Court Hears Testimony From Jackson’s Children In Wrongful Death Suit
LOS ANGELES (CBSLA.com) — Jurors heard testimony from Michael Jackson’s children Wednesday in the wrongful death lawsuit filed against AEG Live.
Michael Jackson’s personal chef testified Wednesday that rehearsals for a planned comeback tour were taking a toll on the singer’s health, though the taped depositions from the singer’s children appeared to call some of her claims into question.
Kai Chase testified for a second day Wednesday in the wrongful death lawsuit filed by the late singer’s mother, Katherine Jackson, against AEG Live.
Under questioning from Jackson attorneys, the personal chef testified that the singer’s health was deteriorating in the month leading up to his death.
Chase testified that though Jackson was healthy in April, by June he appeared so thin and weak that on one occasion she saw his 12-year-old son Prince helping him up the stairs.
But in a deposition recorded in March, AEG lawyers asked Jackson’s son if there was ever a time when Jackson came home from rehearsals and was so tired that he needed help walking up the stairs.
“I wouldn’t be able to either, but no,” Prince Jackson said.
Chase also testified that the children’s nanny, Grace Rwaramba, was like a mother to the singer’s children, and that the nanny was among the people 15-year-old Paris Jackson had turned to in recent weeks.
But AEG attorneys later showed an excerpt of Paris Jackson’s deposition in which she said her father did not like the nanny, who was fired two months before his death.
“My dad didn’t like her so he tried to, like, keep her away from us,” Paris is recorded as saying.
Jackson also alleged Rwaramba once called a hotel where Jackson was staying, claimed to be his wife, and ultimately gained entry to Jackson’s room.
“They’d let her in and he’d wake up, and she’d be, like, in his bed,” Jackson said on tape.
On Tuesday, Chase testified that Paris Jackson was “devastated and lost” following her father’s death. She was hospitalized for an apparent suicide attempt June 5.
Both children are listed as potential witnesses in the suit, though it is unknown if either side plans to call them to testify in person.
Katherine Jackson’s suit against AEG Live alleges the entertainment conglomerate negligently hired, supervised and retained Dr. Conrad Murray as the personal physician for her pop superstar son.
Jackson died of acute propofol intoxication while under Murray’s care in June 2009.