, and Los Angeles fire station 71 responded.
CAPTAIN STEVE RUTA (ph), LOS ANGELES FIRE DEPARTMENT: When they got on scene, it's a large mansion, not too far from here.
LEMON: Captain Steve Ruta (ph) is a spokesman for the L.A. Fire Department.
RUTA: They were directed to the patient, which was upstairs in the home. And they found their patient was Michael Jackson, later identified to us as Michael Jackson, pulseless and not breathing. Pulseless and not breathing means no heartbeat and no breaths.
MORET: Conrad Murray was a doctor, and when paramedics came, it was within Conrad Murray's purview to call the death or not call the death. He did not call that death. He wanted it done at the hospital.
LEMON: So Jackson, with no heartbeat and not breathing was taken to UCLA Medical Center along with Dr. Murray.
RUTA: Since he took on the responsibility at the scene, remember, I told you that we have to ask the doctors, even though you're a doctor, do you take full responsibility for this patient? Are you willing to take full responsibility? And he said he would. So he followed through and rode with the paramedics in the ambulance right behind me, just a short ride to UCLA.
LEMON: Michael Jackson officially pronounced dead at 2:26 p.m., June 25, 2009, by a doctor at UCLA. That's nearly four hours after Dr. Murray told investigators he noticed the singer was not breathing. Murray, according to the search warrant affidavit, refused to sign the death certificate. The Los Angeles coroner would rule Michael Jackson's death a homicide. The cause of death? Acute Propofol intoxication. Dr. Murray would later be charged with involuntary manslaughter.
Coming up, accusations of a conspiracy. Are there others to blame for killing Michael Jackson?
(on camera): You think someone killed him?
JERMAINE JACKSON, MICHAEL JACKSON'S BROTHER: Oh, yes, yes.
LEMON: Do you know who they are?
J. JACKSON: Oh, of course.
DON LEMON, CNN SPECIAL INVESTIGATIONS CORRESPONDENT: Michael Jackson is buried on a hilltop here at Forest Lawn Memorial Cemetery. His body lies in a highly secured mausoleum, off limits to the public. One year after his death, Jackson's personal physician, Dr. Conrad Murray, is charged with involuntary manslaughter, but some close to Jackson believe there are others responsible for his death.
JERMAINE JACKSON, MICHAEL JACKSON'S BROTHER: You only make a change for once in my life.
LEMON (voice-over): Jermaine Jackson was closer to his brother than just about anyone else. He claims Michael was murdered.
J. JACKSON: He said to my mother that they're trying to kill me.
LEMON (on camera): Do you think Conrad Murray was part of that? Was he complicit?
J. JACKSON: I think he's kind of like a fall guy.
LEMON: So you think he knew? Do you think he did that on purpose, Conrad Murray?
J. JACKSON: I think he knew the players. And I think if you squeeze his hand hard enough he will say.
LEMON (voice-over): Jermaine is convinced his brother's death is not simply a tragic accident.
J. JACKSON: I do know that there were evils, conspirators and people who just did not want to see him get bigger, and so we're busy trying to bring all of this together. They knew who they are. We know who they are as well.
LEMON: And who do you think they are?
J. JACKSON: They are just people in the industry. When you become so big, you have enemies. This was done to him purposefully.
LEMON: You think someone killed him purposefully?
J. JACKSON: Oh, yes, yes. It will come out.
LEMON: So you think there was some sort of conspiracy to take to kill your brother?
J. JACKSON: Absolutely.
LEMON: So who was behind it then?
J. JACKSON: They know who they are.
LEMON: Do you know who they are?
J. JACKSON: Oh, of course. Of course. LEMON: Do you want to say who they are?
J. JACKSON: No, I can't say that.
LEMON (voice-over): But Joseph Jackson, the patriarch of the Jackson family is saying who he thinks is responsible for his son's death. Concert promoter AEG Live. He filed a 160-page complaint against the company with the California Medical Board. CNN obtained a copy of it.
(on camera): You say at the heart of it is --
BRIAN OXMAN, JOE JACKSON'S ATTORNEY: Money. Money is at the heart of this thing. Michael Jackson died because of people's greed. And let there be no mistake about it.
LEMON (voice-over): Attorney Brian Oxman is representing Joe Jackson. His complaint accuses AEG of hiring Dr. Murray and demanding that he medicate Michael and provide him with dangerous medical services.
OXMAN: They hired a doctor. They directed and they controlled the doctor. They promised the doctor medical equipment.
LEMON: The complaint alleges AEG threatened to pull the plug on Jackson's tour unless he followed Dr. Murray's instructions.
(on camera): You claim that during the last weeks of his life, Michael Jackson was not showing up for rehearsals, that he appeared drugged and out of it. Everyone else says oh, he was in the best health.
OXMAN: The autopsy says he had brain swelling, chronic pneumonia, chronic bronchitis. According to the autopsy, he was anemic. This man was not in good shape, and I defy anyone to show me medical proof to the contrary.
LEMON (voice-over): Joe Jackson also claims AEG didn't provide Dr. Murray with medical safeguards he requested.
OXMAN: Conrad Murray was promised cardiopulmonary resuscitation equipment on May 8th of 2009. It is in writing. It is in the e-mail from AEG to Conrad Murray. If that CPR equipment had been there as promised, if the nurse had been there as promised, Michael Jackson wouldn't have died.
LEMON: AEG declined repeated requests by CNN to comment about Joe Jackson's complaint. In an interview with me before the complaint was filed, Randy Phillips, AEG Live CEO says the decision to hire Dr. Murray and pay him $150,000 per month, was solely Michael Jackson's choice.
RANDY PHILLIPS, CEO, AEG LIVE: I said, you know, $150,000 a month on a doctor, you know, making protein shakes for you, whatever, makes no -- just makes no sense. And he shot back with this really -- he stared at me with this very deep stare and he said you don't understand. And his voice got lower, his demeanor changed, and he said you don't understand. OK, my body is what fuels this entire venture and like Barack Obama, I need my own physician with me 24/7, OK? That's not negotiable. And he was so strong about it, that I just backed off and said this is a battle I can't win.
LEMON: But Phillips says AEG never officially employed Dr. Murray because the contract was never signed.
(on camera): To you this contract is null and void or --
PHILLIPS: Yes, to me it never took effect, because it required Michael's signature, and Michael didn't sign the contract.
LEMON: AEG says Dr. Conrad Murray was hired on Michael's insistence, and he would not take no for an answer.
OXMAN: That is simply not true.
LEMON: And the proof of that is --
OXMAN: The proof of it is the e-mails, which go back and forth between Conrad Murray. Every last promise came from AEG, and it's documented in the e-mails.
LEMON: For those people who say that AEG is ultimately responsible for Michael Jackson's death, how do you respond?
PHILLIPS: I'm sad. It makes me sad. You know, sometimes there aren't villains. There are just unfortunate circumstances and accidents. And I feel bad because I think it damages or muddies Michael's memory.
LEMON (voice-over): Joe Jackson has also filed a wrongful death suit against Dr. Murray, alleging reckless disregard for the singer's life. Murray's attorneys claim the cardiologist is not responsible for Michael's death. He's pleaded not guilty.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Dr. Murray, I'm going to ask you the following.
CHERNOFF: There's no way that Dr. Murray would pump Michael Jackson full of a bolus of Propofol sufficient for major surgery and walk out of that room.
What Dr. Murray did for Michael Jackson should not have killed him, and the fact that he died, it was a mystery a year ago. It still is.
LEMON: Jackson's older brother Tito says he is left with more questions than answers.
TITO JACKSON, MICHAEL JACKSON'S BROTHER: Why wasn't he being watched under these types of circumstances? Why did they even take place? Whether he asked for it or not, it's something that doctors are supposed to do or we can to in our homes and just get away with it, and not really be punished for it? As doctors, you've taken an oath to watch over human life. Why did he die under your care?
LEMON: And one year after Michael Jackson's death.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Dr. Murray is a fall guy. This is bull (expletive deleted).
LEMON: One of the most famous families in the world is still searching for answers.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We love you. And we're here for you.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Michael Jackson didn't have to die. Ask anyone in his family, they'll tell you the same thing. Were they worried about him? Of course, they were. But the family members want someone to pay.
Until the verdict is read, until a decision is made, I don't think that the family will really be able to rest.
LEMON: Coming up --
J. JACKSON: When my brother died, the world cried.
LEMON: Mourning a legend.
DON LEMON, CNN SPECIAL INVESTIGATIONS CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): "Bad," the song and the video, not only transformed Michael Jackson's image from soft spoken to tough, but changed the face of pop culture.
T. JACKSON: My brother is the baddest boy that ever held a microphone. That boy was bad. And we'll never have another one.
J. JACKSON: My question is, why does the good die young? The good, the good. Why?
T. JACKSON: Why him? And sometimes there's no answers.
MORET: I think this is a very difficult period. It would be a difficult period for any family. But it's very difficult when you're talking about the death of an icon.
LEMON: An icon. A pop star. A legend. Words that didn't seem big enough to describe the man who eventually became the "King of Pop."
J. JACKSON: When my brother died, the world cried.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: He meant so much to me. He influenced like my whole world.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Michael, thank you for the music you gave us all. The world will miss you. We love you.
LEMON: Then, nearly three weeks after the singer's death, a Hollywood memorial service that rivaled royalty, seen by millions around the world. MUSIC: We are going to see the king.
LEMON: The Andrae Crouch Choir sang as Jackson's brothers carried his casket.
BERRY GORDY, MOTOWN FOUNDER: The king of pop is not big enough for him. He is simply the greatest entertainer that ever lived.
J. JACKSON: You find the life --
LEMON: It was an emotional ceremony.
MARLON JACKSON, MICHAEL JACKSON'S BROTHER: I love you, buddy. I'll miss you.
LEMON: With a heartbreaking ending.
PARIS JACKSON, DAUGHTER: Daddy has been the best father you could ever imagine. And I just wanted to say I love him so much.
J. JACKSON: I'm not going to see him anymore, but I feel him everywhere. I really do. God picks certain people to do certain things. He knew he would be the loudest voice for the world to say, "man in the mirror, heal the world." And when it got to a point where they didn't realize and they didn't want to hear that message anymore, he took him. He took him back. He gave him to us, and he took him back.
T. JACKSON: You know, maybe he's appreciated in another way now. But I know one thing. There will never be another Michael Jackson. Not in my lifetime, or yours, or anybody else's on this earth right now. I miss his laughter and his candor and just the person he was. Just a loving brother. My little brother. That's what I miss. My little brother.
LIONEL RICHIE, ENTERTAINER: Every 25, 30 years, a phenomenon comes along. And we happened to watch them come in, we watched them light up and thrill us. We watched them go away. And now he will be the "King of Pop" forever.
QUINCY JONES, PRODUCER: A combination of high showmanship, sincerity, uniqueness, originality, passion.
USHER, ENTERTAINER: He is everything to music. This man was a universal pop icon. No barrier stood before this man that he didn't challenge that he didn't break down, that he didn't tear down. And that right there, that will never be replaced. And I'm going to miss him. I'm going to miss him so much.
SMOKEY ROBINSON, ENTERTAINER: Michael Jackson was the complete package of an entertainer. I mean, not only could he sing, but he was visually dynamite.
LEMON (on camera): If there was one song that you could -- if someone asked to you sing in tribute to Michael Jackson at a service or whatever, what would you think you'd sing? ROBINSON: How I feel about him, I would probably sing "Never Can Say goodbye."
LEMON: Can you sing a little bit, please.
ROBINSON: Never can say goodbye. No, no, no, no, I never can say goodbye. OK. Because I won't.
MUSIC: Never can say goodbye, no, no, no, no, no. I never can say goodbye.