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ANDERSON COOPER 360 DEGREES
Michael's Last Days: Jackson's Nurse Speaks Out; Michael Jackson and His Mom; U.S. Troops Leave Iraqi Cities
Aired June 30, 2009 - 23:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
ANDERSON COOPER, CNN ANCHOR: Tonight, a lot of breaking news, a lot of breaking developments. A striking new voice in Michael Jackson's death with a shocking story to tell: a nurse who says that Jackson repeatedly asked her about a powerful IV anesthesia drug. The drug is called Diprivan.
The nurse is Cherilyn Lee. We've not independently confirmed her story. She's going to join us on the phone momentarily.
But here's what she told the Associated Press about the call she says she received from a Michael Jackson staffer just about five days before his death. Listen.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
CHRILYN LEE, REGISTERED NURSE: ... employee of the household. And he called me and said -- he was very frantic, and he said, "Michael needs to see you right away. Can you come and see him?" And I said, "What's wrong?"
And I could hear Michael in the background, "Tell her, tell her that one side of my body is hot, it's hot. And one side of my body is cold, it's very cold." And I said, "Tell him he needs to go to the hospital. I don't know what's going on with him right now but I'm in Florida. And I cannot come."
But he needs to, you know, check that out immediately if he's having that type of symptom. I said, "I'm not comfortable with that. Tell him to please go to the hospital and check that out right away."
But he said, no, this is one side is very, very hot. One side is cold. I said, I don't know what that could be, maybe his heart, maybe his central nervous system.
And at that point I knew that somebody had given him something that hit that central nervous system because, you know, that's all he wanted was to sleep, but he was in trouble. He was in trouble Sunday.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: And joining us now on the phone is that nurse, Cherilyn Lee. She joins us now.
Cherilyn, you got that call last Sunday, so that was five days before Michael Jackson died. Did you follow up on it?
LEE (via telephone): Yes, I tried following up on the call. Unfortunately when he called me, I was in the emergency room in Florida myself. Got very lightheaded and dizzy, and so I was in the hospital my own self. So...
COOPER: So, you never had any follow-up conversation with anyone in the Jackson staff, did you?
LEE: I called -- no, I did not. I tried calling and I was unable to reach anyone.
COOPER: OK, and your involvement with Michael Jackson began several months ago. When was it that you met and that he began asking you about the drug, Diprivan? How long ago was that?
LEE: It was about three months ago. He started asking about it three months ago.
COOPER: And he brought up the drug in what context? How did it come up?
LEE: He said, "I am so sleepy. I cannot sleep. I want to have at least eight hours of sleep." We had discussed it before. And I said -- and, first of all, he asked me if I could just spend the night with him, just watch him to see his pattern of sleep.
And so when I did that, he said, "Now, do you understand, you know, do you understand I cannot sleep well? And all I'm looking for is just eight hours' sleep, just two hours, three hours."
And when I was there, he was sleeping really good. He rested. But in three hours, he woke up. And he said, "Now do you understand? I'm not pretending. I really need sleep."
COOPER: So, what did he say about Diprivan?
LEE: He said, this product -- when he said it, I said, what are you speaking of because it sound like so many other things. I said, what are you speaking of? He said, "This is the medication. I had it before." I said, "Who gave it to you?" He said, "My doctor, a long time ago."
He said -- and I said, "Well, who is the doctor?" He wouldn't tell me. He said, "When it hit my vein I went right to sleep and I was able to sleep really good." And I said, "Well, you know, let me check on this or whatever that is, IV, I'm sure it wasn't safe." He said, "No, my doctor assured me that it was safe."
He was so convinced that this was a safe medication. He said, "Can you find me somebody, can you find me somebody to come here and just watch me sleep and give me this med?" I said, "You know, I don't know what it is. I'm sure it's something that isn't safe."
I left his home. I went to my office. I got my PDR because he wasn't understanding it wasn't safe. I said, "Look, Michael, this is what this medication will cause. It will cause a lot of problems." And I went down the list in the PDR because I had it in front of me at the time.
And I said, "Michael, you're so concerned on wanting to sleep, and sleep well, more than two or three hours. But my concern is, you know, you have something like this, will you wake up. You know, you cannot do this." So he sees that, OK, and, you know, I didn't see him anymore. That was three months ago.
COOPER: Why, if you hadn't seen him in three months, would somebody on his staff call you out of the blue, especially if he had a doctor on his staff?
LEE: Because I had been working with him nutritionally from January. His energy was low when I met him. He said, I'd like to find out why my energy is so slow. And that's kind of how it started, and I was working with him to build up his energy because his energy was low. He had a lot of dryness on his hands. And...
COOPER: But my question is -- I understand that -- I understand why -- how you got involved with him to try to help out his energy nutritionally.
LEE: Well, initially we started off with energy...
COOPER: But why would, after a three-month absence of not communicating would suddenly, last Sunday, according to you, somebody on his staff call you saying he is in extreme -- he is in an extreme state and needs your help. Do you know why or did it just come out of the blue?
LEE: You know what, I didn't know myself. The only thing I thought of is he recalled the symptoms I was telling him he might have with that.
I was -- when I walked away from him three months ago -- I didn't walk away. When I last saw him, he was -- I thought he was convinced he was not going to have that medication. You know, because I told him the seriousness of this medication.
COOPER: And so you don't know for a fact whether or not someone did give him that medication, but that is your fear, that is your concern. Have you talked to authorities?
LEE: No, I have not because I didn't know whether or not...
COOPER: You have not been interviewed by police?
LEE: No, I have not.
COOPER: All right. Cherilyn, I appreciate you talking with us. Cherilyn Lee, obviously, we'll be trying to track this story down. I appreciate your time tonight.
Joining us now is Dr. Sanjay Gupta. Sanjay, what do you make of this? DR. SANJAY GUPTA, CNN CHIEF MEDICAL CORRESPONDENT: This is a medication well-known in hospitals. Diprivan is the medication she's referring to. A lot of people calling it Propofol as well. We give it for anesthesia, either to make people really sleepy or to put them out all together, which would require a breathing tube.
I'll tell you, Anderson, I've never heard about this medication being given outside the hospital. Even within the hospitals, they often have protocol. So, before you can administer this medication, you have to go through certain protocols and learn how to give someone oxygen and learn how to put a breathing tube in, all of that before you can even give this.
So, it's hard to believe that it would be given outside a hospital. That's just something I haven't heard of.
COOPER: The notion that the symptoms she describes, she alleges that on Sunday before Michael Jackson died, five days before he died, she received this call from a staffer. And he was saying part of him is hot, part of him is cold. What do you make of that?
GUPTA: It's really hard. I mean, there are several different things that can cause that. Most of those things are related to the central nervous system. So, something in the brain. Could either have been a mild stroke or something like that. It's really hard to piece together just based on that.
Oftentimes someone may become insensate, meaning they don't have any feeling on one side of their body or they have weakness on one side of the body. Just to have the temperature differentiation like that, I just -- it's just very hard to know.
COOPER: What feeling does Diprivan give somebody?
GUPTA: Well, it's interesting -- a sort of, colloquially within the medical community they call it milk of amnesia. It looks like milk. It's a creamy, white substance. And it looks like that in IV -- it's given IV. It makes you very sleepy, pretty quickly.
Part of the reason it's so attractive, it has what's called a quick on and quick off thing. So, you can give it to somebody, and immediately they go out. And as soon as you stop giving it to him, they immediately wake up. So, it is a good medication for use for small procedures, for example, in hospitals.
But I've never had it myself. But I think you generally just sort of fall asleep pretty quickly.
COOPER: All right, Dr. Sanjay Gupta, I appreciate it.
A lot of questions remain about this story. We'll continue to try track it down. Again, we have not been able to independently confirm the story that this registered nurse is at telling now.
The question of IV drug use may have figured somehow into some of the investigator's visits to the Jackson estate. Drew Griffin has been following all the details in the investigation, including new doubts about how well the scene is being preserved. He joins us now -- Drew.
DREW GRIFFIN, CNN SPECIAL INVESTIGATIONS UNIT CORRESPONDENT: Yes, I mean, that's one of the questions that a lot of people are talking about, the fact that they went back to the scene yesterday to collect more evidence.
COOPER: Police basically went to the scene initially after the death. Then two days go by.
GRIFFIN: They cleared it Friday. They said, we're done with the investigation. They left. The family comes in with moving trucks. They go in there, they move out some stuff. The family has been in and out all weekend long. And then lo and behold, the deputies show up, or I should say detectives show up on Monday and go in and remove two bags of evidence.
COOPER: So, if -- and it's not at this point -- but if it does become some sort of a crime investigation, the chain of evidence will be a serious question, if it ever gets to that.
GRIFFIN: It could be very problematic, if you get into a position where you have good defense lawyers like they do in L.A. But again, this is a death investigation, not a criminal investigation.
COOPER: What's the latest on the autopsy?
GRIFFIN: The latest is, from what we gather -- and Sanjay is here too -- the experts we're talking about are saying, look, the coroner knows what caused his death.
COOPER: Even though the toxicology -- is the toxicology report done?
GRIFFIN: Because most of the stuff is back. Correct me if I'm wrong, Sanjay. But they will know now what drugs was in his system and they will know basically the quantities, too. They'll be able to tell that. The second autopsy has been completed.
COOPER: Which is what the family had requested and Joe Jackson yesterday saying it was happening as he spoke with us yesterday afternoon.
GRIFFIN: That's right. The experts again that we're talking to believe that right now Katherine and Joe Jackson most likely, or the people they hired, know what killed their son.
The question is why isn't any of this being released? Officially, the coroner's office is not going to release it because they're still working on just the last part of the autopsy, which is the brain. It is time consuming. The brain has to be prepared.
But as far as what drugs were in his system, what if anything overtly caused his death, they should know that now. COOPER: Drew, let me go to Sanjay about it. You're a neurosurgeon and you're also a licensed medical examiner. What about the brain are they looking about?
GUPTA: Well, you know the time-consuming process is actually freeze-drying the brain and putting in a specific substance and then looking at it under a microscope trying to figure out if these drugs or anything else had an impact on the brain. So, when they give the final conclusion after four to six weeks, they've looked at every single organ in the body.
But Drew is absolutely right. Really within hours, probably before they released that first statement, they knew which chemicals were in his body. And within a couple of days just by looking at the blood, the can tell how high they were, were they at therapeutic levels, toxic levels or lethal levels.
COOPER: And there is now known to be a will, yes, Drew?
GRIFFIN: From what we understand from the family, that there was a will in 2002 and now that is in the hands of the family, and the family has hired a trust specialist, Burt Levitch, to make sure that is indeed a real will, you know, verified.
COOPER: We'll be talking to an attorney for the family in just a moment. We have much more ahead. A lot of new developments.
Let us know what you think about all this; the live chat happening now at AC360.com.
Just ahead, we're also going to look at the will or wills surfacing or maybe about to surface. Where Michael's mother, Katherine Jackson, fits into the picture and where father Joe Jackson might not. We'll talk to some of the lawyers on the case.
Also, who gets custody of Michael Jackson's three kids? How are they provided for? And new reports and some questions about whether Michael Jackson is their father.
Later, our first look at video of the rehearsals for Jackson's comeback concert. Take a look.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Work it.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: A recap of breaking news on the top of the show: firsthand account of a woman who says she was a nurse of Jackson's telling that three months ago he'd asked for a powerful anesthesia drug Diprivan. She also claims that someone from Jackson entourage called on Sunday saying he was in need of help. We're trying to confirm what she says; a number of questions raised by that story. Also today, word of one will surfacing from 2002. A reliable source telling another could be waiting in the wings. The Web site TMZ reporting a will is to be filed tomorrow; not saying which one or what it contains.
Joining me now, Jackson family attorney Londell McMillan, along with Diane Goodman and Burt Levitch, attorneys for Katherine Jackson, Michael's mom. I appreciate all of you being with us.
First of all, Londell, has the family received any results either from the medical examiner or from their own independent autopsy which Joe Jackson said was taking place yesterday about the toxicology results?
LONDELL MCMILLAN, JACKSON FAMILY ATTORNEY: Hi Anderson. I believe they have. And I'm not sure what the results are at this time. But we're focusing on the legal issues. But those results I do believe have come in, but I can't be sure.
COOPER: For you, what are the main legal issues you have to deal with right now?
MCMILLAN: The main legal issues have always been first and foremost protecting the best interests of the children and making sure that the family's legacy is protected as a result of Mr. Michael Jackson's estate, making sure that there is a final report with respect to his death and that we preserve his legacy with the dignity that it deserves.
And in some way, it may not be direct law but it's also trying to encourage those who attempt to just slander his name and his legacy and even encourage people like you, Anderson, to focus more on his work, his life, his legacy and not on these rumors and these reports that we often just hear out of the blue.
I need to challenge everyone to let's not forget the wonderful type of man that he was and not just get caught up on these rumors that we hear over and over. And you know -- you and I have known each other a while but I have to push you a little bit here because you're a respectable journalist.
But to see these kind of -- these kind of comments come in over and over is just something that just becomes intolerable. Let's focus on this man, his life, his family and let's not just give so much attention to all of these people who just come up with these -- these just hearsay reports without validation and without any kind of evidence to support it.
COOPER: Well, in due respect, our job is to talk about and investigate what happened to Michael Jackson. Obviously, there's a death involved. The state is investigating. The country, people are interested in knowing. And clearly, the family wants to know what happened to Michael Jackson.
I mean, there are clearly numerous people who have been very close to Michael Jackson over the years. Deepak Chopra among others who have been on this program saying that -- that Michael Jackson approached him about drugs.
And now this woman has come forward asking about Diprivan. Frankly, her story which I've tried to point out seems odd that somebody would call her even though she hadn't been involved with Michael Jackson for three months.
To your knowledge, was there any incident on Sunday before Michael Jackson died in which he was in some sort of need of help?
MCMILLAN: To my knowledge, there were none. But again, I didn't have that kind of personal daily interaction with him as of the time of his passing, or I didn't deal with him in a personal way. I'm his lawyer; I've been his lawyer for three and a half years.
But it's just seems odd to me that someone that did not have a real relationship with him gets that degree of credibility. I understand that someone who has known him, who has a history, has something to offer.
But we have to at least measure whether or not someone is credible. I believe, before we just give them a forum to kind of just wax uneloquently over someone like Michael Jackson in this time.
COOPER: Diane, let me ask you about the will that has surfaced. In terms of custody and the kids, is there any question now -- I mean, there's -- Debbie Rowe is obviously the biological mom of two of these children. There have been questions raised about whether Michael Jackson is the biological father.
Legally, does any of that matter? Or does all that matters, is that on the birth certificate for these kids, Michael Jackson is the father and that's the bottom line?
DIANE GOODMAN, KATHERINE JACKSON'S ATTORNEY: That is the bottom line. Michael Jackson is the father. Katherine Jackson has guardianship of the children. I believe that's what Michael Jackson would have wanted to have happen.
And the other legal parent is Debbie Rowe. She needs to be given notice of the hearings. She doesn't currently have any custodial rights. But she's entitled to participate in the proceeding if she so chooses.
So far she's made statements through her representatives that she has not made any comments on the case other than wishing the best for the children.
COOPER: So are custodial rights something which can be effectively signed away at some point?
GOODMAN: Well, there are ways of terminating parental rights. It did not happen in this case. Mrs. Rowe still is a legal parent. That doesn't mean she has a right to custody. You can be a legal parent but not have the right to see your children. There are many of legal parents out there who, for various reasons, courts have taken away their parental rights. That's different than terminating parental rights.
COOPER: Burt, you are a trust and estate expert, is that right?
BURT LEVITCH, KATHERINE JACKSON'S ATTORNEY: That's right, Anderson.
COOPER: How difficult is your job going to be in the next couple of months? And what are the main issues you are going to be kind of trying to figure out?
LEVITCH: Well, of course, we took action promptly to do whatever we could to secure the assets of the estate and try to bring some order to what likely is going to be a complicated process.
We now know that there is a will. And in due course, that will, will be presented to the probate court to be admitted to probate. And executors will be appointed by the court.
But that part of the process has yet to happen. The only thing that's happened so far is that Katherine Jackson has been appointed as special administrator of the estate. But that's on an interim basis.
COOPER: So, in your knowledge, is there more than one will?
LEVITCH: Not to my knowledge, but this is an interesting cast of characters. And as has been said, Michael's business affairs were often in transition. And I would not be shocked to learn that there is another document out there. It's not something we are anticipating, but it could happen.
COOPER: Londell, you've been an attorney for Katherine Jackson, as well as Joe Jackson, as well as I believe Michael Jackson over the last several years, one of several. Is that correct?
MCMILLAN: That is correct, Anderson.
COOPER: How do you -- I mean, I can't imagine trying to organize all of this, obviously in the midst of all of this sort of media circus that it threatens to become. How do you -- is there one person in charge? I mean, how do you go about trying to sift through, you know, the huge empire of Michael Jackson?
MCMILLAN: Well, it is a challenging undertaking and that's why we have three different lawyers here with specialties that speak to each of these interests.
I received a call from Mrs. Katherine Jackson Friday night. I arrived here in Los Angeles from New York on Saturday morning and we filed papers at 8:00 in the morning on Monday. So it clearly takes a team of experts and professionals to accomplish all of these issues. But it's a matter where you have to promptly, diligently, and prudently, with competent counsel so that it's not a circus.
You haven't seen us out in the media running around. But we felt it was compelling to come here today just to clarify what action was taken yesterday, the petitions that were filed, the custody -- temporary custody that was granted as well as the special letters of administration that was granted to Mrs. Katherine Jackson who, by the way, Anderson is one of the most remarkable women and loving persons that these children can ever have and we're grateful for them to be here.
So in addition to kind of dealing with the legal issues, providing support, comfort and advocacy for the family, the children, as well as his legacy, that's our priority and we're going to do so with first rate lawyers who are best in class in their respective areas and not just one person trying to do everything and running amok through this very, very important estate in these very difficult times.
COOPER: Everybody I've talked has said that Katherine Jackson is the best person to care for these kids and just a remarkable lady who has held close by Michael Jackson through all his ups and downs.
Londell, how is she doing?
MCMILLAN: She is doing as best as she can, quite frankly. She's a strong, loving woman. And I think what gives her so much hope is just knowing that Michael really, really cared for his family and his children. The children are with Mrs. Jackson and the family. They are a loving group of children. She's holding on.
But it's very tough for her. It's quite frankly it's very tough for all of her family, including Joe Jackson and her -- and Michael's siblings. But she's doing well and we're going to keep pushing for her. And thank you for asking.
COOPER: Well, give her our best. No mother should ever have to bury a child and especially under these circumstances.
Londell McMillan, I appreciate your time and your expertise. Burt Levitch as well, and Diane Goodman, thank you very much.
GOODMAN: Thank you Anderson.
MCMILLAN: Thanks Anderson.
LEVITCH: Thank you Anderson.
COOPER: A programming note, the public viewing for Michael Jackson is going to be on Friday at the Neverland ranch. CNN is going providing live coverage on it and of course, all the late developments as they happen.
Just ahead tonight, the status of Michael Jackson's kids, was Deborah Rowe the mom of the older two? Some new questions raised there. But you just heard the bottom line in terms of the will and in terms of the custody of the kids, that Michael Jackson was the father.
We'll have all the developments on that.
Also, Michael's bond over the years with his mother Katherine. You just heard Mr. McMillan talked about her just now. We'll show what their relationship was like over the life of Michael Jackson. And some new video of the Jackson comeback rehearsals. Take a look.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: They have personality, they're fun.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: We're following new developments in Michael Jackson's story tonight, including new questions about his three kids. We've been talking about that; we'll have that ahead.
But first, Erica Hill joins us with a "360 Bulletin" -- Erica.
ERICA HILL, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Anderson, Al Franken is going to Washington. In a unanimous vote today, Minnesota's highest court declaring the former comedian the winner of the last open seat in the U.S. Senate. A short time later Republican challenger Norm Coleman conceded that race. Franken's victory now gives Democrats a supermajority in the Senate.
Two Detroit teens in critical condition tonight after being shot at a bus stop. Seven teenagers in all were fired on; five of them were attending summer classes at a nearby school. Police are looking for two suspects in a green minivan.
A government advisory panel wants a ban on Vicodin, Percocet and others prescription painkillers which contain acetaminophen. It is also recommending reducing the strength of acetaminophen found in over-the-counter medications. Cold medicine as you saw there also things like Tylenol and Excedrin. The warning here is that acetaminophen can cause severe liver damage and even death.
And a CNN Hero honored today at the White House. The President is praising Alfa Demmellash as part of a tribute to nonprofits which offer grassroots solutions to community problems. Rising Tide Capital helps low-income entrepreneurs in New Jersey build small businesses. The CNN Hero was invited to the White House after staffers saw her honored by CNN Heroes -- Anderson.
COOPER: Well, that's cool and good for her. She's a remarkable lady.
Coming up next Erica on 360, Michael Jackson and his children. We'll take a look at the latest on the custody issues involved in the case. A new bombshell from a magazine says that the actual biological father of at least two of the kids is a Beverly Hills physician who is one of Michael Jackson's doctors.
Also, new video of the Michael Jackson taken during dance auditions for his London shows. Here's a sneak peek. You'll see more of it later on the program.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Everything is bigger and more intense in his world.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I'm afraid the sprinklers are going to go off.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: It's not clear if Michael Jackson's family will be in attendance on Friday at the public viewing at the Neverland ranch. Joe Jackson has appeared twice in public talking about his son and at the same time promoting his new record company. Katherine Jackson, however, Michael's mom, has not spoken out.
While Michael Jackson has been very critical of his father over the years, the abuse that Michael said he suffered as a child, his bond with his mother has always remained strong.
COOPER (voice-over): Through all the changes and controversies, lawsuits and low points, there was one constant, his mom. Katherine Jackson brought Michael calm. In life, she defended, shielded her son. And now she stands by him in death.
STACY BROWN, AUTHOR, "THE MAN BEHIND THE MASK": No one brought Michael the comfort that his mother brought him.
COOPER: Taking care of the family, taking care of his children. After Michael died, the 79-year-old Jackson matriarch shopped for sleeping bags and toys for them. She asked and was then granted temporary guardianship over Michael Jr., Paris and Blanket.
BROWN: It's pretty obvious that he wanted his mother to take care of the children. She was the backbone of that family. So, it only makes sense that she continues on.
COOPER: Insiders say she shielded him and comforted him. And in the darkest days of the child molestation trial, it was Katherine who never wavered.
MICHAEL JACKSON, SINGER: I love my mother.
TOM MESEREAU, FORMER JACKSON ATTORNEY: She attended every day of the trial. And she is a wonderful, spiritual, giving, kind person. She was Michael's rock during that trial, because I was, you know, not only would see her in court every day. But during the breaks, very often I would be in the room with just Michael and her. It was very clear how much he loved her, how much she loved him.
COOPER: The bond between the two seemed unbreakable. And a stark difference to the relationship Michael had with his father. While she grieved in private, he was on the red carpet rambling, even promoting his new record company.
JOE JACKSON, MICHAEL JACKSON'S FATHER: We own the record company called Marantz (ph) Record...
COOPER: If she gave him confidence, he told Oprah Winfrey, his father tried to tear it down.
OPRAH WINFREY, HOST, "THE OPRAH WINFREY SHOW": I think it's hard enough without a parent telling you that you're ugly.
M. JACKSON: It was very difficult. Am I angry with him? Sometimes I think I'm angry, yes. I don't know him the way I would like to know him. My mother is wonderful. To me, she's perfection. I just wish I could understand my father.
COOPER: Katherine and Joe Jackson have been married for 60 years, but that is on paper. Reportedly, the two have lived separate and apart for the last decade. While she lives in the family compound in Encino, California, he resides hundreds of miles a way in Las Vegas, preserving Michael's legacy and protecting her grandkids. Some say that is exactly what he would have wanted.
MESEREAU: He trusted her completely. Seeing her with those children just brings a smile to me. I mean, I think it's wonderful that she's going to be taking care of these beautiful children.
COOPER: Wow. Tonight: new pictures of Michael Jackson's kids and some questions about who their biological parents may be. These are photographs of Jackson's kids posted on the Web site TMZ.
As we told you, they are now with their grandmother, Katherine. Michael Jackson raised the kids. But tonight some of the allegations say he is not the biological father.
Randi Kaye has more in our new report.
RANDI KAYE, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Who's their daddy? Was Michael Jackson the biological father of 12-year-old Michael Jr. and his 11-year-old sister Paris? Or was it really this man, the Los Angeles dermatologist who treated Jackson for years?
"Us Weekly" reports Dr. Arnold Klein is really the father of Jackson's two oldest children.
JIM MORET, CHIEF CORRESPONDENT, "INSIDE EDITION": There's a big leap in going from being a person's doctor to being the sperm donor or father of your children.
KAYE: Dr. Klein is also the former boss of Debbie Rowe, the nurse Jackson married in 1996 and the woman who gave birth to his two oldest children, seen here in photos obtained by TMZ. She and Jackson divorced in 1998. (on camera): Here at his Beverly Hills office, just a block away from Rodeo Drive, Dr. Arnold Klein was reportedly well-known for providing Botox to the stars, including Jackson and Elizabeth Taylor. We came here to ask him if he's the father of the two children but couldn't get past the reception. Our repeated calls to him went unreturned.
(voice-over): For years, neither Rowe who gave up custody nor the pop star had ever divulged if the children were conceived through artificial insemination or if Jackson was the father.
MORET: It's widely been rumored that Michael Jackson is not those children's biological father. When you look at those kids, you look at Michael Jackson, you think, it doesn't make sense.
KAYE: And now this.
(on camera): The British tabloid "News of the World" reports it interviewed Rowe a few days ago and she said she was, quote, just the vessel, that it wasn't Michael's sperm adding that she and Jackson had never slept together or shared the same bed. She said she offered him her womb as a gift.
(voice-over): If Dr. Klein is the real daddy, how might that shake up the looming custody battle?
JEFFREY TOOBIN, CNN SENIOR LEGAL ANALSYT: This story, if true, is so bizarre that it's hard to imagine what the appropriate precedent might be.
KAYE: Michael Jackson's mother, Katherine Jackson, was granted temporary custody of the children this week along with the singer's youngest child, 7-year-old Prince, also known as Blanket, whose mother has never been identified publicly.
Why might anyone be interested in custody of children at this time? Money. Media reports say the pop star claimed a net worth of more than $230 million in 2007.
(on camera): How much do you think the value of Michael Jackson's estate will play in the future custody battle?
MORET: The only reason you would claim an interest in those kids in being the real parent is because you want the money. I can think of 200 million reasons why you would want to say you're those children's natural parent.
(voice-over): Whoever makes such claims will have to go DNA testing and be evaluated by the court. Legal controversies which dogged Michael Jackson in life may follow him to his grave.
COOPER: I guess I hate reporting on children because it just seems such a sensitive topic; this really only matters if in some way the custody issue is challenged. As we just heard from the Jackson family attorney, the bottom line is Michael Jackson is the father because that's what it says on the birth certificate. Whoever may be a sperm donor doesn't matter; sperm donor has no rights. Do we know if Debbie Rowe plans to step forward in any way?
KAYE: We were hoping, Anderson, she would help clear up some of this and tell us who maybe the biological father is, at least. But she's not talking. Her attorney though did give us a statement which reads in part, Debbie remains grief stricken, didn't say anything about paternity.
She says her thoughts are with the children and all of the Jackson family. To the extent she must respond to court proceedings that were started by others, she will, of course, do so at the appropriate time. But right now as you know they're under the temporary guardianship of Katherine Jackson, Michael Jackson's mother. That will be for a while now, at least for a month during the investigation and then maybe not until August before we know.
COOPER: There will be a hearing and Debbie Rowe will be invited to attend that hearing. Whether she does or not remains to be seen.
And if Katherine Jackson does get permanent guardianship, that might not be granted until August. There is some time in between to figure it out.
COOPER: All right. Randi Kaye reporting. Appreciate it Randy.
Many of you are weighing in on the latest developments in the story. You can join the live chat happening right now at AC360.com.
Coming up, doctors paid big bucks to be at the beck and call of celebrities. Who are these personal physicians to the rich and famous and how much pressure do they feel to give their patients whatever they want? Dr. Sanjay Gupta investigates.
Also ten young dancers chosen to share the stage of Michael Jackson. Imagine their excitement, the chance of a lifetime now gone. Tonight, a first look inside the auditions and rehearsals that brought them face to face with their idol.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: They get up on that stage and there are sparks flying everywhere.
COOPER: We don't know for certain what, if any, medications Michael Jackson was taking at the time of his death. His private physician, Dr. Conrad Murray, has said through his lawyer that he did not give Jackson the painkillers Demerol or Oxycontin. Dr. Murray was at Jackson's dying side, giving him CPR when paramedics were arrived.
He was being paid a lot of money to care for Jackson, reportedly $150,000 a month. The question is what exactly did that buy?
"360" M.D. Sanjay Gupta has been working that angle of the story.
GUPTA (voice-over): Michael Jackson, medical mystery. Many believe this man, Dr. Conrad Murray, holds the answer. He's known in the medical community as a concierge doctor, boutique M.D., doctor to the stars.
(on camera): He had a $150,000 a month doctor at his beck and call. That surprise you?
CHERYL BRYANT-BRUCE, CONCIERGE DOCTOR: No, not at all.
GUPTA (voice-over): Dr. Cheryl Bryant-Bruce would know. She's also a concierge doctor and charges up to $150,000 a year for 24/7 service anywhere in the world. She has at least 20 patients.
(on camera): I was curious to know what all that money buys you. What's the craziest thing you've ever done for a patient?
BRYANT-BRUCE: This young gentleman, he was in a panic because he decided that he might have an STD. And so I get called out in the middle of the night for this STD check, only to find myself in the middle of this very interesting party.
(voice-over): For another patient she traveled to Cancun for a week. Why? The patient wanted her own doctor with her just in case.
(on camera): Was that your friend?
BRYANT-BRUCE: There it goes.
GUPTA (voice-over): Just a few minutes into our interview Dr. Bryant-Bruce gets a call. And we get a glimpse into her life.
BRYANT-BRUCE: We can send a trainer with you. I understand that you're going on location and all, but we can send a trainer with you.
GUPTA (on camera): Did I hear you say that you're going to send a trainer, essentially a masseuse, to New York with that patient?
GUPTA (voice-over): Most of her patients are famous and wealthy; they expect discretion. That is why Dr. Bryant-Bruce wouldn't divulge too many names.
She took us along on a visit with another patient.
(on camera): We're about to make a real-life house called here. This is what Dr. Bryant-Bruce does several times a day, going to see her patients wherever they may be. (voice-over): The patient is Jimmy Coco. You may have seen him on E! He's legendary for providing tans, you know, those world class spray-on tans.
She checks him for strep throat and then gives him an injection, in this case, the anti-inflammatory, Toradol. But it got me wondering.
(on camera): Have you given shots of Demerol or OxyContin to your patients before?
BRYANT-BRUCE: I have, yes.
GUPTA: You know, it's interesting because a lot is made of the fact that Dr. Murray is not board-certified in cardiology and doesn't have hospital privileges.
COOPER: Dr. Murray, he was the private physician for Michael Jackson.
GUPTA: For Michael Jackson. That's actually not that uncommon. It's hard to get privileges at certain big academic hospitals if is you're not board-certified. But there are a lot of doctors practicing in the United States today who are not board-certified. So, I'm not sure that's going to be that big a deal in the end, Anderson.
COOPER: She -- the woman you profiled -- the doctor seems like a responsible doctor.
We talked a little bit last week and Dr. Deepak Chopra was critical about kind of L.A. doctors who want to be part of a star's retinue and are willing to kind of do whatever that takes. How big a problem is that?
GUPTA: Well, I asked her that question. I said, "Look, you're getting paid $150,000 a year; all your patients, millions of dollar if you add it up. If they come to you and say, look, I really want this. I'm giving you all this money, why won't you give it to me.
And what she said is, "I make the decision. Sure, I'm there for the patient as much as they want. But I tell them flat out at the beginning when it comes to narcotics, when it comes to certain things, we're just going to draw certain lines."
I think you're absolutely right. I think Dr. Chopra has a good point, because there probably is a very gray area there; a lot of money being exchanged. What exactly is that money buying?
That's what I was trying to get at here. She flatly denied that she's part of that. I imagine that that goes on.
COOPER: All right. Dr. Sanjay Gupta thanks.
Next, auditioning for an icon. Rehearsal video just revealed. Dancers who were about to live their dream; dancing the same stage with Michael Jackson, the moment they meet their idol.
You'll see some of that.
Also tonight, South Carolina Governor Mark Sanford; he says he's trying to fall back in love with his wife but also admits to crossing the line with other women. Details ahead.
COOPER: Michael Jackson's "This is it" tour was more than a series of comeback concerts. For ten young dancers who were chosen to share the stage with him, it was the chance of a lifetime. They came from around the world to audition for the coveted positions and had been rehearsing for weeks with the King of Pop right up until the night before his death.
Tonight we have a first look inside those weeks. No one knew them -- no one, of course, knew then how little time Michael Jackson had left. Take a look.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: When I was younger, I remember seeing him performing on stage. I was like, "I just want to feel what you're feeling."
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: They have personality. They're fun.
Congratulations. You are cast. We found them.
Thank you so much, all of you, for this special, memorable experience.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I've watched Michael since I was young.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It's really emotional. I cannot believe this.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: There was a VH1 week of Michael, and I watched it for a year.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Get ready. Wait until you see the audience.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I'm more than ready.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: They brought heart. They brought passion. They brought hunger. They also came here to book it.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: There's a lot of sweat on the stage right now. There's a lot of sweat and memories.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Hey, guys, I have someone here that would like to finally meet you.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Wow.
COOPER: Wow, amazing. You can go to ac360.com to hear what the dancers had to say about working with Michael Jackson.
We're following several other stories tonight. Erica Hill joins us again with the "360 Bulletin" -- Erica.
HILL: More emotional confessions today from South Carolina Governor Mark Sanford, who told the Associated Press he, quote, "crossed the line" with a handful of women other than his Argentine mistress over the year. He says he never had sex with them. He also describes his mistress as his soul mate, though he says he's trying to fall back in love with his wife.
A young child seems to be the lone survivor of a plane crash into Indian Ocean today. The Yemeni jetliner had more than 150 on board when it crashed while trying to land in bad weather on the island of Comoros.
Family and friends gathering to say farewell to Farrah Fawcett today; a private funeral in Los Angeles. Her longtime companion, Ryan O'Neal, was one of the pallbearers. The "Charlie's Angels" died on Thursday after a lengthy battle with cancer. Farrah Fawcett was 62.
And former vice presidential nominee Sarah Palin called the sexiest and riskiest brand in the Republican Party in a new "Vanity Fair" article. President Obama is also quoted in that report as saying during the campaign, he didn't think Palin would have enough time to prepare as a running mate and get up to speed.
Meantime, some fighting words of her own from Alaska Governor Sarah Palin in the latest issue of "Runners World" magazine, where she says she would beat President Obama one-on-one in a long distance race. She says sweat is her sanity, Anderson.
COOPER: She was talking about actual run.
HILL: She was going to run, exactly. Yes.
That if the two of them went out for a run she would leave him in the dust.
COOPER: She would win. Well, we'll see.
We're following other stories, Erica.
U.S. troops leaving Iraq cities, Iraqis celebrating, but where does the U.S. stand now? We'll look at that in a moment.
And one of the strangest "Shots" we've seen. A woman in a police interview with a surprise up her sleeve or actually rather down her shirt to be exact. It's our "Shot of the Day." Kind of have to see it to believe it.
We'll be right back.
COOPER: Turning point in Iraq today. Iraqis celebrated the withdrawal of U.S. troops from cities and towns. Nationwide festivities began last night in Baghdad ahead of the midnight deadline.
Today for the first time in six years, Iraqis and not Americans were in charge of security in their streets. The withdrawal, part of an agreement signed last year by former President Bush, calling for all U.S. forces to leave Iraq by the end of 2011.
Now, if that timetable holds, the mission will have lasted nearly nine years. Measuring the cost, of course, is an exercise in raw politics and, of course, human lives.
Tom Foreman has that.
TOM FOREMAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT (on camera): Anderson, the cost of Iraq is easy to see and hard to look at. In lives, more than 4,300 American troops have been killed, some 30,000 wounded, and somewhere between 100,000 and 200,000 Iraqi civilians dead, by most estimates.
In dollars, the Bush administration thought it would be quick and relatively cheap, $60 billion maybe. But the cost is now easily ten times that amount, and plenty of analysts think the tab could run to a trillion dollars or more before it's all over.
And, of course, international polls have found the world's opinion of the U.S. has plummeted since this war began.
The benefits of the war are trickier to calculate, since polls show most Americans are against it. They don't really see any benefits. But the war did take down Saddam Hussein and avert potential future threats from him and his sons. We now know Hussein did not have weapons of mass destruction, but we also know he did want them and had worked on getting them.
And democracy has emerged in place of a dictatorship. There are questions about whether or not it can defend itself in the long run. But for the moment, it is standing.
And there is this. Not only did the war's unpopularity lay the groundwork for Barack Obama's election, but it's also been a training ground for American troops learning to fight against insurgencies. Lessons that are already proving critical as they shift to the new president's top military concern now: the war in Afghanistan -- Anderson.
COOPER: Tom thanks very much. And a big concern Afghanistan is, indeed.
Next on 360, the strangest "Shot" yet. Something to make you kind of smile before you go to bed. A police interview and the surprise of a police officer's life; you won't believe what is living under that woman's shirt. We'll show you, ahead.
COOPER: Erica, for tonight's "Shot," a first and one of the strangest videos we've seen. Take a look at this. You can't make this stuff up.
A police officer in Ohio interviewing this -- oh, "Dramatic Animal Video" -- I forgot our graphic. There it is.
He's investigating a murder. A police officer interviewing this woman. All of a sudden, out of her shirt pops a baby squirrel.
HILL: It's disturbing on so many levels.
COOPER: She was just carrying around a baby squirrel.
HILL: There we go.
HILL: It's a field day for the squirrel.
COOPER: The police officer didn't miss a beat. He was stunned. He kept right on with his questioning. The woman and the squirrel apparently were released. They had nothing to do with the crime.
COOPER: And the sound effect was added. There you go. Why she had...
HILL: This is really...
COOPER: I'm curious to know why she had the squirrel.
HILL: I don't know. I don't have an answer for that, but I would like an answer and also why she decides that that's the best place to carry it.
COOPER: Yes. Well, yes. We'll just leave it at that.
HILL: Probably best.
COOPER: You can see all the most recent "Shots" and the "Beat 360" on our Web site at AC360.com.
Hey, that does it for 360. Thanks for watching.
I'll see you tomorrow night. "LARRY KING" starts now.