Why Did Prosecutors Abandon Initial Charges Filed Dec 2003? – MJEOL Bullet #229 Another strange issue in a chain of incredulous allegations in the Michael Jackson “case” concerns the various stories being told by the accusing family. As you remember, prosecutors filed one set of charges against Jackson in December 2003, then came out of the indictment process with an entirely different case: different charges, different counts, and a different timeline. This change was highlighted by defense attorneys in various court documents (docs). Redacted docs released November 24 2004 state that prosecutors filed charges on December 18 2003 charging Jackson with 7 counts of lewd acts and 2 counts of administering intoxicants. Besides denying the charges, Jackson’s attorneys say that this initial complaint was based on interviews from the accuser’s mother, the accuser and his brother. They say psychologist Stan Katz—who may be in serious trouble concerning his role in this “case” and his involvement with Bradley Miller—interviewed the accusing family more than seven (7) times. Katz also detailed to Santa Barbara authorities what he was told by the accusing family. They also reveal that law enforcement officials interviewed the accusing family more than two dozen times. All of this is what the December 18 2003 charging complaint was based on. From the court docs:

The complaint was based on more than seven (7) interviews conducted with the complaining witnesses by Psychologist Stanley Katz. Stanley Katz detailed the alleged conduct that formed the basis of the complaint, and the complaint mirrored his interviews and reports to law enforcement. In addition, law enforcement conducted more than two (2) dozen interviews with the complaining witnesses, and more than a hundred separate interviews with other witnesses. (see Memorandum in Support of Motion for Mental Examination pg 10)

But prosecutors soon discarded the charges based on the family’s initial set of allegations and sought a grand jury indictment. Out of that one-sided process came an entirely different case. A conspiracy charge came out of nowhere. Jackson was never charged with conspiracy in the initial Dec 2003 charges. The number of lewd acts dropped from 7 to 4. I guess those other 3 times were just made up, huh? The number of intoxicant charges rose from 2 to 4. Did they forget they were drunk an extra two times or was it thrown in for good measure? And the timeline of alleged abuse changed from starting near the beginning of February 2003 to starring near the end of February 2003. I guess the accuser missed the start of the allegedly ‘traumatic event’ by two weeks. Jeez. Why the sudden and drastic changes? Make no mistake about it, these aren’t little changes or small refinements, especially given what the public has found out about the family’s activities during the time they now claim to have been “held” at Neverland. These aren’t little children who have no strong concept of time here. Also, keep in mind that at the time of the prosecution’s timeline, there were at least two on-going independent investigations. Also remember prosecutors are claiming an alleged conspiracy started first, then alleged molestation, then the alleged conspiracy continued. According to them, the family was kidnapped specifically so Jackson could molest the accuser. Besides being illogical, it is simply another version of events that have emerged during the course of this “case”. The defense notes this change in their Memorandum in Support of Motion for Mental Examination dated Nov 12 2004. They say:

Somewhere, the perception of the facts in this case was significantly altered, and the Indictment no longer followed the details and chronology recounted by Psychologist Katz. …In view of repeated interviews and witness statements, the change in facts, counts, and dates has created an irreconcilable inconsistency with no explanation. (pg 10)

The defense also highlights what a number of legal analysts and lawyers questioned at the time concerning the “lewd acts” alleged. At first, they were said to have begun Feb 7 2003 according to the initial charges. Again, this Feb 7 date was based on more than two dozen interviews with the family and more than 7 interviews with psychologist Stan Katz. However, these alleged “lewd acts” miraculously jumped to Feb 20, near the end of the month. For the record, the Santa Barbara sheriff’s department reportedly began what ended up to be a 2-month long investigation into this allegation on Feb 16 2003 sparked by a complaint from Carole Lieberman. Yeah, her. The Los Angeles Department of Children & Family Services (DCFS) investigation was sparked by a complaint from a teacher. That DCFS investigation found the allegations to be “unfounded” (see DCFS memo). The family exonerated Jackson of these allegations being made by so-called “concerned citizens” based on nothing but the suspicion of these “concerned citizens”. Further, it seems rather odd that Jackson and/or his “people” would kidnap a family, then let them be interviewed by a state agency numerous times. A satisfactory explanation of these events has not been forthcoming. In their court documents, the defense points out the prosecution-alleged “conspiracy” began at the beginning of February 2003 before any alleged acts of molestation. They say:

But the Indictment now says that all but the new conspiracy charges occurred between February 20 and March 12 2003. Now it is a conspiracy starting February 7, but no lewd act until February 20. This was not just a narrowing of the time period, but it was also a lengthening of the time period. Suddenly, something happened on March 12 that was not included in the [original] Complaint. (pg 10-11)

What is with those changing allegations? It could be because of the numerous investigations, sworn statements, audio and video tapes of the accusing family right during the prosecution’s ridiculous timeline. For example, if the accusing family is caught on tape exonerating Jackson on Feb 16 2003, they certainly can’t say anything untoward (kidnapping, abduction, etc) occurred before that time right? Right?? That hasn’t stopped them from trying. It was revealed during previous hearing that Mark Geragos’s private investigator tape recorded an interview with the accusing family at the stepfather’s residence reportedly February 16 2003. One, it is beyond odd that they would be held hostage at Neverland, but Miller had to go to the stepfather’s residence to talk to them and get their comments on tape. What? Were they only kidnapped on certain days of the week? Two, they repeatedly denied any untoward activity without anyone there to intimidate them, and with Maj. Jay Jackson right there with them. Was Jay Jackson conspired against too? Was the army major abducted and kidnapped too?? Nope. Three, the accusing family is now claiming—after the fact—that they were threatened/abducted/kidnapped/whatever before they gave that interview and before they gave interviews to the DCFS. What’s more, neither Jackson nor the prosecution-alleged “co-conspirators” were charged with the actual crimes; just conspiracy to commit the alleged crimes. Huh? According to the defense, the mother allegedly claims she was “forced” to do the interview with the DCFS on February 20 2003 saying “wonderful things” about Jackson. She claims she was brought to a house of someone whose name was redacted, and “forced” to say “wonderful things” about Jackson on February 23 2003 (pg 12). A number of pages are redacted from the documents. But there are notations in the midst of the blacked out lines stating “testified on September 6 2001” (pg 17). There are also mentions of Psychologist Stan Katz throughout the redacted docs. There was also the statement “Other Expert Opinion was Based on the Psychologist’s Interviews.” So it seems as if there were other opinions of other people based on what Katz said, and what the accusing family initially told Katz. What these people told Katz is a major issue for another reason as well: the defense should be able to cross-examine Katz and his analysis of the accusing family’s story or stories as it were. The defense makes the point that there can be no effective cross-examination unless they can independently check Katz’s conclusions:

No expert can be effectively cross-examined where only that expert has access to the subject matter and everyone else is precluded from checking the expert’s observations. A defendant has the right to cross-examine an expert witness on all aspects of the opinion rendered regarding the psychological state of a person that expert has examined. …The right to cross examination of an expert who has rendered an opinion on the mental states of a witness extends to all records, things, and the subject matter of the expert’s evaluation. (pg 31-32)

Should the defense have a chance to adequately cross-examine the conclusions made by Katz from the original story the accusing family told him? Of course, say most case observers. Apparently someone higher than Judge Melville will have to step in and allow the defense access to these records and psychological tests because the judge isn’t allowing it…for now. Remember, there was a psychologist allowed to talk to the accusing family during the JC Penneys lawsuit. Maybe his conclusions of the family is a reason why the prosecution and the family are fighting like hell to keep a 3rd-party from talking to the accusing family If this case makes it to trial, the family will definitely have to explain why—just as in the JC Penneys lawsuit—all of them changed their story over the course of time. The prosecution would have to explain why they abandoned the initial December 2003 charged filed against Jackson. Some observers speculate that after prosecutors filed initial charges, they may have gotten a whiff of how much they were in trouble with subsequent reports about the DCFS investigation conclusion (and who knows who else was investigating), the sworn statements the family signed, and the numerous video and audio interviews they reportedly did at the same time they now claim to had been…well you know what they claim. These overlapping investigations coupled with world attention could have come to the prosecution’s full attention. Hence, they ran to a grand jury for an indictment and changed the entire “case”. Whatever the reason, it may yet be discovered by the defense…if it hasn’t already. Stay tuned. -MJEOL

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