LOS ANGELES — A lawyer for Michael Jackson’s personal physician said Sunday that reports that the doctor injected the pop star with a powerful painkiller before his death were “absolutely false.”
“There was no Demerol. No OxyContin,” said Edward Chernoff, the attorney for Dr. Conrad Murray.
People close to Michael Jackson have said since his death that they were concerned about his use of painkillers. Los Angeles County medical examiners completed their autopsy Friday and said Jackson had taken unspecified prescription medication.
The lawyer, who was present Saturday for Murray’s three-hour interview with Los Angeles Police Department detectives, said Jackson was already unconscious when the doctor “fortuitously” entered the bedroom of the performer’s Holmby Hills mansion.
The 50-year-old entertainer “wasn’t breathing. He checked for a pulse. There was a weak pulse in his femoral artery. He started administering CPR,” said Chernoff, a Houston criminal defense attorney.
The lawyer’s claim was consistent with the account of a source close to the investigation who told the Los Angeles Times that the lengthy interview with the doctor turned up “no smoking gun.”
Murray had not “furnished or prescribed” Jackson with Demerol, the lawyer said.
Chernoff said any drugs the doctor gave Jackson were prescribed in response to a specific complaint from the entertainer.
“Dr. Murray has never prescribed nor administered Demerol to Michael Jackson,” Chernoff said. “Not ever. Not that day. … Not Oxycontin (either) for that matter.”
He described Murray as stunned by Jackson’s death.
“He was the one who suggested the autopsy to the family while they were still in the hospital. He didn’t understand why Michael Jackson had died,” he said.
Jackson’s family requested a private autopsy in part because of questions about Murray, the Rev. Jesse Jackson said Saturday.