LOS ANGELES — Michael Jackson’s personal physician pleaded not guilty to involuntary manslaughter Monday in the pop star’s death last year.
About two hours after prosecutors filed the single felony count, the Dr. Conrad Murray arrived in court to enter his plea. Superior Court Judge Keith Schwartz set bail at $75,000, three times more than most people charged with involuntary manslaughter face, which Murray paid.
State officials said they plan to ask the court to suspend Murray’s license while he’s free on bail. Murray could face up to four years in prison if convicted.
According to a five-page criminal complaint, Murray “did unlawfully, and without malice, kill Michael Joseph Jackson” by acting “without due caution and circumspection.”
The complaint contains no details on Jackson’s death but authorities have said the singer died after Murray administered a powerful general anesthetic and other drugs to help Jackson rest.
Officials say the singer died after Murray on June 25 administered the propofol and two other sedatives to get Jackson, a chronic insomniac, to sleep.
Propofol is only supposed to be administered by an anesthesia professional in a medical setting because it depresses breathing and heart rate while lowering blood pressure.
After reviewing toxicology findings, the coroner ruled Jackson’s death a homicide caused by acute intoxication of propofol, with other sedatives a contributing factor.