July 28, 2009
Posted: 12:29 AM ET
The Daily Beast’s Gerald Posner on the new allegations that Dr. Conrad Murray administered the fatal injection to the pop star—and why the doctor’s legal team is hoping for an Elvis-like toxicology report.
...The Daily Beast was told by a source familiar with Jackson’s toxicology report that traces of at least six prescription drugs were found in his body. (Craig Harvey, the chief investigator of the Los Angeles Coroner’s Office, did not respond to two calls seeking comment.)
The best hope for the defense team is that the toxicology report is Elvis-like. When the original King of Rock ‘n’ Roll died at the age of 42 in 1977, 10 drugs were found in his body. Four were in “significant” quantities: codeine; Ethinamate, a popular sedative-hypnotic med of the 1970s; Quaaludes; and a barbiturate, or depressant, that has never been identified but is usually reported as Phenobarbital. Presley’s body also contained smaller amounts of the painkillers morphine and Demerol; tranquilizers Placidyl and Valium, and Chlorpheniramine, an antihistamine.
Presley’s body had no traces of his admitted favorite drug, Dilaudid, called the “Bentley of Heroin” on the street and recognized by doctors as between two to eight times more potent than morphine. (Dilaudid was pinpointed as the culprit in the May accidental overdose death of Las Vegas comedian Danny Gans.)
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