Reporting Maggie Newland
MIAMI (CBS4) – It took less than nine hours for a jury to convict Dr. Conrad Murray of involuntary manslaughter in the death of singer Michael Jackson.
The verdict brought a gasp inside the courtroom and an eruption of cheers outside.
Here in South Florida we watched the verdict with Frank Rubino, a federal white collar criminal defense attorney.
“I was not the least bit surprised,” Rubino said about the verdict, explaining the involuntary manslaughter charge did not require the prosecution to prove Murray meant to harm Michael Jackson.
“All they had to prove is that he was negligent, his negligence was gross not just minor negligence, and that negligence caused the death of Michael Jackson,” he added.
Prosecutors argued Murray gave Jackson the powerful anesthetic Propofol, failed to properly monitor him, and didn’t immediately call 9-1-1 the day he died.
Rubino says the prosecution was successful in proving its case.
“He administered a drug to him which is only given in an operating room,” Rubino said. “I mean, that’s just ludicrous.”
Rubino said Jackson’s fame did play a role in the case.
“It’s got the California star quality of this. This is the man who, quote, killed Michael Jackson and I think that carried a lot of stigma into the trial.”
Rubino thought the guilty verdict would’ve been the same if the case did not involve a celebrity. “I think his negligence was that gross,” Rubino said.
In court, the judge told Dr.Murray his actions posed a risk to public safety and denied bail. Murray was handcuffed and led out of the courtroom.
His sentencing is set for November 29th and he could serve four years in prison.