The weekend saw a host of news reports that make us all wonder how we didn’t see Michael Jackson’s death coming. But no matter how many tales of the King of Pop’s fragility there are, we still can’t believe he’s gone. It’s impossible to sort through all the speculation, but here are the depressing findings so far:
— First, the autopsy: Los Angeles County medical examiners found Jackson had taken unspecified prescription medication at the time of his death. The coroner’s office has also dispelled reports from The Sun that Jackson’s emancipated body weighed 112 pounds and was “riddled with needle marks and scars.” The story alleged that his stomach was empty besides some partially dissolved pills and that Jackson was bald when he died. Yeah, we don’t like thinking about it either. It may take weeks to for examiners to determine the exact cause of death. Til then, all we have is Liza Minnelli’s speculation.
— Police interviewed Jackson’s doctor, Conrad Murray, 56, on Saturday. Murray was with the pop star when he died. He told investigators Jackson was unconscious but had a faint pulse when he found him on his bed, and denied giving Jackson prescribed drugs that contributed to his death, including the painkiller Demerol, which many news outlets reported Jackson was injected with shortly before he stopped breathing. Michael’s father, Joe Jackson, is skeptical, telling a California TV station yesterday, “Michael was dead before he left the
house. I’m suspecting foul play somewhere.”
–Jackson’s mother, Katherine, has received temporary guardianship of Jackson’s three children and is seeking control of the singer’s estate.
–The Daily Mail reports Michael left the rights to 200 unpublished songs
to his children, Prince, 12, Paris, 11, and Prince Michael Jackson II,
7, hopefully ensuring the kids live comfortable lives despite the massive debt the singer left behind.
–According to Debbie Rowe, the mother of the three children and Jackson’s ex-wife, Michael is not the father of the children.
From her farm, Rowe offered a gross analogy: “I was just the vessel. It
wasn’t Michael’s sperm. Just like I stick the sperm up my horse, this
is what they did to me. I was his thoroughbred.” She said she will not
fight for custody of Prince Michael or Paris, “I know I will never see
them again. I was never cut out to be a mother – I was no good,” she
said. “I don’t want these children in my life.” Rowe is not the mother
of Prince Michael Jackson II.
–Jackson family members turned up at the BET Awards,
which was completely revamped to celebrate the pop star. Joe Jackson,
dressed in black, watched from his seat as Janet Jackson told the
crowd, “To you, Michael is an icon, to us, Michael is family and he
will forever live in all of our hearts.”
–As far as funeral arrangements, nothing yet. Al Sharpton, acting as one of many family spokesman, said the family wants to hold memorials in several cities worldwide. A memorial service is planned for Tuesday at the Apollo Theater.