Michael Jackson was treated at an emergency room yesterday (June 5) for what his spokesperson described as a continuing back problem that flared up again a day before jurors in his molestation case we

Michael Jackson was treated at an emergency room for what his spokesperson described as a continuing back problem that flared up again a day before jurors in his molestation case were to return to work.

The singer, who has complained of back trouble throughout his trial, left the Santa Ynez Valley Cottage Hospital late yesterday (June 5) to the screams of fans. He had arrived nearly six hours earlier.

"Mr. Jackson's back has spurred up on him again," said the singer's spokesperson, Raymone K. Bain, soon after the singer arrived. "It's pretty serious. It was serious enough for him to come over here."

Jackson returned to his Neverland ranch about five miles away to await the verdict with his family. Jurors received Jackson's case Friday afternoon and deliberated for about two hours before adjourning for the weekend. They were expected to resume today.

The apparent medical problem was one of several the 46-year-old singer has faced at key points in his trial. Jury selection was halted in February when he complained of flu-like symptoms, and he said his back problem began on a day when his accuser was on the stand.

The singer said at the time that a fall had forced him to go to the emergency room, and he rushed back to court wearing pajama bottoms when the judge threatened to have him arrested.

Bain said stress contributed to the entertainer's back problem yesterday. "He's under a tremendous amount of stress right now," she said. "Other than his back, he is doing fine."

Although Jackson wasn't seen leaving the hospital yesterday, it was believed he departed in one of two sport utility vehicles that drove slowly away from the hospital through a throng of reporters and fans. His aides had erected white scaffolding outside the emergency room entrance to block the view of photographers gathered outside.

Several people chased after the vehicles in a chaotic scene reminiscent of his court appearances and one photographer was led away by police. Olivia Kennedy, switchboard operator at the hospital, said the staff had been asked not to release any information about Jackson.

Also yesterday, the Rev. Jesse Jackson said in an interview that he has arrived in the area to meet with Jackson. "I talk to him almost every day, and we have prayer," he said. "We are going to be in prayer as we watch and wait."

Jackson is charged with molesting a 13-year-old boy in February or March 2003. He is also accused of plying him with wine and conspiring to hold the boy's family captive.


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