Last Updated: Tue Nov 02, 2010 20:34 pm (KSA) 17:34 pm (GMT)

Jackson death homicide, criminal charge possible

Officials have launched an investigation into the circumstances surrounding the death of Jackson (File)
Officials have launched an investigation into the circumstances surrounding the death of Jackson (File)

Pop star Michael Jackson's death has been ruled a homicide from an overdose of propofol and other drugs, and police will refer the case to prosecutors for possible criminal charges, officials said on Friday.

The Los Angeles County Coroner said in a statement that propofol, a powerful anesthetic, and the sedative lorazepam were the primary drugs responsible for Jackson's death. Other drugs detected in his system were midazolam, diazepam, lidocaine and ephedrine.

Separately, the Los Angeles Police Department said its investigation into the pop singer's death on June 25 is ongoing, but that police are referring the case to prosecutors for possible criminal charges to be filed.

The list of drugs in Jackson's system reads like a cocktail of sedatives, painkillers and one stimulant. Midazolam is a sedative similar to propofol, used to make patients drowsy but not unconscious during procedures such as colonoscopies.

Diazepam, the generic version of Valium, is used to calm anxiety, while lidocaine is a painkiller and ephedrine is a stimulant.

The coroner said the complete toxicology report remains sealed at the request of the Los Angeles police and the Los Angeles County District Attorney.

The coroner's report is the first official statement that the singer's death has been ruled homicide.

Officials have launched an investigation into the circumstances surrounding the death of the "Thriller" singer, who suffered cardiac arrest at his Los Angeles mansion.

The probe has centered on prescription drugs Jackson had in his system, and it has focused on several doctors who were caring for the singer when he died, particularly his personal physician, Dr. Conrad Murray.

Warrants used to search Murray's office have said he is the subject of a manslaughter investigation.

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