Conrad Murray will most likely serve two years in a county jail for his role in Michael Jackson’s death. Superior Court Judge Michael Pastor on Tuesday sentenced Murray to four years in state prison, although he will likely serve half of that in a county jail due to overcrowding.
Prosecutors David Walgren and Deborah Brazil appeared at peace with the sentence on the “Today” show, says Sarah Anne Hughes of Celebritology:
When asked if he was disappointed that the doctor may only serve two years, Walgren said Murray “certainly deserves the full weight of the punishment, and he certainly deserves the full four years.” He added that it was the sheriff who determined how much time Murray actually serves.
Murray’s interview with and participation in the documentary, “Michael Jackson and the Doctor: A Fatal Friendship,” were cited several times during sentencing by Judge Pastor, which Murray is no doubt regretting, says Lisa de Moraes of The TV Column:
Shot before the conviction, the docu shows Murray and his team preparing his defense over two years. In “Michael Jackson,” Murray says, “I don’t feel guilty because I did not do anything wrong.”
Which just goes to show you — Superior Court Judge Michael Pastor said Tuesday, shortly before unveiling Murray’s sentence — that the doctor has no sense of remorse in Jackson’s death.
Pastor cited “the long-standing failure of character on the part of Dr. Murray to serve his patient” in his decision. The judge added: “I can’t say that my opinion changed after I became aware of the production involving Dr. Murray after the jury verdict in this case.”
The recording of Michael Jackson’s slurred voice found on Murray’s cell phone also helped convince the judge to sentence Murray to the maximum four years, the Associated Press reports:
The four-minute recording was one of the blockbuster revelations of Dr. Conrad Murray’s involuntary manslaughter trial, a previously unknown piece of evidence that revealed an impaired Jackson describing his ambitions and aspirations as his personal physician listened.
Despite the dramatic trial and the judge’s sharp reprimand of Murray’s actions, medical ethics and legal experts are say the culture of celebrity medicine is not likely to change on a significant level, says the Associated Press:
There are doctors who will apply the same standard of care to their high-profile patients as the non-famous. Those starstruck will be more likely to cave to patients’ demands, overlook their bad habits and operate out of bounds.
“These doctors are ego-crazed and money dependent,” said Dr. Steven Miles of the Center for Bioethics at the University of Minnesota Medical School.
Murray was also ordered to pay restitution to the Jackson family. The amount will be decided at a future court date.
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