The process of selecting jurors in Michael Jackson wrongful death trial began on Tuesday, April 2. The first group of thirty five potential jurors was brought into courtroom with Judge Yvette M. Palazuelos warning that the trial could last around two or three months.
The candidates of juries were given a questionnaire each to fill out to see who could take that much time from their personal and work lives. LA Times reports that a second wave of 35 qualified people was set to arrive later in the afternoon for the same selection process.
In the next several days, there are going to be groups of potential jurors coming every day to be given the same questionnaire until an estimated of 80 to 100 people is chosen. For the final selection, 12 jurors and five alternates will be picked to help decide the case.
There is a limited space for 10 reporters in the courtroom with more than 60 news organizations from around the globe including Japan, France Germany and Australia asking for seats to cover the trial when the Jacksons face off AEG Live, says court spokeswoman Pat Kelly.
TV broadcasters CNN and NBC ask to be allowed to do broadcast the wrongful death trial live. Lawyers for the Jackson family support the idea of live coverage, but attorneys for the giant concert promoter object to it. The judge hasn't made any decision on the matter just yet.
Katherine and Michael's children Paris, Prince and Blanket filed a lawsuit against AEG Live in September 2010. The family sued the promoter for a reported $40 billion over the hiring of Dr. Conrad Murray who was convicted of involuntary manslaughter in the King of Pop's untimely death.
The plaintiffs accused AEG of negligently hiring and supervising Murray when he served to care for MJ's health during the preparation of "This Is It" concert series. They additionally believed the company was responsible for the doctor's conduct and breached its duty to properly care for the late star.
The judge dismissed all claims except for one count about the potential negligence in AEG Live's part in hiring Murray. The family claimed AEG failed to do a proper background check on Murray, saying the disgraced doctor had debt problems that could create a serious conflict between his duty to treat the singer safely and his own financial issues.
AEG called the $40 billion number presented by their opponent absurd, saying Michael's career was already fading. They previously argued that they did not hire Murray and contended that Michael already had problems with prescription drugs before they signed a deal to work together for "This Is It". They also insisted they could not have foreseen Murray posed a danger to the singer.
In the upcoming trial where Katherine, Michael's kids and Murray are all on the witness list, the defendants are allowed by judge to revisit Michael's dark past in the sex abuse case, where MJ was acquitted on all counts, as it might be relevant to the late singer's history of drug abuse and despondency.
MJ died from an anesthetic overdose before the gig was kicked off and before Murray could finalize his contract that would earn him $150,000 a month.