No Ruling After Jackson's Autopsy Investigators are trying to learn more about the circumstances surrounding the death of the pop music legend. An autopsy performed Friday was inconclusive, and more tests were ordered. Jackson has a history of addiction to painkillers.
NPR logo

No Ruling After Jackson's Autopsy

  • Download
  • <iframe src="" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript
No Ruling After Jackson's Autopsy

No Ruling After Jackson's Autopsy

  • Download
  • <iframe src="" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript


From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Melissa Block.

Michael Jackson's death remains a mystery. Los Angeles police are hoping the singer's personal physician might be able to provide some answers, but so far, they have not been able to locate him. Today, a close friend of Michael Jackson's raised questions about the pop star's use of prescription drugs. Meanwhile, as NPR's Carrie Kahn reports, fans around the world are mourning his death.

CARRIE KAHN: Dozens of fans surrounded Michael Jackson's star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame today as a giant floral wreath was placed by the pop singer's name.

Unidentified Group: (Singing) Always in my heart, you are not alone.

KAHN: Fan Tikiesha Allen, wearing a crisp white dress shirt, black fedora and one glove, sang Jackson's ballad "You Are Not Alone," as others in the crowd joined in. She said Jackson has been the most influential man in music history.

Ms. TIKIESHA ALLEN: From his songs to the moves to the look - I mean, you know, it's what it is. You can't deny legends, and this man was a legend.

KAHN: While fans around the world mourn the loss of the pop icon, police continue their investigation into the circumstances of Jackson's sudden death. Today, the city released the 911 call made from inside Jackson's rented mansion in the posh Holmby Hills L.A. neighborhood.

Unidentified Man #1: I'm paramedic 33. What is (unintelligible) emergency?

Unidentified Man #2: Yes, sir, I need to - I need an ambulance as soon as possible, sir.

KAHN: The unidentified caller urged paramedics to hurry to Jackson's home.

Unidentified Man #2: He's not breathing, and we need to - we're trying to pump him, but he's not…

Unidentified Man #1: Okay. Okay. How old is he?

Unidentified Man #2: He's 50 years old, sir.

Unidentified Man #1: Fifty? Okay.

KAHN: The operator was beginning to instruct the caller how to do CPR, but was told there was a physician in the home already attempting to resuscitate Jackson.

Unidentified Man #2: But he's not responding to anything, to no - no. He's not responding to the CPR or anything.

Unidentified Man #1: Oh, okay. Well, we're on our way there. If your guy's doing CPR and you're instructed by a doctor, he has a higher authority than me, and he's there on scene.

KAHN: Now, police want to talk to Jackson's physician, but they've been unable to locate him. He was reportedly living with Jackson in the singer's rented mansion. Police emphasize that he is not a suspect, but last night they impounded his car and hauled it away from Jackson's home. LAPD Detective Gus Villanueva says police are looking for evidence.

Detective GUS VILLANUEVA (Los Angeles Police Department): Michael Jackson's personal physician's car was impounded because we've not been able to interview him yet, and the car might contain medication or other evidence that could assist the coroner in determining the cause of death.

KAHN: LAPD's Robbery Homicide Division was put in charge of the Jackson investigation, but Detective Gregg Strenk warned reporters not to read anything into that.

Detective GREGG STRENK (Los Angeles Police Department): The Los Angeles Police Department handles death investigations every day. Robbery Homicide was assigned to this because of the high-profile nature of it.

KAHN: Jackson has a history of addiction to pain killers. And today, his longtime friend and attorney Brian Oxman said he's worried about the large amount of drugs at Jackson's disposal. Oxman says in 2007, Jackson was sued by a local pharmacist for prescription bills totaling more than $100,000.

Mr. BRIAN OXMAN (Attorney): It's pretty hard to spend $100,000 in a pharmacy in 13 months. He had - this was one of his experiences and one of the things that was a matter of public record. I think most people were aware of that fact.

KAHN: Oxman says he repeatedly warned the family that Jackson's drug use was dangerous and could be deadly.

Mr. OXMAN: I told the family that if Michael wound up dead, I would not be silent. I would not simply sit by and say nothing, that I would raise an alarm. And I think that Michael needed better care than what I think he's received.

KAHN: It may be weeks before the coroner's toxicology report is final.

This morning on CBS, singer Liza Minnelli said that she feared, quote, "all hell will break loose" once the results are in, and said she thanks God that we are celebrating Jackson now.

That was clearly the mood back on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, where fans were surrounding Jackson's star.

Mr. DOMINIC MCKINNIE: I didn't really think Jackson could die. I thought he was invincible. I can't believe it. I really can't. I have no words for it.

KAHN: Dominic Mckinnie says Jackson taught him how to dance, and he'll always love him for that.

Carrie Kahn, NPR News.

Copyright © 2009 NPR. All rights reserved. Visit our website terms of use and permissions pages at for further information.

NPR transcripts are created on a rush deadline by Verb8tm, Inc., an NPR contractor, and produced using a proprietary transcription process developed with NPR. This text may not be in its final form and may be updated or revised in the future. Accuracy and availability may vary. The authoritative record of NPR’s programming is the audio record.