Conrad Murray likely to get reduced jail time
Conrad Murray is likely to spend less than a full four-year sentence behind bars and will serve it in County Jail rather than state prison.
Under a new state prison policy, defendants convicted of certain nonviolent crimes will spend their terms in County Jail instead of the overcrowded state prison system. Murray's conviction in the death of Michael Jackson appears to fit that criterion.
L.A. County Dist. Atty. Steve Cooley said that if the County Jail system reaches capacity, Murray could be a candidate for early release.
"There is going to be a tremendous number of people that should be in jail and will not be incarcerated," he told The Times in an interview earlier this month. "This is the kind of story that will play out over and over again."
It remains unclear whether the L.A. County Jail will do more early releases. Officials said they are still planning how to deal with the influx of new prisoners into the jails.
Sheriff Lee Baca declined to comment specifically on what will happen to Murray. But in an interview last month, Baca said the doctor's case shows the decisions his department will probably be forced to make as officials determine which inmates can be released.
"Let's face it, Dr. Murray, for quite a period of time, was out free before he was convicted," Baca said. "The chances of him being a problem behaviorally or a threat to society is nonexistent. He's not probably going to practice medicine again or prescribe medication."
Under the law, involuntary manslaughter as well as crimes such as drug offenses and identity theft no longer require state prison time.
Photo: Dr. Conrad Murray listens as Judge Michael Pastor sentences him to four years behind bars for involuntary manslaughter in the death of Michael Jackson. The image is a screen grab from pool video in Los Angeles. Credit: Pool