Conrad Robert Murray|
February 19, 1953
|Criminal charge||involuntary manslaughter|
|Criminal penalty||Four-year sentence, but served only two years|
|Criminal status||Released on October 28, 2013|
|Children||Che Giovanni Murray|
Conrad Robert Murray (born February 19, 1953) is a cardiologist originally from St. Andrews, Grenada. He was the personal physician of Michael Jackson until Jackson's death on June 25, 2009, in which he was implicated. He was subsequently charged with involuntary manslaughter, convicted, and sentenced to four years in jail, of which he served two.
Murray was raised by his maternal grandparents who were farmers in Grenada until he joined his mother, Milta, in Trinidad and Tobago when he was 7 years old. He grew up poor in Port of Spain, the capital of Trinidad and Tobago. He did not meet his father, Rawle Andrew, also a physician, until he was 25. Andrew, who died in 2001, was devoted to providing medical services to the poor. Murray finished high school and worked as a volunteer elementary school teacher in Trinidad for a while. After teaching, he worked to save up for college tuition as a customs clerk and insurance underwriter.
In 1973, Murray moved to Houston, Texas, where his father worked, to attend Texas Southern University, and graduated Magna cum laude with a degree in pre-med and biological sciences. Murray continued his education at Meharry Medical College, in Nashville, Tennessee, the same school his father attended, and the first school in the south for African Americans. He began his internal medicine residency at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota, and completed it at the Loma Linda University Medical Center in California. He then completed a cardiology fellowship at the University of Arizona.
Murray worked at the Sharp Memorial Hospital, in San Diego, as an associate director of its cardiology fellowship training program. In 1990, he opened a private practice in Las Vegas, and in 2006, he founded the Acres Homes Heart and Vascular Institute in Houston. Dr. Murray met Michael Jackson in 2006, in Las Vegas, and treated one of his children. Jackson hired Murray to be his exclusive personal physician prior to his tour in July 2009. Jackson insisted that Murray be hired by his show promoter, AEG Live, for $150,000 monthly, although AEG later claimed that there was never a contract with Murray.
At the time that he began working for Jackson in May 2009, Murray had reportedly fathered seven children by 6 different women. He was in arrears on the mortgage for the Las Vegas home occupied by his first wife and children, and owed child support to children outside of his marriage. He was married to Blanche, his second wife, whom he met at medical school, and helped pay rent for another woman, Nicole Alvarez. Murray met Alvarez at a gentlemen's club in Las Vegas when she worked as a stripper, and Alvarez gave birth to their son Che in March 2009. Another relationship, with a cocktail waitress from Houston, was also reported.
Murray was at risk of losing his California medical license due to unpaid child support to one of his children, and owed $13,000 to a California woman, Nenita Malibiran. Murray was a defendant in numerous civil lawsuits (though none for medical malpractice). By 2008, he had accumulated over $600,000 in court judgments against him for medical equipment and unpaid rent for his practices in Texas and Nevada. He also owed $71,000 for student loans at Meharry Medical College. Murray filed for bankruptcy in 2002, in California.
On June 25, 2009, only weeks after hiring Murray, Jackson died due to a lethal dose of propofol. Jackson's death was ruled a homicide; Murray admitted administering 25 mg of propofol intravenously, for insomnia, on the night of his death. Murray said he tried treating Jackson with other drugs, and claimed he only administered the propofol after Jackson insisted. Murray said he worried that Jackson had become dependent on the drug as a sleep aid, and was trying to wean him off of it. Propofol is normally given in a hospital or clinical setting, with close monitoring, and is not indicated or approved as a sleep aid.
In February 2010, Murray was formally charged with involuntary manslaughter. On September 27, 2011, Murray went on trial in Los Angeles. He was convicted in November 2011 and received the maximum penalty of four years in prison. His Texas medical license was revoked, and his California and Nevada licenses were suspended. After serving two years of his sentence, Murray was released on parole on October 28, 2013.
Jackson's father, Joe Jackson, filed a wrongful death lawsuit against Murray in 2010, but dropped it in 2012. Also in 2010, Jackson's mother Katherine and three children filed a separate wrongful death suit against AEG, claiming that the company was negligent in hiring Murray; a jury found in favor of AEG in 2013.