Spotty Memory of Prosecution Witness Undermines Credibility? – MJEOL Bullet #256 Pundit-touted Jason Francia turns from alleged “powerful witness” to the king of forgetfulness under cross-examination APRIL 6 2005 — It’s always nice to be able to read the court transcripts instead of only relying on reports from cable news shows about what happens in court. The testimony of Jason Francia is a perfect example of how pundits can create “powerful” testimony and ignore serious problems revealed under cross-examination. Tuesday (April 5 2005), you could have cast the role of “Chicken Little” with Dan Abrams over at MSNBC. His repeated cries of “powerful testimony” and wide-eyed claims of the witness “holding up under cross examination” was enough to make some observers watching to comment: “He should calm down a little. This is a trial, not a football game”. The ridiculousness going on over at Court TV goes without saying. No surprise there. The heralding of his testimony is made all the more questionable once one actually reads the transcript of what ‘Mr. I Don’t Know’ had to say when being questioned by the defense. And later, under cross-examination of his mother, the defense brought out that Jackson was on a World tour from 1987-1989 – frequently out of the country — during the time when J. Francia has claimed some of his alleged “molestation” occurred in Los Angeles. Oops! But regardless of what one wants to say concerning the testimony of Jason Francia, it was fraught with a number of stunning things that the defense delved into under cross-examination. And what came off as evasiveness didn’t help the prosecution. Indeed, every witness has two faces. Yesterday (April 5), the media was abuzz with this so-called “credible” testimony from this 24 year old witness, who claimed Jackson fondled him in 1987, 1988 and 1990; with some pundits wondering how Mesereau was going to challenge his story. One of the first things to be hit upon by Mesereau was the fact that J. Francia denied any molestation occurred. Some observers didn’t realize that until it was brought out in open court. Also appearing on that Abrams show was MSNBC Analyst Ron Richards to put some of this alleged “powerful testimony” into context. A point made by Ron Richards was that people, like Abrams — in his “big trouble for the defense” declarations — act as if Jackson’s attorney was suppose to decimate J. Francia on the stand and force him into a Perry-Mason-moment where he breakings down crying, screaming ‘Jackson didn’t do it! I lied!’ That ain’t going to happen. Obviously, this ain’t a Perry Mason TV show. This is a real trial with people who have been trained to stick to what they’ve been saying for years. Abrams tried to deny that, but it was clear–with his zeal in proclaiming “trouble” for the defense–that that’s exactly what he seemed to be expecting, and Richards called him on it. Mesereau did make REAL, substantial ground by getting the accuser to admit that he first repeatedly denied these allegations to police and suggested that it was only after being badgered by them, that he started to make allegations against Jackson. There have been two things a number of people have been talking about since cross-examination: One was the admission from a previous interview J. Francia gave and the other was the extreme memory lapses he seemed to have when being questioned by Mesereau. For clarification purposes, there were at least 3 interviews with J. Francia and Blanca Francia recently in 2004: Oct 18 2004, Nov 19 2004, and apparently Dec 6 2004. J. Francia was asked about previous interviews with police that he’d given: one on Nov 3 1993 and two other interviews given in 1994. There was a fairly conspicuous difference between his clarity when being asked questions by prosecutors, and his total lack of memory when being asked questions by the defense. For example, he was asked about whether he requested that his 2004 interviews not be taped and he couldn’t remember. He also couldn’t remember who all was present and why some of them were there. But the prosecution asked him about events surrounding a threat to file a civil suit against Jackson in 1995, and he remembered with perfect clarity. J. Francia’s old police interviews proved to be fertile ground for the defense. These interviews were recorded and transcribed, and Mesereau read aloud a few things the accuser said back then that caused many to question his testimony. One of the first things that stood out was covered by the Associated Press in an article dated today (April 5 2005) titled “Jackson witness pleads poor memory”. From the court transcript:

Q. Do you remember stating in that interview, “They made me come out with a lot more stuff I didn’t want to say. They kept pushing. I wanted to get up and hit them in the head”? Do you remember that? A. No. Q. Would it refresh your recollection if I show you the transcript of that? A. Probably not. But you can show it to me anyway. MR. MESEREAU: May I approach, Your Honor? THE COURT: Yes. MR. ZONEN: What page, Counsel? MR. MESEREAU: 30. THE WITNESS: Okay. Q. BY MR. MESEREAU: Have you had a chance to look at that page of the transcript? A. I have. Q. Does it refresh your recollection about what you’ve said? A. No, it does not. Q. Do you remember anything you said in that interview at the moment? A. Not really. (4908-4909 (20-15))

They “made him come out with a lot more stuff” that he didn’t want to say? Huh? They “kept pushing” him so much that he wanted to “hit them in the head”?? These are not the words of someone simply trying to hide a molestation. This appears to be a flat-out admission. Many observers who chimed in were completely stunned that this witness would make a statement like that. This also fits with the defense’s theory that these adults were leaning heavily on this kid back in 1993 to make an allegation against Jackson. Fox News’s Trace Gallagher reported April 5 2005 that the jury seemed “stoic” — seemingly indifferent or unaffected by Jason Francia’s testimony. It may have something to do with these prior admissions and his previous denial of molestation. And then comes another incredibly stunning statement, read aloud in court by Mesereau, from J. Francia’s 1994 interview. From the transcript:

Q. In your second interview in 1994, you were asked, “Did you ever have any discussion with Michael Jackson about whether you should tell anybody about the things you described?” Remember that? A. (Shakes head from side to side.) Q. You don’t? Okay. A. No, I don’t. Q. Okay. Do you remember telling the interviewers, when you were asked do you remember anything that he said, you said, “No, I’m working on that”? A. No. … Q. In the second interview — let me rephrase the question. I’ll withdraw it. In the second interview in 1994 – okay? — A. Okay. Q. — that was recorded – all right? – when asked if Mr. Jackson said anything to you about whether you should discuss what happened, do you remember telling the interviewers, “No, but I’m working on that”? A. I do not remember that. Q. Would it refresh your recollection if I show you the transcript? A. No. But — you could bring it over. Q. Well, I can’t unless you’re willing to see if it refreshes your recollection. A. Okay. Bring it over. I’ll give it a shot. I’ll read it just to see if it refreshes my memory. (4941 (11-23|28), 4942 (1-16))

He’s “working on that”? Working on what?? Getting his story straight? Or coming up with a story that police wanted to hear? This is not a standard response to the question he was asked by police in 1994. Someone asks a supposed “victim” if he was ever told not to tell anyone about abuse, the last response would be “No, I’m working on that.” Observers on both sides have really said that it does sound more like he’s trying to tell the police what they expect to hear from him. “Powerful testimony”? Yeah, powerful for the defense, not the prosecution. It appears to throw into doubt everything he’s said on the stand, regardless of how emotional he appeared to be. The questions become, did he make up what he’s saying on the stand? And/Or has he been told he was molested for so long — along with a therapist(s) he’s been seeing after the fact — that he actually believes it? J. Francia’s spotty memory could also cause a few jurors to think twice about his testimony. At one point, reports the Associate Press, Mesereau asked him about whether or not his allegation against Jackson ever resulted in a criminal case. J. Francia’s response was: “I don’t know much. I don’t watch the news.” Seriously, that’s what he reportedly said. It immediately caused even some pro-prosecution observers to make the point that he wouldn’t have to watch the news in order to know if the guy he claims molested him was prosecuted for his allegation. He simply seemed a bit “too forgetful” for some of their tastes. The questioning also got into what was said by police during the first interview in 1993. Initially, as mentioned already, J. Francia denied Jackson touched his genitalia. It really was only after police interviewed — and one in which a sheriff cursed (cussed) Jackson – that J. Francia started to make accusations. Mesereau had no trouble reading what an officer told an under-aged J. Francia during one of his first interviews. From the transcript:

Q. Okay. All right. Now, you admitted that at the beginning of your first interview with sheriffs in ’93, you said that Mr. Jackson had not touched your genital area, right? A. I said that at the very beginning. MR. ZONEN: Objection; asked and answered. THE COURT: Sustained. Q. BY MR. MESEREAU: It was only after you were pushed real hard by the sheriffs that you began to say anything like that, true? MR. ZONEN: Objection; asked and answered. THE COURT: Sustained. Q. BY MR. MESEREAU: And at one point a sheriff actually used a curse word to get you to say something, correct? A. I don’t remember that, but you could show me the thing. Q. Okay. But as you sit here today, you don’t remember, right? A. I don’t remember the four-letter word. Everybody in junior high cussed. Q. How about the word “bullshit”? A. What about it? Q. Do you remember a sheriff telling you that? A. I don’t, but I think I remember listening to it on the tape. Q. Do you remember in that interview one sheriff telling you, “Mr. Jackson is a molester,” and the other saying, “He makes great music, he’s a great guy, bullshit”? Do you remember that? A. I don’t remember that specifically, but I think I remember hearing it on the tape, which was my voice, or his voice. Q. You do remember a sheriff’s voice saying that, right? A. I don’t remember right now of ’93, but I remember listening to the tape. Q. Okay. And a sheriff said that to you, correct? A. I believe so. (4927-4928 (2-28 | 1-13))

Apparently, the sheriffs also complained that Jackson has a lot of money and called him a molester in front of J. Francia in 1993. And still, Francia said Jackson never touched him in his genital area. More from the transcript:

Q. Does it refresh your recollection about what the sheriffs said to you about Mr. Jackson in the interview? A. I don’t remember that specifically, but reading it in the transcript, I remember reading that in the transcript when I read it on Sunday, when I reviewed the tape. Q. And even after sheriffs said to you, “He’s a molester, he’s a great guy, makes great music, bullshit, he has lots of money,” you still said he had never touched your genital area, right? A. I believe so. Probably towards the beginning again. (4928-4929 (26-10))

Remember, this is a very specific questioning. There is no room for “misunderstandings” or the old ridiculous pro-prosecution pundit cop-out that ‘maybe Jackson didn’t think what he was doing was wrong”. Now that’s bull$hit. You have extremely precise questions about whose hand was where….or wasn’t there. And he still said Jackson never touched him there. This isn’t a vague interpretation. He apparently didn’t remember being interviewed in 1994 by Tom Sneddon (4907 (16-22)) . He didn’t remember Lauren Weis from the Los Angeles District Attorney’s office being present during the interview:

Q. Do you remember someone named Lauren Weis from the Los Angeles District Attorney’s Office being there — A. I don’t. I’m really bad at names. Q. I have to complete the question. Thank you. Do you remember someone named Lauren Weis from the Los Angeles District Attorney’s Office being present at that interview? A. No. (4907-4908 (23-3))

The attorney then asked J. Francia a series of questions about who he remembers was present during a 1994 interview:

Q. Do you remember someone named Bill Hodgeman from the Los Angeles District Attorney’s Office being at that interview? A. No. Q. And you don’t remember whether or not Mr. Sneddon was there, right? A. I — correct. Q. Are you saying he wasn’t there, or you just don’t remember? A. I don’t remember whether he was there or not. Q. Do you remember Russ Birchim being there? A. I do not. Q. Do you remember your own lawyer, Terry Cannon, being there? A. I do not. (4908 (4-19))

This wouldn’t be an issue if this was the only thing he didn’t remember. But his memory lapses conveniently kicked in even regarding events that took place Oct, Nov, and Dec 2004. Mesereau asked him about whether or not someone from the San Diego DA’s office, Terry Cannon, was present and whether he was acting as J. Francia’s attorney. From the transcripts:

Q. Okay. How did you meet Attorney Terry Cannon? A. I can’t — I think I met them at Mike Craft’s office. Q. Excuse me, at whose office? A. Mike Craft’s, my counselor. Q. Okay. And does Terry Cannon still represent you? A. I don’t think so, no. Q. Well, you gave an interview with Mr. Zonen in December of 2004, correct? A. Yes. That was the first time I think I met them. Q. And Terry Cannon was present, correct? A. You’re right. Q. And Terry Cannon at that time was working for the District Attorney’s Office in San Diego, correct? A. Correct. Q. But he still came up to act like your lawyer, didn’t he? MR. ZONEN: I’ll object to the expression, “act like your lawyer”; vague. Or argumentative. THE COURT: Well, I guess instead of “like,” it might be “as.” MR. MESEREAU: I’ll rephrase it, Your Honor. Q. Mr. Cannon was present at your interview with Ron Zonen on December 6th, 2004, right? A. Yes, sir. Q. At that interview, he was serving as your lawyer, correct? A. I don’t know. Q. Do you know why he was there? A. I didn’t really know. I was asked by — actually, I didn’t even know how I met you guys. I was asked to be there, I think, and he was there. Q. Okay. Did he give you any legal advice before that meeting? A. Actually, he said, “You don’t have to answer things if you don’t want to,” but I think that was just a — man advice. Q. So he was giving legal advice? A. I don’t know if that’s legal advice or not. Q. Did he discuss with you what you were going to say in that interview? A. No. 4910-4912 (21-28 | 1-28 | 1-10)

Either Cannon was his lawyer or he wasn’t. There’s no “I don’t know” to that. He claimed not to know what Cannon was doing there. Cannon gave J. Francia legal advice by telling him “you don’t have to answer things if you don’t want to.” But J. Francia didn’t want to admit that this was what Cannon did. What also came out during cross-examination is J. Francia requesting that his Dec 2004 interview not be taped. Of course, Francia didn’t remember that either. Again, he can remember what color shorts he was wearing in 1987, but he can’t remember what he said in Dec 2004. From the transcript:

Q. Do you remember when that interview began, you requested that your interview not be tape-recorded? A. I don’t remember that. Q. Would it refresh your recollection if I show you a report on that interview? A. Okay. Sure. MR. MESEREAU: May I approach, Your Honor? THE COURT: Yes. THE WITNESS: Okay. Q. BY MR. MESEREAU: Have you had a chance to look at that report? A. I read the first paragraph. Q. And does it refresh your recollection that you requested that your interview not be tape-recorded? A. It does not, but I probably said that. Q. Okay. You don’t know for sure, though? A. No. (4912-4913 (11-1))

Further during his testimony, Mesereau asks him again about this request that his 2004 interviews not be taped. And, again, he didn’t know why he would have made that request. More from the transcripts:

Q. BY Mr. MESEREAU: Why didn’t you want your interview in December of 2004 with the prosecutors tape recorded? A. I don’t know. Q. You don’t have any idea why you made that request? A. Tape-recording is weird. I don’t know. No, I don’t. (4917-4918 (24-3))

Tape recording is “weird?” Weird how? “What does he mean he doesn’t know”, asked one observer; saying what was on my mind and what turned out to be on a number of other observers’ minds as well. How would he NOT know why he would make a request like that? Did someone tell him to request that? Was he advised by one of the lawyers to request the interview not be recorded? And if so, why would they not want the interview on record? It makes no sense because it’s seemingly evasive. Some suggested that this is what prosecutor Jim Hammer was getting at when he made a comment about J. Francia’s shoddy memory:

Jim Hammer: He’s cross examining [Jason Francia] repeatedly not just about interviews 12 years ago, but about interviews late last year. And about those, the kid continually claims he doesn’t remember things. It’s gonna be hard for the jury to put much weight into his testimony if they think he’s selectively remembering even 5 months ago. (Studio B: Trace Gallagher report (April 5 2005))

But these memory lapses didn’t end there. Remember, he just claimed that he really didn’t know why Cannon was there? Well Mesereau brought out that he, J. Francia, had requested Cannon be there. From the transcript:

Q. Okay. And you had requested that Mr. Cannon be present at the interview, right? A. You’re going to have to show me the paper probably. MR. MESEREAU: May I approach, Your Honor? THE COURT: Yes. THE WITNESS: (Nods head up and down.) Q. BY MR. MESEREAU: Have you had a chance to look at the report? A. I did. Q. Does it refresh your recollection that you wanted Mr. Cannon present? A. It does not refresh my recollection. Q. Let me just try and get this straight. You don’t know why Mr. Cannon was there, correct? A. Correct. Q. You didn’t ask him to be there, right? A. I don’t remember whether I asked for him to be there or not. I probably did, only because he was a friend of mine and he knows more legal stuff than I do. Q. Okay. Did you know he was working for a District Attorney’s Office at the time? A. I believe I did, because we kept in touch — Q. Okay. A. — after I was 18. (4913 (2-27))

So what’s the story here? Either you asked him to come or you didn’t. Either he’s your attorney, or he isn’t. These aren’t difficult questions to answer. Spoken about earlier, another thing J. Francia claims he didn’t know about was whether or not Jackson was charged criminally as a result of anything he alleged in ‘93 and ’94. Some observers call it rather incredulous, regardless of how “protected” he claimed to be. From the transcript:

Q. Incidentally, after your second interview, which you don’t remember a lot about, to your knowledge, no criminal charges were ever filed against Mr. Jackson involving anything you had told anybody, right? A. I don’t know. Q. You still don’t know? A. I — are you talking about ’94, the ’94 interview? Q. Yes. A. Okay. And you’re asking if there was criminal charges pressed against Michael? Q. I’m asking you what you know, okay? You’ve already indicated that after your ’93 interview, no criminal charges were ever filed against Mr. Jackson involving anything you said, right? A. I don’t know much. I don’t watch the news. Q. And — okay. And after your ’94 interview, again, no criminal charges were ever filed against Mr. Jackson involving anything you said, right? A. I don’t know. (4915 (6-26))

He doesn’t know much. He doesn’t watch the news. He doesn’t know if there were criminal charges. Since when in hell does someone have to watch the news to get this information? 13 (14) year old that he was at the time was certainly old enough to know whether or not his allegation had caused someone to be criminally charged with a crime. [i](continued on Page 2)[/i] [pagebreak] [i]Continued…[/i] Mesereau’s point appears to be that the story J. Francia told in 1993 and 1994 simply wasn’t either sufficient or believable enough to warrant a criminal case against Jackson. Remember, before these people started working on him to make allegations against Jackson, he repeatedly denied Jackson had ever touched him inappropriately. There was also more than one lawyer involved in and around J. Francia since at least 1994. Terry Cannon, who has already been mentioned, is from the San Diego DA’s office. Kris Kallman is another attorney. Kallman apparently represented J. Francia during that lawsuit threat in 1995, which resulted in a settlement. Interesting research about Kallman. He is one of the attorneys to which the DA’s office refers alleged victims of molestation, according to his website. More on what Kallman had to say in a future MJEOL Bullet. But the fact remains that this is yet another attorney involved around allegations that were never brought in criminal court for one logical inference that they weren’t credible then. Mesereau asked whether or not J. Francia’s mother, Blanca Francia, went to an attorney after she found out that Jackson settled with the 1993 accuser’s family. J. Francia claimed not to know. Shocker. And that good ole’ selective amnesia just kept kicking in, now at an increasingly inane level. He again couldn’t remember the specifics of the allegations he’s made against Jackson. Mesereau asked Mr. Forgetful about whether or not he told prosecutor Ron Zonen that his alleged “molestation” was preceded by a tickle contest. He couldn’t remember…of course. Even reading a transcript of his previous statement didn’t refresh his memory of things he allegedly said just months ago. From the court transcripts:

Q. Well, actually, in the December interview, you told Prosecutor Zonen that, in all three instances that you described where you claim you were inappropriately touched, every incident was preceded by a tickling contest between you and Mr. Jackson, right? A. I don’t know. Q. Would it refresh your recollection just to show you the report? A. You can show it to me, but I don’t know whether it was the first or the second. (4918 (12-22))

He didn’t remember and reading the transcripts didn’t help him remember either. It was enough to make you tune out. Check out this further exchange between J. Francia and Mesereau:

Q. Does it refresh your recollection about what you told Prosecutor Zonen in that December 6th, 2004, interview? A. It doesn’t — I don’t — it doesn’t help remembering, but — Q. Well, you told him that all three events that you described were preceded by a tickling contest, correct? A. I don’t remember. Q. You and Mr. Jackson were in a contest as to who could tickle the most, correct? A. I just said I don’t remember that. I don’t mean to sound like I’m wasting your time, but this is kind of hard being up here, and — Q. No, please don’t. Just respond to my questions, if you would, please. A. Okay. Sorry. (4919 (2-18))

He also didn’t remember whether his mother was interviewed by Ron Zonen and Gordon Auchincloss either on Nov 19 2004. And he pulled an ‘Arvizo’ – current slang – by claiming he doesn’t talk about this “stuff” with his mother. If you remember, the Arvizo gang all claimed they didn’t talk about this “case” with each other either. Yeah, sure. Mesereau caught him possibly trying to mislead the jury. At first, Francia claimed he didn’t know whether his mother was interviewed on Nov 19 2004. That is, until Mesereau refreshed his memory by revealing that not only should he have known, but that he was actually present at the damn meeting he claimed he didn’t know anything about. From the transcript:

Q. Now, on November 19th, 2004, Prosecutor Zonen and Auchincloss interviewed your mother at the District Attorney’s Office, right? A. I don’t know. Me and my mother don’t talk about that stuff much. Q. Well, you were present, weren’t you? A. Now I remember, yes. Q. Now you remember? A. Yeah. I was present there. Q. You not only were present, but you also requested that that not be tape-recorded, correct? A. Probably. Q. You don’t know? A. I don’t know. Q. Would it refresh your recollection to look at that report? A. No. But bring it on up. MR. MESEREAU: May I approach, Your Honor? THE COURT: No, he said it wouldn’t. Q. BY MR. MESEREAU: You’re not willing to look at it? A. It’s not about me willing. I’m willing to look at it, but it’s not going to help. Q. Well, that was last November you had that interview with your mom and these prosecutors, correct? A. Again, this is all difficult. Q. I know it’s difficult, but you’re saying you don’t remember that interview? A. You just said I met with my mom and I was there, and I didn’t remember until you said that, and then I remembered. (4919-4920 (19-28 | 1-22))

This is what the media is proclaiming to be a “credible” witness? This was the “devastating” and “powerful” testimony touted by some in the mainstream media? Huh? A number of people in print journalism picked up on Francia’s spotty memory like the AP, though. Those who wanted to believe his story, of course, proclaimed him the strongest prosecution witness so far. Others are still scratching their heads because, as one observer wrote “if this is the strongest witness they have, then that’s shameful”. At this interview, too, on Nov 19 2004, both Francia and his mother requested that it not be tape recorded. As mentioned before, J. Francia also requested another interview not be tape-recorded. What is it with these people and their fear of being caught on tape? Of course, Mesereau brought this up, and of course, J. Francia didn’t remember that. From the transcript:

Q. Do you remember you and your mom both requested that the interview not be tape-recorded? A. I do not. Q. Would it refresh your recollection to see what it says in the report about that? A. Bring it over. It — yeah. Bring it over. MR. MESEREAU: May I approach, Your Honor? THE COURT: Yes. Q. BY MR. MESEREAU: Have you had a chance to look at the page of that report? A. Yeah, I read the first paragraph. Q. Does it refresh your recollection about you and your mother both requesting no tape-recording? A. No, it does not. Q. Okay. You don’t remember one way or the other about that? A. Right. (4920-4921 (23-11))

We already found out that he was present at the meeting after first claiming he didn’t remember. Now we find out that he was actually interviewed as well. He asserted he didn’t remember that he was interviewed too, and initially tried to claim he was just there for moral support for his mother. From the transcript:

Q. Okay. Okay. Now, on that particular day, and I’m referring to November 19th, 2004, you were interviewed as well, correct? A. Was this when my mother was present? Q. Yes. A. Okay. Q. Do you remember you were interviewed on that day? A. I think I was just there for my mom. Q. Well, actually, they interviewed your mom first and then they interviewed you second, correct? A. I don’t remember that. Q. Okay. They interviewed you for about an hour, didn’t they? A. They may have. Q. Would it refresh your recollection if I show you the report about that? A. No. Q. You’re not willing to look at it? A. I’ll look at it. I’ll look at it, but no, it probably won’t. Q. You don’t remember an hour interview on November 19th, 2004? A. Again, the issue is it’s all kind of blending in together. (4921-4922 (12-8))

“Bleeding in together”, my ass. How do you first forget being there, then claim you were there for moral support, then forget being interviewed yourself for an hour? In 2004?? Or a better question is how do you forget you were interviewed for an hour in connection with who you claim to be your “molester” as recently as late 2004? I’m getting exasperated just going through his testimony. Jeez. Now, remember this is someone whose memory is vastly improved when the prosecution is questioning him. J. Francia also says he never slept in the same bed with Jackson. From the transcript:

Q. Okay. You did tell the sheriffs in your first interview you had never spent the night with Mr. Jackson, right? A. I never slept in his bed with him. (4930 (18-21))

Ok, so where is this prosecution-alleged “grooming” of having people sleep in his bed with THIS accuser? This is the problem with what will prove to be a ridiculous 1108 law. I don’t think opponents of this 1108 law will have a better example of why this law should be repealed/modified than with this Jackson “case”. After the admission he never slept in Jackson’s bed, that ole’ memory kicked in again. In his March 24 1994 interview with police, he didn’t remember what cartoons he was allegedly watching when he was allegedly being tickle-molested. On the stand he didn’t remember telling police he said he was tickled in his stomach instead of his genital area. But he claims to remember “usually” crying when talking about alleged molestation. And Mesereau asked him about that. From the transcript:

Q. Okay. You were asked to describe what Mr. Jackson did with his hands, and your response was, “He tickled me,” true? A. I don’t know. I was probably crying then. … Q. BY MR. MESEREAU: By the way, if you don’t remember the interview, how do you know you were crying? A. Because I usually cry when we’re talking about the molestation. (4932-4933 (26-1) | (8-12))

He doesn’t remember the interview, doesn’t remember what he said, but he remembers he was crying? Did he throw that in for good measure? J. Francia was then asked if there was talk about whether or not he spoke to anyone in the media about his allegation. He says he talked to some media “guy” once who had a British accent. When asked when this happened, J. Francia said “probably ’92 or ‘93” (4941, line 5). 1992?! Huh? How did 1992 come up? This was before a settlement agreements, before the threat of a lawsuit from the mother, before his mother sold her story to tabloid show Hard Copy, and after the mother was fired in 1991. Under cross-examination, Mesereau also revealed that in 1994, J. Francia indicated he knew another kid sued Jackson for money. And of course J. Francia claimed he didn’t remember saying that either. From the transcript:

Q. Now, in that interview you indicated that you were aware that another boy had sued Mr. Jackson seeking money, right? … 4943 Q. In the second interview that you gave in 1994 – okay? — A. Okay. Q. — you indicated that you were aware that someone else had sued Mr. Jackson for money, correct? A. I don’t remember. Q. Would it refresh your recollection to look at the transcript? A. Probably not. Q. Okay. A. Both of them are really blurry. It was just hard for me at the time. (4943 (3-5 | 10-22))

So, he knew in 1994 that another kid sued Jackson for money because apparently it’s on tape, a transcript of which was referenced by Mesereau in court. He was then asked when he remembers knowing about the 1993 civil suit. He claims he was 16, which would have been in 1996. 1996 is reportedly when his mother, Blanca Francia, received a settlement after threatening to – apparently from Jackson’s standpoint – derail his career again with a lawsuit. From the transcript:

Q. Looking back, when is the first time you recall you knew someone else had sued Mr. Jackson looking for money? A. Probably 16. Q. Excuse me? A. I was probably 16. Because that’s when money started being an issue for me. (4943-4944 (25-3))

Yeah, I’m sure money started being an issue for him, probably at the behest of his mother. J. Francia was asked again about a Nov 19 2004 interview. During that interview, Terry Cannon, again from the San Diego DA’s office, didn’t want a defense investigator present. From the transcript:

Q. Okay. Now, in your last interview with Prosecutor Zonen – and I’m talking about an interview on November 19th, 2004, okay? – Mr. Cannon was present, right? A. I don’t know. Q. Do you recall Mr. Cannon not wanting a defense investigator present? A. No, I don’t recall. Q. Did you know anything about that? A. No. (4944 (4-13))

Why would Cannon, who apparently doesn’t represent J. Francia (…that he can remember….), not want a defense investigator present? What was there to hide? Uh! I can’t take anymore of this ‘I don’t remember’ mess. He knows what to say and how to say it – even to get ‘chocked up when being questioned by prosecutors. But as damn near every prosecution witness making an allegation, he transforms into something completely different under cross-examination. Stay tuned. -MJEOL

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