2003 turned out to not be Jackson's year as in November his Neverland Ranch
was extensively searched by police who subsequently arrested him. It took until
2005 however for Jackson to appear in court.
Jackson, now 46, was charged with molesting a 13-year-old cancer patient. The "King
of Pop" was also accused of giving the boy alcohol and conspiring to keep
the boy and his family at Jackson's Neverland ranch near Santa Maria. Michael,
of course, denied these charges stating "I have spent my entire life helping
millions of children across the world. I would never harm a child. It is unfortunate
that some individuals have seen fit to come forward and make a complaint that
is completely false,"
The evidence presented in the pre-trial looked bad, but all of it could be
explained as someone trying to make money out of Michael - a person who has
been known to make some poor judgements in the past. Given a lawyer as good
as O. J. Simpson's - and Jackson has the money to pay for one, I said I wouldn't
like to bet on the DA's case. I should have laid money on this because on Saturday,
June 04, 2005 Michael was declaired innocent of all charges.
From June 2005 Michael kept a low profile but 'wrote' a new song
in response to the devastation caused by Hurricane Katrina, and looked for recording artists to collaborate with him on the
track to help aid for the victims of the natural disaster.
to Michael's spokesperson Raymone Bain, "In
response to the widespread devastation wrought by Hurricane Katrina, Recording
Superstar Michael Jackson has been moved to pen a song, with the working title,
From the Bottom of My Heart."
"It pains me to watch the human suffering taking place in the Gulf Region
of my country," said Michael. “My heart and prayers go out to
every individual who has had to endure the pain and suffering caused by this
tragedy. I will be reaching out to others within the music industry, to join
me in helping to bring relief and hope to these resilient people who have lost
The song was eventually recorded on 2 Seas Records, a label owned by Prince Abdulla
Hamad Alkhalifa of Bahrain, as 'I have a dream'. All proceeds from the sale will be donated to the
victims of Hurricane Katrina.
'Thriller 25' was released in 2008 to celebrate the 25th anniversary of 'Thriller'. It was recorded in Ireland. It peaked at number 1 in eight countries. It was followed by a series of compilation albums 'King of Pop' which did well.
Death 26 June 2009
Fans were stunned when Michael died suddenly on 26 June 2009. The circumstances surrounding his death can only be called 'odd'. Aparently Michael had being having trouble sleeping for some time and had become dependant on Propofol a powerful anasthetic. He had been given sedatives but these didn't seem to be working. His doctor gave in to Michael's request for this and administered a 25mg dose of the drug. He then said he left the room to go to the bathroom and found on his return that Michael had stopped breathing.
The doctor, Dr. Conrad Murray, stated he had administered cardio-pulmonary resuscitation for over an hour before finally calling for help at 12:22. What is odd however is that police say he made three telephone calls on his mobile during this time, speaking for 47 minutes in total. He did not mention these calls to the investigating officers.
Dr Murray, it has been suggested, gave a lethal combination of sedatives and propofol to Michael Jackson. He faces a possible manslaughter charge - it hasn't yet been decided if this will go ahead. It is possible that he spoke on speakerphone in those 47 minutes. It is possible that he was scared that he had killed Michael and wasn't thinking clearly. He did fail to take advantage of one of these calls to summon help however. Since that time he has faced threats from Michael Jackson fans - something Michael would have very much dissaproved of. He faces huge legal fees and is likely to have to sell his home to cover them.
Michael's children are now being looked after by Michael's mother but spent Thanksgiving with his father.
Michael's sudden death meant the cancellation of a series of 50 sell-out concerts he had planned. A memorial service was held on 7 July 2009 where a number of music stars performed. He was buried on 3 Sep 2009 at Forest Lawn Memorial Park, Glendale, California.
Michael's finalalbum 'This Is It' was released 26 Oct 2009 along with a single of the same name (released 12 Oct) A documentory 'Michael Jackson's This Is It' was released 27th Oct 2009 and almost immediately became the highest grossing documentory ever grossing over a quarter of a billion dollars.
Jackson's albums have been in the charts ever since.