LOS ANGELES (AFP) – A heavily-drugged Michael Jackson said he loved children and felt their pain because “I didn’t have a childhood,” adding “I hurt,” in a harrowing recording played in court Wednesday.
In a phone conversation recorded weeks before his death in June 2009, the pop icon also said he wanted planned comeback shows in London to be better than the Beatles or Elvis.
In the semi-incoherent exchange with his doctor Conrad Murray — who is on trial for Jackson’s manslaughter — the star talked about establishing a Michael Jackson Children’s Hospital with money from the comeback shows.
“Elvis didn’t do it. Beatles didn’t do it. We have to be phenomenal,” he said, adding that fans should leave his shows saying: “I’ve never seen nothing like this in my life…. He’s the greatest entertainer in the world.”
Referring apparently to money made from those shows, he continued, in a heavy slur: “I’m taking that money, a million children, children’s hospital, the biggest in the world. Michael Jackson’s Children’s Hospital.
“Gonna have a movie theater, game room. Children are depressed. The — in those hospitals, no game room, no movie theater. They’re sick because they’re depressed.
After Murray replied, “I know you would,” Jackson continued: “I want to do that for them. That will be remembered more than my performances. My performances will be up there helping my children and always be my dream.
“I love them. I love them because I didn’t have a childhood. I had no childhood. I feel their pain. I feel their hurt. I can deal with it.”
Referring to his own songs “Heal the world,” “We are the World,” “Will you be There,” and “The Lost Children,” he added: “These are the songs I’ve written because I hurt, you know, I hurt.”
Murray is accused of involuntary manslaughter by giving Jackson an overdose of the powerful sedative propofol while trying to help him to sleep at his mansion in LA, where the star was rehearsing for the comeback shows.
The defendant’s lawyers claim the singer administered a fatal extra dose while the doctor was out of the room, and have tried to portray Jackson as heavily drug dependent well before Murray became his personal physician.
Part of the eerie audio recording was played on the opening day of the five-week trial last week at LA’s Superior Court.
Wednesday’s seventh day of testimony came after a pharmacist told the trial Tuesday that Murray had ordered over 250 vials of propofol, as well as large quantities of other drugs, in the two months before the star’s death.
Tim Lopez said that Murray never told him he was Jackson’s personal physician and did not say who the propofol was for.
Also on Tuesday a cocktail waitress and friend of Murray recounted how she heard mumbling and coughing while on the phone to him at around the time the singer was dying.
Sade Anding testified that Murray called her at 11:51 am on June 25, when she was in Houston and he was at Jackson’s rented mansion, trying to help the star get to sleep.
About five or six minutes into the conversation she said she realized that Murray was no longer answering and the sound became muffled as if the telephone was in his pocket.
“I said ‘Hello, Hello,’ and I didn’t hear anything… I pressed the phone to my ear,” she told the court. “I heard mumbling of voices… and I heard coughing,” she added.
The trial has already heard from paramedics who arrived at Jackson’s home at 12:26 pm after receiving a 911 call at 12:21 pm — about 20 minutes after the phone call with Anding.