News / Arts & Entertainment

Michael Jackson's Ex-Wife Says Doctors Took Advantage of Singer

Debbie Rowe, ex-wife of singer Michael Jackson, leaves after testifying in a lawsuit brought by the late singer's family against concert promoter AEG Live, at Los Angeles Superior Court in Los Angeles, California, August 14, 2013.
Debbie Rowe, ex-wife of singer Michael Jackson, leaves after testifying in a lawsuit brought by the late singer's family against concert promoter AEG Live, at Los Angeles Superior Court in Los Angeles, California, August 14, 2013.
TEXT SIZE - +
Reuters
— Michael Jackson's doctors competed for his business and over-prescribed medications to help overcome his “incredible” fear of pain, the late pop singer's ex-wife testified on Wednesday in a wrongful death trial.
 
“His fear of pain was incredible. I think the doctors took advantage of him that way,” Debbie Rowe said in Los Angeles Superior Court, which is hearing a lawsuit brought by the late singer's family against concert promoter AEG Live.
 
“Unfortunately, some of the doctors decided that when Michael was in pain they would try to see who could give him the best painkiller,” added Rowe, 54, who met Jackson while working as an assistant for a dermatologist who treated the singer.
 
Rowe, who has rarely spoken publicly about Jackson, said the King of Pop was treated for several ailments, including lupus and severe scarring from burns on his head. She cried during parts of her testimony.
 
Rowe and Jackson were married from 1996 to 1999 and she is the mother of his two eldest children, 16-year-old Michael Joseph Jackson Jr., known as Prince, and Paris, 15. Rowe has no custody over the children, who live with their grandmother, Katherine Jackson.
 
Katherine Jackson and Jackson's children are suing AEG Live over the singer's 2009 death in Los Angeles from an overdose of the surgical anesthetic propofol, alleging that the privately-held company negligently hired Conrad Murray as Jackson's personal physician and ignored signs that the singer was in poor health prior to his death.
 
Murray, who was caring for Jackson as the singer rehearsed for his series of 50 comeback “This Is It” concerts, was convicted of involuntary manslaughter in 2011 for administering the propofol that killed the star.
 
AEG Live has argued that Jackson, who was 50 at the time of his death, had prescription drug and addiction problems for years before entering into any agreement with the company.
 
It also has said that it did not hire or supervise Murray and could not have foreseen that the physician would have posed a danger to the singer.
 
Katherine Jackson, the singer's oldest son and nephews T.J. and Taj Jackson, sons of brother Tito Jackson, already have testified. Neither Paris nor Jackson's youngest child, Prince Michael Jackson II, known as Blanket, are expected to take the stand.
 
Video-taped depositions of Paris and Jackson's older brother, Randy, have been entered as testimony in the trial, which started in April and is expected to finish in September.

You May Like

Wikipedia Proves Useful for Tracking Flu

Technique gave better results than Center for Disease Control (CDC) and Google’s Flu Trends More

Turkish Law Gives Spy Agency Controversial Powers

Parliament approves legislation to bolster powers of intelligence service, which government claims is necessary to modernize and deal with new threats Turkey faces More

Video Face of American Farmer Changing

Average American farmer is now 58 years old, and farmers 65 and older are the fastest growing segment of the population More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Face of American Farmer is Changingi
X
Mike Osborne
April 18, 2014
The average American farmer is now 58 years old, and farmers 65 and older are the fastest growing segment of the population. It’s a troubling trend signaling big changes ahead for American agriculture as aging farmers retire. Reporter Mike Osborne says a new report from the U.S. Census Bureau is suggesting what some of those changes might look like... and why they might not be so troubling.
Video

Video Face of American Farmer is Changing

The average American farmer is now 58 years old, and farmers 65 and older are the fastest growing segment of the population. It’s a troubling trend signaling big changes ahead for American agriculture as aging farmers retire. Reporter Mike Osborne says a new report from the U.S. Census Bureau is suggesting what some of those changes might look like... and why they might not be so troubling.
Video

Video Donetsk Governor: Ukraine Military Assault 'Delicate But Necessary'

Around a dozen state buildings in eastern Ukraine remain in the hands of pro-Russian protesters who are demanding a referendum on self-rule. The governor of the whole Donetsk region is among those forced out by the protesters. He spoke to VOA's Henry Ridgwell from his temporary new office in Donetsk city.
Video

Video Drones May Soon Send Data From High Seas

Drones are usually associated with unmanned flying vehicles, but autonomous watercraft are also becoming useful tools for jobs ranging from scientific exploration to law enforcement to searching for a missing airliner in the Indian Ocean. VOA’s George Putic reports on sea-faring drones.
Video

Video New Earth-Size Planet Found

Not too big, not too small. Not too hot, not too cold. A newly discovered planet looks just right for life as we know it, according to an international group of astronomers. VOA’s Steve Baragona has more.
Video

Video Copts in Diaspora Worry About Future in Egypt

Around 10 percent of Egypt’s population belong to the Coptic faith, making them the largest Christian minority in the Middle East. But they have become targets of violence since the revolution three years ago. With elections scheduled for May and the struggle between the Egyptian military and Islamists continuing, many Copts abroad are deeply worried about the future of their ancient church. VOA religion correspondent Jerome Socolovsky visited a Coptic church outside Washington DC.
Video

Video Critics Say Venezuelan Protests Test Limits of Military's Support

During the two months of deadly anti-government protests that have rocked the oil-rich nation of Venezuela, President Nicolas Maduro has accused the opposition of trying to initiate a coup. Though a small number of military officers have been arrested for allegedly plotting against the government, VOA’s Brian Padden reports the leadership of the armed forces continues to support the president, at least for now.
Video

Video More Millenials Unplug to Embrace Board Games

A big new trend in the U.S. toy industry has more consumers switching off their high-tech gadgets to play with classic toys, like board games. This is especially true among the so-called millenial generation - those born in the 1980's and 90's. Elizabeth Lee has more from an unusual café in Los Angeles, where the new trend is popular and business is booming.
Video

Video Google Buys Drone Company

In its latest purchase of high-tech companies, Google has acquired a manufacturer of solar-powered drones that can stay in the air almost indefinitely, relaying broadband Internet connection to remote areas. It is seen as yet another step in the U.S. based Web giant’s bid to bring Internet to the whole world. VOA’s George Putic reports.
AppleAndroid

New in Music Alley

Beyond Category

Saxophonist Craig Handy has an exciting new band called 2nd Line Smith, which combines the organ-jazz repertoire of Jimmy Smith with the “second line” rhythms of New Orleans parade music. Craig Handy joins "Beyond Category" host Eric Felten at Washington’s Bohemian Caverns jazz club to talk about the music and perform with the band.

Blogs