AP source: Jackson doc bought anesthetic in Vegas
LAS VEGAS -- The powerful anesthetic that investigators believe killed Michael Jackson came from a Nevada pharmacy that was raided this week, a law enforcement official told The Associated Press on Thursday.
Dr. Conrad Murray bought the anesthetic propofol from Applied Pharmacy Services on May 12 and administered doses from that purchase to Jackson in the hours before his June 25 death, the official said.
Authorities are focused on propofol as a central element in Jackson's death at age 50. The drug is usually administered by anesthesia professionals in medical settings to render patients unconscious for medical procedures, but Jackson had been using it in his home.
Drug Enforcement Administration agents and police served a search warrant Tuesday and took evidence showing Murray legally bought the propofol from the store, said the official, who requested anonymity because the investigation is ongoing.
The warrant lists two lot numbers for the drug, made by two different manufacturers, and both were found in Jackson's rented Beverly Hills mansion after his death, the official said.
Investigators have not determined if Jackson had been given shots from one or both batches of the drug.
Murray told investigators he gave Jackson the drug as a sleep aid, along with multiple sedatives, in the hours before Jackson died, the official said. Investigators think Murray left the room where Jackson was sleeping for a few minutes to make phone calls and returned to find the pop icon not breathing.
While investigators believe propofol was the principle factor in Jackson's death, they have not ruled out the possibility that other medications played a role.
Murray's attorney, Edward Chernoff, declined repeated requests for an interview. He has said Murray never gave Jackson anything that "should have" killed him and referred new queries to a published report in which he criticized investigators for rushing to condemn Murray.
"From the beginning, they leaked that propofol killed him," Chernoff told the Los Angeles Times. "It has appeared the investigation was designed to support a conclusion they already made with regard to Dr. Murray."
Tuesday's warrant filed in Clark County District Court shows detectives hoped to find records including credit card receipts, shipping orders or mailing lists showing that Murray or his employees bought prescription medications "including but not limited to" propofol on May 12.
A woman who answered the phone at Applied Pharmacy Services hung up without commenting.
After a 90-minute search, investigators seized only paperwork from the pharmacy, the warrant shows. No details were provided.
The search came weeks after police and DEA agents served warrants and removed records and items from Murray's Las Vegas home and medical office. And on July 22, authorities seized computer hard drives, medical equipment invoices, phone records and other items from Murray's Houston clinic and a rented storage unit.
The Los Angeles County coroner's office said it has completed its work determining Jackson's cause of death.
But officials said the results -- including an analysis of medications found in Jackson's system -- won't be made public until the police investigation is complete.
(Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)