Michael Jackson arrived late to his child molestation trial Thursday to face a judge who threatened to arrest him and revoke his $3 million bail, but the judge took no action against the singer in ope
SANTA MARIA, Calif. (AP) -- Michael Jackson arrived late to his child molestation trial Thursday to face a judge who threatened to arrest him and revoke his $3 million bail, but the judge took no action against the singer in open court. The pop star's accuser resumed testifying, saying the singer once gave him wine.
Superior Court Judge Rodney S. Melville had issued an arrest warrant when Jackson failed to arrive on time, but told defense attorney Thomas Mesereau Jr. he would hold it for one hour.
Mesereau, who told the judge Jackson had suffered a severe back problem and was being treated at a hospital, paced outside court and talked on his cell phone until the singer arrived, a few minutes past the deadline. Jackson walked in gingerly, dressed in a jacket over pajamas and looked distressed.
Attorneys met with the judge in chambers before court resumed and Melville addressed the jury. "Mr. Jackson had a medical problem, and it was necessary for me to order his appearance," Melville said. He said he didn't want jurors to draw any negative inferences from the fact that Jackson did not appear or that the judge had to order him to appear.
"The trial is going to go forward. In doing that I'm not expressing any opinion about the case or Mr. Jackson or the district attorney," Melville said.
Jackson spokeswoman Raymone K. Bain said outside court that Jackson woke up around 4:30 a.m. and his "back gave out on him." She said he notified his attorney and others and was rushed to an emergency room, arriving at 5:45 a.m. She said Jackson had wanted to be in court to hear from his accuser, who took the stand Wednesday.
"I talked to Mr. Jackson about four or five times yesterday," she said. "He is wanting to be in court every day. This is about his life. This is not a joke to him."
The 15-year-old accuser returned to the stand and testified about a TV documentary in which he appeared with Jackson, showed them holding hands and then putting his head on Jackson's shoulder. The boy was a 13-year-old cancer survivor at the time.
The accuser's 14-year-old brother has testified he twice saw Jackson molesting his sleeping brother in the master bedroom at Jackson's Neverland ranch.
The accuser also said Jackson gave him wine in a Diet Coke can, saying it would help him relax amid all the media reports about the documentary. "He told me if I had ever heard of Jesus juice. He told me, 'Like you know how Jesus drank wine? We call it Jesus juice,'" he said.
"I drank a little bit of it and I told him it tasted ugly ... He said he knew I was stressed out from all the media stuff going on and the Jesus juice would relax me."
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