Conrad Murray trial: Colorful crowd awaits verdict at courthouse
More than 100 people have gathered outside the Los Angeles County courthouse, eagerly awaiting the verdict to be read in the Conrad Murray trial.
Michael Jackson's parents, Joe and Katherine, and his brother Jermaine Jackson arrived about 12 p.m. to learn whether the jury found that the pop star's personal physician is responsible in his death.
The scene was chaotic, with hordes of media squeezing into the gathering crowd. One person in a Mercedes sports car drove by and held up a license plate that said "Love4MJ," prompting screams and cheers from Jackson fans. A man dressed as a cross between Uncle Sam and Elvis Presley yelled "This is it for Conrad Murray!" in reference to Jackson's ill-fated concert comeback tour.
Deputies were beginning to separate the crowd into two camps: Jackson fans and Murray supporters.
Myra Julliette, 32, traveled from Copenhagen, Denmark, to monitor the trial.
"This is not entertainment, not a circus, not a spectacle," she said. "This is real life. Michael was a real person."
Julliette said she believes Murray is "slam-dunk guilty" and if the jury doesn't reach the same conclusion, "it will be a huge injustice."
"I still hurt that Michael is not here and it's going to hurt me for the rest of my life that Michael is not here," she said.
Beatrice Sakhrian held up a sign: "Turn away from addiction."
She said she goes to church and golfs with Murray. She believes the doctor has "weathered the storm."
"He loved Michael Jackson and Michael Jackson loved him," she said. "I've said from the beginning he was an innocent man."
-- Rick Rojas at Los Angeles County Superior Court
Photo: Michael Jackson supporter Anthony Solis holds a "guilty" sign on the sidewalk in front of the Clara Shortridge Foltz Criminal Justice Center, where jurors are deliberating the involuntary manslaughter charge against Dr. Conrad Murray. Credit: Mark Boster / Los Angeles Times