Judge Tentatively Rules Against New Jackson Trial

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  • LOS ANGELES (AP) — A judge issued a tentative ruling Friday against granting a new trial in a negligence case filed by the mother of Michael Jackson claiming a concert promoter was financially liable for the singer’s death.

    Superior Court Judge Yvette Palazuelos did not immediately finalize the ruling after hearing more than two hours of arguments from lawyers.

    A jury in October rejected Katherine Jackson‘s lawsuit claiming AEG Live LLC negligently hired the doctor convicted of giving her son an overdose of anesthetic in 2009.

    Her lawyers argued the verdict form didn’t allow jurors to fully consider evidence in the case. Lawyers for AEG Live countered that there was no basis for a new trial.

    AEG Live attorney Jessica Stebbins Bina told the judge it was actually Katherine Jackson’s lawyers who included the disputed language in drafts of the verdict form and instructions.

    Jackson family attorney Deborah Chang, however, said the question that brought jurors to end the case couldn’t have been corrected and should have been excluded from the form.

    Palazuelos did not indicate when she would finalize her ruling. If she stands by it, Katherine Jackson’s attorneys could pursue an appeal with a higher state court.

    Jurors heard more than five months of evidence in the lawsuit trial.

    Katherine Jackson sued AEG Live on behalf of herself and her son’s three children, accusing the concert promoter of hiring Dr. Conrad Murray and creating a conflict of interest in his care of the pop superstar.

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