Michael Jackson’s child molestation trial entered its most salacious line of testimonies since the beginning of the case. The past week brought incriminating testimony from Jackson’s former guard, housekeeper, maid and cook, all of which testified to lewd acts of sexual misconduct from Jackson ranging from inappropriate tickling that escalated to fondling to oral sex.
Ralph Chacon, a former guard, recounted an incident where he allegedly witnessed Jackson performing oral sex on a young boy in a room outside of the shower.
Jackson’s former housekeeper, Adrianne McManus, testified that she saw
Jackson kiss and fondle the same boy, over his pants, in Jackson’s bedroom. McManus also testified that she saw Jackson inappropriately touch a young Macaulay Culkin and kiss him on the cheek.
A former maid of Jackson, who reached an out of court settling with him in 1996 for allegedly fondling her son, also testified to witnessing improper contact, also shower related, between Jackson and Culkin, as well as other children.
Michael Jackson’s former cook, Phillip LeMarque who also testified that
he witnessed Jackson fondling Culkin while playing video games at Jackson’s Neverland Ranch in 1991, further corroborated the housekeeper’s story. He said that while delivering french fries to the two at 3 a.m., he encountered Jackson’s hand down the crotch of Culkin’s pants. Shocked, LeMarque says he left and reentered the room more noisily as to alert Jackson of his presence.
Kyle Wyche, a senior sociology student at Morehouse, says that the witnesses are almost at as much fault as Jackson.
“If all of Michael’s employees were able to see these incidents occur and felt it was acceptable to go on without saying anything to any authorities, they should be in just as much trouble now for letting that happen,” says Wyche.
“They basically condoned him molesting other children. If this is true, Michael clearly has psychological problems, which might make it right in his head. All of the onlookers knew it was wrong and kept quiet,” said Wyche.
LeMarque said that he did not report the incident because he thought, “nobody would have ever believed this.”
Culkin, now 24, has not been called as a witness and has publicly denied that anything, of a sexual nature, occurred.
The credibility of LeMarque, like most of the witnesses, was called into question when he admitted to attempting to sell his story to tabloids. Both Chacon and McManus also made attempts to extort money out of Jackson.
Jonathan Shelton, a senior psychology student at Howard, said that the witnesses’ accounts should not be judged because they tried to make money from their stories.
“I don’t think that the witnesses’ credibility should necessarily be discredited because they tried to sell their story. Attempting to make money off of wanted information does not make their stories any less true. I’m sure most people in their position would have done the same thing, hopefully after reporting the behavior to the police,” said Shelton.
Jackson, 46, pleaded not guilty to 10 felony counts for incidents with a 13-year-old boy in 2003. He reached an out of court settlement on almost the same charges, with a different boy, for more than $20 million in 1993. The 1993 boy is expected to be asked to testify this week.