PREACH IT! The Jackson house o’ crazy: a primer
Exactly what is going on at the Jackson family compound in Encino -- and how much of it involves a stun gun and children with names like Jermajesty and Blanket -- is the stuff of much speculation at this hour.
Given that we don’t live at said compound, and that we don’t even pretend to be friends with the Jackson crowd, we can’t say what precise flavor of crazy is being served over there. But we can offer you a primer on what’s happened so far.
On Tuesday, officials from the L.A. County Department of Children and Family Services paid a visit to the compound, reportedly because Jermaine Jackson’s son, Jaafar, 13, had ordered a stun gun online. According to a statement later released by the Jackson family attorney, Jaafar had indeed gotten his adolescent mitts on the gun, but had managed to test it only “on a piece of paper” before the weapon was confiscated by adults. Meanwhile, TMZ has said that the stun gun actually was used by several children in the household, and that Jackson’s youngest child, Blanket, was an intended target.
A reported total of eight kids live in the compound, including the three children of the late Michael Jackson. The person responsible for their care? Apparently, it’s Katherine Jackson, the 79-year-old family matriarch, and she may not have much of a handle over all that kiddage. (ABC News reports that as many as 14 people live in the household at any given time.) The place may be more chaotic than Jackson mouthpieces are willing to admit; a home video obtained by Radar shows Jaafar smacking down younger brother Jermajesty, 9, pretty harshly -- and no, there are no typos in that sentence.
Oh, one final twist: Jermaine has hinted that the stun gun was intended as a gift for him, from Jaafar.
-- Leslie Gornstein
Photos: Katherine Jackson, left, and Jermaine Jackson, right. Credits: Gabriel Bouys / AFP/Getty Images, left; Ade Johnson / EPA, right.
More Ministry of Gossip dispatches about the King of Pop:Jackson's family members in court for Conrad Murray's 'not guilty' plea; full autopsy report released
For complete Los Angeles Times coverage of MJ's life and death, click here.