March 29, 2005
District Attorney Tom Sneddon said Jackson's inappropriate activities with these boys included kissing, hugging and inserting his hands into their pants. He also said there was a pattern of "grooming," or preparing the boys for molestation, but did not elaborate.Only one of the five has agreed to testify in the current trial, while some testimony will come from parents of the boys involved.
Jackson, 46, is on trial on charges he molested one boy - then 13 - at his Neverland ranch in 2003. In most criminal cases, evidence of past behavior is not admissible against a defendant. However, the California Legislature changed that in 1995, specifically in cases of child molestation and domestic violence.
Sneddon said the testimony about the five cases will show Jackson has a consistent pattern of abuse.
Meanwhile, comedian and actor George Lopez took the stand yesterday, as the parade of celebrities tied to the trial continued.
Sunday, Jackson was interviewed by Rev. Jesse Jackson on his Clear Channel radio program, claiming innocence.
"I gain strength from the fact that I know I am innocent. None of these stories are true," Jackson told the Rev. Jesse Jackson during an hour-long interview broadcast live over the Internet on Sunday morning.Many experts, pointing to yesterday's ruling, indicate that Jackson is in a nearly insurmountable hole when it comes to the possibility of acquital in the child molestation trial.
"I just want to say to fans in every corner of the Earth, every nationality, every race, every language, I love you from the bottom of my heart," Jackson said toward the end of the interview. "I would love your prayers and your goodwill, and please be patient and be with me and believe in me because I am completely, completely innocent. But please know a lot of conspiracy is going on as we speak."
University of Georgia law professor Ron Carlson, speaking this morning on Atlanta's WSB Radio, suggested that Jackson's legal team may begin to seek a plea deal to reduce the amount of time that Jackson would spend in prison.
Posted by: Odd Brian at March 29, 2005 09:44 AM (b4q3c)
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