US & Canada

Michael Jackson doctor trial jury to see death photos

Dr Conrad Murray in a February 2010 file photo
Lawyers for Dr Murray, shown in 2010, have suggested Jackson gave himself the lethal dose

Autopsy room images of late pop legend Michael Jackson can be shown to jurors at the trial of the doctor accused of causing his death, a judge has ruled.

Los Angeles Judge Michael Pastor sided with prosecutors who said the photos would show the star was healthy before he died in June 2009 of an overdose of a powerful surgical anaesthetic.

Dr Conrad Murray has pleaded not guilty to involuntary manslaughter.

He had been treating the singer for insomnia.

In one image to be shown to the jury, the singer's dead body is seen laid out on a coroner's examination table in a hospital gown. In another he is naked but with parts of his body obscured.

"Although they are tragic, they are not gruesome or gory," said Deputy District Attorney David Walgren.

Concert film

Dr Murray's defence lawyers had objected, saying the photographs would enflame jurors' passions.

In pre-trial testimony, jurors heard from an emergency medical worker who had attended the scene and said the singer looked like a hospice patient.

Judge Pastor of the Los Angeles superior court also agreed to allow carefully redacted segments of Jackson's concert film This Is It, filmed just before his death, which prosecutors say illustrate his mental and physical wellbeing.

Prosecutors say Dr Murray gave him a lethal dose of propofol - a powerful anaesthetic typically used in a clinical setting - and then failed to provide proper care.

Lawyers for Dr Murray have suggested in recent months that the singer gave himself the lethal dose.

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