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Paramedic on Michael Jackson call: Doctor's story 'didn't add up'

By Alan Duke, CNN
Dr. Conrad Murray remains free on a $75,000 bond. A pretrial hearing is expected to last two or three weeks.
Dr. Conrad Murray remains free on a $75,000 bond. A pretrial hearing is expected to last two or three weeks.
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • NEW: Michael Jackson appeared dead when ambulance arrived, witness says
  • NEW: Paramedic testifies Dr. Conrad Murray said he was treating Jackson for dehydration
  • Paris Jackson cried "Daddy!" as Murray tried to revive her dad, witness says
  • Murray delayed calling 911 for 21 minutes, prosecutor says

Los Angeles (CNN) -- Michael Jackson appeared to be dead when an ambulance arrived at his home at 12:26 p.m. June 25, 2009, according to a paramedic and a security guard who testified Wednesday.

"When I picked him up, his legs were quite cool," Los Angeles County Paramedic Richard Senneff said. "His eyes were quite dry."

No pulse was detected, and the paramedics' heart monitor showed Jackson was "flatlined" as he lay on his bedroom floor, Senneff testified.

Wednesday was the second day of testimony in a preliminary hearing to decide whether Dr. Conrad Murray will face trial for involuntary manslaughter in Jackson's death.

Prosecutors contend that Murray's should be held criminally responsible for giving the pop star a surgical anesthetic, propofol, at home without monitoring equipment.

Jackson's doctor heads to court
Murray faces court hearing
Events surrounding Jackson's death
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The coroner concluded Jackson died from "acute propofol intoxication," in combination "the contributory affects of the benzodiazepines," Los Angeles County Deputy District Attorney David Walgren said.

Murray allegedly delayed calling for help when he found Jackson was not breathing, misled paramedics and doctors about the series of sedatives and the anesthetic he'd given him and that he tried to hide evidence when he should have been trying to revive Jackson.

Murray told paramedics he had only given Jackson a dose of lorazepam to help him sleep and that he was treating him for dehydration, Senneff testified.

When he asked "how long the patient was down," the doctor responded "'It just happened,'" Senneff testified. The paramedic, however, said "it didn't add up."

Testimony Wednesday also included emotional accounts of crying and praying in the home as Jackson's children and employees realized something was very wrong upstairs.

Jackson chef Kia Chase said the first indication of a crisis was when Murray ran downstairs in a panic and asked her to send Jackson's oldest son, Prince, and the security guard upstairs.

"His eyes were enlarged," Chase testified. "He was screaming."

After the housekeepers started crying, the rest of the staff joined them, she said.

"We started praying," Chase said. "We held hands, and we were crying."

Jackson's two oldest children, Prince and Paris, watched from a bedroom doorway as Murray tried to revive their father before the ambulance arrived, according to Alberto Alvarez, who worked on Jackson's security team.

"Paris screamed 'Daddy!' and she started crying," Alvarez testified.

Michael Jackson's three sisters, parents and brother Randy listened from the second row of the Los Angeles County courtroom as Alvarez appeared to be near tears as he described the scene.

"Dr. Murray then said 'Get them out, get them out. Don't let them see their father like this,' " Alvarez said. "I turned to the children and I told them 'Don't worry, children, we'll take care of it. Go outside please.' "

Alvarez testified that Murray asked for his help in collecting medicines from around the bedroom.

"He then grabbed a handful of bottles or vials," Alvarez said. "He instructed me to put them in a bag."

It was only then, about 21 minutes after prosecutors say Murray realized Jackson was not breathing, that he asked Alvarez to call for an ambulance. It arrived four minutes later.

Jackson's former security chief testified that Murray seemed not to know how to administer cardiopulmonary resuscitation as he waited for paramedics to arrive at the singer's house.

Faheem Muhammed said he and Alvarez saw Murray crouched next to Jackson's bed "in a panicked state asking, 'Does anyone know CPR?' "

"I looked at Alberto because we knew Dr. Murray was a heart surgeon, so we were shocked," Muhammed said.

When defense lawyer Ed Chernoff asked if perhaps Murray was only asking for help because he was tired, Muhammed said, "The way that he asked it is as if he didn't know CPR."

Alvarez testified that Murray told him and Muhammed that he was inexperienced at mouth-to-mouth resuscitation.

"After the second time, he gave a breath, he said 'You know, this is the first time that I give mouth-to-mouth, but I have to do it, because he's my friend,' " Alvarez said.

Jackson appeared to be dead at that time, with his "eyes open and his mouth open, just laying there," Muhammed said.

Los Angeles County Deputy District Attorney David Walgren earlier said that Murray used "ineffectual CPR with one hand while the patient was prone on a soft bed." Using two hands with the patient prone on a hard surface is the proper method, he said.

Muhammed, testifying Tuesday, said he never saw Murray performing CPR on Jackson before paramedics arrived and transported the singer to Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center.

The hearing, which began Tuesday, is expected to last two or three weeks, with 20 to 30 witnesses testifying. Judge Michael Pastor will determine whether there is probable cause to send Murray to trial.

Murray remains free on $75,000 bond.

InSession Producer Michael Christian contributed to this report.

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