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Father Charged With Killing and Dismembering Son; MJ`s Security Chief: My Life With The King Of Pop
Aired August 23, 2011 - 21:00:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
DR. DREW PINSKY, HOST: So here we go.
A member of Michael Jackson`s inner circle is here, and he is setting the record straight about molestation, drugs, and Michael Jackson`s private life.
Plus, a father admits to savaging his own little boy and then dumping his remains. Is there any way to understand this?
And stay-at-home moms, listen up. Are you at risks just because you don`t work?
Let`s go figure this out.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Tonight, hundreds of people crowded this Thibodaux park to remember Jori Lirette.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: He has touched so many people in this community.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Police arrested his dad, Jeremiah Wright, for his murder.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: He was outside pacing back and forth with this look on his face.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: If we would have only known what could have possibly been going through his mind.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Jori had cerebral palsy, but he had a way of communicating that made everyone who knew him love him.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: He will be missed sadly and deeply.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
PINSKY: I spend a lot of my time asking a question, which is, why do people do what they do? And this one next story is so horrific, I almost can`t bear to find out.
Why would a father kill his own 7-year-old son, and in a gruesome way? I don`t want to go into details about it.
His mom, Jesslyn Lirette, said little Jori loved his father more than anyone else in the whole world. She discovered his remains.
Police say the boy`s father has confessed to the killings. On Sunday night, she spoke about Jori. The young boy had cerebral palsy. She spoke about him at a candlelight vigil.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JESSLYN LIRETTE, JORI`S MOTHER: He has touched so many people in this community from school, to my friends and my family.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
PINSKY: Jori was laid to rest earlier today. Tonight, we want to know why a father would kill a child who could neither walk nor talk.
Joining me, Scott Silverii, police chief of Thibodaux, Louisiana, and Mayor Tommy Eschete, who has been talking with the family.
Now, Scott, as police chief, you were quoted as saying that the dad killed his son because he was sick and tired of caring for him. Where did you hear that?
CHIEF SCOTT SILVERII, THIBODAUX, LOUISIANA, POLICE DEPT.: Well, those were some of the reports that were given to our detective in the initial investigation.
PINSKY: Do you have any other information about possible motives?
SILVERII: At this time, no we haven`t. We`re still continuing the investigation, but there`s no been no clear motive as to why he actually did that.
PINSKY: And Mayor, I understand you`re communicating with the family. Did the father have a job? What did he do for a living?
MAYOR TOMMY ESCHETE, THIBODAUX, LOUISIANA: As we understand it, in speaking with Scott, is that he was currently unemployed. So, as I understand he was taking care of his son at home.
PINSKY: And Chief Silverii, you have been speaking to the family. How are they doing now? I mean, this was a gruesome event. My understanding is that you personally were affected by this, it was so sort of bizarre.
SILVERII: Yes, sir. Last Sunday, I stepped out of church and I received a page, a notification, from our communications headquarters that there had been a murder in the city. And I proceeded directly there.
And by that time, some officers had already arrived on the scene and began securing the location and conducting the investigation. I guess my first thing as a trained law enforcement officer is to preserve the evidence and secure the scene. And then, as a supervisor, as the chief of police, is to start to assess the condition of my men and the capability of those officers and put them in responsible positions based on their capabilities.
It really made it a challenge, because I started to see the emotion seeping through with all those officers. But the resolve was to absolutely remain professional, committed, and make sure they did the job to the best of their ability.
PINSKY: My understanding, Mayor, is that you`ve spoken to the family, and that his father had no prior history of anything like this.
ESCHETE: Not to the best of our knowledge. When Chief Silverii called me last Sunday and arrived on the scene, actually, the mother had just arrived there. And detectives were taking her away from the scene just because it was so gruesome.
When I got there, I was still in a situation where I hadn`t been totally informed of what had happened. And once Chief Silverii and Captain Fontino (ph) told me what happened, I can understand now why I saw what I saw on the faces of the officers that were there.
And it was a total state of shock. It was something that, again, you know, we don`t expect in a town the size of Thibodauz. But then, again, where would you expect something like this to happen? And certainly the answer to that is nowhere.
PINSKY: And Chief, you were quoted as saying that the father was stoic, emotionless, and non-confrontational.
Is that how you found him to be?
SILVERII: Yes, sir. When the initial officer arrived on scene, he was sent to dispatch to investigate something that they thought was a suspicious object, possibly a head, a human head.
I was the one -- when the officer drove up there, he encountered the father, Jeremiah Wright. And very emotionless. He was actually looking over the railing, looking where the child`s head was laying on the side of the road, and then expressed to the officer that it was just a CPR dummy.
And never was there any remorse, any outrage. Just, again, very, very stoic, very non-confrontational, to the point where they took him into -- they secured him, brought him back to the office. And throughout the course of his investigation, interview and confession remained very monotone, very consistent in his speech.
PINSKY: Now, Chief, I want to -- this is sort of a stunning little piece of information here. The child`s body parts are there, and he`s saying it`s part of a dummy. Was he in some altered state where he actually believed that? And did he maintain that?
SILVERII: Well, obviously, we can`t speak to his mental state. He spoke - - he appeared to be lucid.
He spoke comprehensively. He was able to answer the questions that were asked of him. When he was placed into the unit, there didn`t seem to be any state of confusion.
He was just, again, very methodical about his answers to the officer. He seemed to be very calm. And again, the body -- the rest of the child`s body, other than the head, was placed in a series of white plastic garbage bags.
PINSKY: Chief or Mayor, maybe this is outside of something you`re comfortable speculating about, but how do we make sense of this? And again, I think in terms of bath salts or methamphetamine, or things that make people phamacologically do horrible, horrible things that are outside of the usual human lexicon.
Do you guys have any theory about what happened here?
SILVERII: No, sir. We have no theory or hypothesis.
We`re just in the early stages, actually, continuing the investigation. We`re doing historical investigating, talking to his family, interviewing his friends, his associates, anyone that has any history to give us any insight into it. From our early investigation, there`s been no indication that there was drug abuse or any type of psychosis or mental -- emotionally disturbed.
PINSKY: And finally, Mayor, how`s the community handling this? How`s the rest of the town -- I understand lots of people have shown up for the vigil and there`s a lot of support for his mom, Jori`s mom.
ESCHETE: Sure. You know, last night we had some individuals from our community actually organize a candlelight vigil in town. We probably had 600 to 800 people that attended.
You k now, Thibodaux, again, a small community, 15,000 citizens. South Louisiana is a caring and compassionate area here in Louisiana, and certainly our citizens came.
It was a shock to them. And it didn`t surprise me one bit, the fact that they rallied to console and to help grieve and go through the healing process with Ms. Lirette and her family and friends. And also the students that young Jori was going to school with. He had been in the school system for about three years now.
So, you know, the outpouring of condolences and sympathy to the family and friends was not something that we didn`t anticipate. It`s pretty commonplace here in Thibodaux.
PINSKY: Well, next -- thank you, gentlemen -- more insight into why anyone could kill their own 7-year-old son. We`re going to learn how a whole town and even a seasoned 25-year veteran of CNN was touched by this little boy whose short life was so horribly taken away.
Be right back.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Jeremiah, did you kill Jori? Why did you do it?
(END VIDEO CLIP)
PINSKY: That is the question all of us are asking, why? Why did a father admittedly kill his own son? Police say he confessed to the crime.
Seven-year-old Jori was buried today. Tonight, we`re looking at the why.
Here are reaction from two neighbors. Then we`ll get reaction from our panel.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: He was outside pacing back and forth with this look on his face that he was contemplating doing something.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Knowing that we saw him the night before, it`s like, if we would have only known what could have possibly been going through his mind. You know, could you have prevented it?
(END VIDEO CLIP)
PINSKY: Oh, it`s so sad.
And we are back with our guests.
We`re joined by Michelle Golland, clinical psychologist. On the phone is Rick Martin. He has been with CNN for 25 years. He`s an assignment editor at the network.
And Rick, apparently, you were so moved by this story, that you actually pitched it to us and made us aware of it. And of course you`ve seen a lot of tough stories.
Tell us why this one really got to you.
RICK MARTIN, CNN ASSIGNMENT EDITOR: Well, I`ve got to tell you, Dr. Drew, it`s my job to find the facts and find information, and search for answers to stories as I continue to dig. But when covering this story in particular, I was just dealing with sort of -- I was battling emotions that I wasn`t expecting, probably so because I`m a father and I was thinking of my own kids.
And as I was talking to the police chief regarding the story, I could not get the answers. I could not find out why someone would do something to a child so defenseless and just shocking. And you know, he was wheelchair- bound. It was just extremely difficult to cover.
PINSKY: Yes. It`s why I keep thinking about something that alters the normal brain function. I mean, I hear about bizarre behavior with bath salts. I`ve seen bizarre behavior with methamphetamine.
But Rick, as I understand it, there`s no evidence or history of that sort of thing. Is that right?
MARTIN: Correct. And everything that I`ve been trying to find, there was no evidence in my digging, nothing at all in talking to the police chief and detectives. It still baffles me, the whole story itself.
PINSKY: Rick, I can hear that it affects you deeply. But thank you for bringing it to our attention.
And we`re looking now at the boy`s father, who confessed to his son`s gruesome murder. I would like to ask Michelle Golland what she thinks could drive a father to do this kind of thing.
MICHELLE GOLLAND, PH.D., CLINICAL PSYCHOLOGIST: You know, I, like you, was thinking, was there drug abuse?
PINSKY: Right. It`s so outside of the normal lexicon of human behavior.
GOLLAND: Yes, absolutely.
PINSKY: You think, oh, a brain that`s not working right, doesn`t know what he`s doing. The police chief told us that he actually called the child`s body parts of a dummy.
GOLLAND: Right, which makes me think of psychosis in some way.
PINSKY: Deep psychosis. Profound psychosis.
GOLLAND: Right. But there doesn`t seem to be a history of that.
The other thing that I have a question about is the history of domestic violence and possibly domestic violence within the home, and even other possible child abuse within the home, given the fact that there had been a restraining order taken out a while ago by the mother.
PINSKY: Against -- against her or against the child?
GOLLAND: Against the father for the mother --
PINSKY: For the mother.
GOLLAND: -- shortly after the baby was born, or I guess taken out of the hospital.
PINSKY: I want to go back to police Chief Silverii. And maybe he can sort of enlighten us about this.
Is that true, Chief, that there was a restraining order out there for some previous violent behavior?
SILVERII: Yes, sir. In 1994, I believe when she was still pregnant with the child, she had filed a restraining order. She didn`t pursue it and it lapsed.
And then shortly after the child was born, maybe within six months of his birth, she filed another restraining order against Jeremiah Wright and didn`t pursue it, and then it lapsed. And those were the last two.
Actually, a month before this incident happened last week, my police department was called out there for a disturbance, but it wasn`t a disturbance over violence, it was over a money dispute. And there had been no physical contact or violence. So, again, a month prior -- since 1994, documented the next incident would have been a month ago, when the officers were called out over a money dispute between the two.
PINSKY: So, Michelle, one theory that it`s escalating domestic violence.
GOLLAND: Well, absolutely. And one of the -- you know I`ve worked in domestic violence for years. And one of the things that we know about domestic violence is, as a woman, you are more likely to be killed while you`re pregnant or when you`re leaving.
PINSKY: Leaving -- when you`re out.
GOLLAND: When you`re trying to leave. And I guess it`s been reported that she was actually in the process of leaving him. And now that I just hear that the police had been called a month prior around money, you know --
PINSKY: You wonder. It makes you wonder.
GOLLAND: You wonder.
PINSKY: Let me try a different tact. How about the fact that this was a severely disabled child, and that makes for a difficult marriage in the best of situations.
PINSKY: It`s stupendously stressful to take care of -- particularly as the child seems to be heading towards adolescence. It gets extra stressful then. But I`ve never heard of anyone -- I`m not familiar with people harming those children.
Is that something that`s reported?
GOLLAND: You know, there is. And there is a higher number of children in those situations being abused because of the level of frustration.
So that`s where we get around these issues of, like, how is there -- is there support in the community for families that have disabled children? What kind of funding do we have in our government and in these sorts of programs to help families? So, it does actually increase, because people, as you know, when you`re stressed emotionally, and then you have a disabled child, and you`re financially stressed, which clearly this couple was, it can really add and escalate the tension and violence.
PINSKY: Police Chief Silverii, I want to go to you. I hope you don`t mind me bringing this up, but I`ve been informed you have a special needs child. And this story must hit very close to home to you.
And believe me, I`m in no way -- in no way is Michelle nor I suggesting that because somebody has a special needs or difficult child, this is in any way justified or appropriate. But this still must have hit very close to home for you.
SILVERII: Yes. You know, it does. And just listening to Rick Martin, he and I spoke about a week or so ago, and he shared the fact that he has a couple children. And I shared with him that I have a young son just about Jori`s age with special needs.
So, you know, you`re right. When I said, when we got out to the scene, your professional training has to take over. Kind of that automatic mindset. But in the back of my mind, my son was there.
As a result of that, I missed his first day of kindergarten last Monday. And when I finally got home on Tuesday, and I was able to see him that night, I held him like I always do, but I just wept while I held him.
And I just thought, wow, how unfair. Here my son`s in this loving environment and nurturing environment, and poor Jori didn`t have the same benefit.
PINSKY: It`s so true. And thank you for sharing that with us, Chief.
Mayor, finally, to you. We`ve got about a minute.
Michelle Golland brought up the fact that people that are financially stressed and have special needs kids have a lot of resource needs. Do you feel that there are adequate resources in your community?
ESCHETE: You know, unfortunately, the issue is not whether or not the resources are available. It`s to identify those individuals who need the help.
And if we look back, as Chief Silverii said, at the history with the couple and their life together, it was hard for us to identify an issue where we could have brought in counseling and so on because of I guess an era between the child`s birth and just recently, which is almost seven years. There`s really not much history there.
There wasn`t, I guess, a constant -- a history of domestic violence in the home. So when this happened, it came to us, I guess, as a surprise because of the fact that we didn`t have a repeated call for help from the mom for domestic violence issues.
You know, unfortunately it`s the fact that we just can`t identify those problems. I don`t think it`s the issue that we don`t have the resources to help them.
PINSKY: So, again, for the people out there watching, if you are aware of something that needs to be reported, here you`re hearing from the mayor there are resources out there. But please don`t be shy about accessing or reporting. That`s the message here today.
Thank you, Mayor.
Chief, well done. Thank you for sharing your personal story.
And Michelle, thank you, of course, as always.
Ahead, Michael Jackson`s bodyguard rips the lid off of the rumors that have swirled for years around his client.
But first off here, your calls and comments about a new study. Could working moms be setting themselves up for depression simply by not having a job?
Stay with us.
PINSKY: A new study finds that stay-at-home moms are more likely to be depressed, while working moms are likely to have a better sense of well- being, unless they have unrealistic expectations about being some kind of super mom.
Well, we asked your opinion, and you apparently have a lot to say. So let`s go to the phones.
Shannon in Arizona, go ahead.
SHANNON, ARIZONA: Hi, Dr. Drew.
PINSKY: Hi, Shannon.
SHANNON: I`m not surprised with these findings. I left the workforce about seven years ago to become a stay-at-home mom. And it really does get depressing.
You don`t get a break. You miss out on the social aspect of going to work every day. And I think that`s really important.
And I found that a lot of people just assume that because I was now at home, that I was just sitting around dolled up all day doing nothing. And it`s really -- it gets difficult. It really, really does.
PINSKY: I hear in that last part of your comment resentment at not being valued for what you do. And first of all, that`s awful. I mean, stay-at- home moms work very hard. They have a huge job, number one.
Number two, it`s depleting. It`s depleting, and there`s no way to renew, to get a sense of yourself in the world such as doing a job where you`re contributing in a way other than being a mom. But I think the theme tonight is balance.
There`s a time for everything and trying to maintain a balance. And I think if you can do everything in its time, it`s a pretty healthy way to proceed.
Let`s look more at this. Here`s Natalie in California.
NATALIE, CALIFORNIA: Hi, Dr. Drew.
I just want to say that I really love your work and that I agree that stay- at-home moms are probably more prone to depression. I personally never envisioned myself being someone`s mother, let alone a housewife, and it`s been a really long, hard road.
I`ve had issues with alcohol and depression and a divorce. In spite of all this, my kids turned out really amazing. And I`m really proud of them.
And now that I`m sober and working, things are much better, and I haven`t been depressed in a long time. But I think a lot of women are just not cut out for it and some women are.
PINSKY: It`s true. But again, about achieving balance -- first of all, congratulations on your sobriety. Well done.
And then, number two, your kids are great because of you. It`s because of your dedication, because of your sacrifices that you have great kids.
And we need to find a way to pay tribute to that. There should be, like, statues and awards handed out for moms. Honestly, we just don`t give them enough kudos.
Angela asked, "Do you think burn-out is always on the horizon for stay-at- home moms?"
I don`t know that it`s always on the horizon, but that`s kind of what we`re talking about here. It`s depletion, that you`re depleted. And if you`re not careful, you don`t have another way to sort to fill yourself with some sort of other activities.
And being in the workforce is one of those potential activities, provided that you don`t try to do everything. In other words, the whole idea of being a super mom is also the wrong idea. Balance is the right idea.
Wendy writes, "Here`s my dilemma. I told my husband I`d return to the workforce after our child was born, but now I can`t bring myself to leave my baby. What do I do?"
And that`s always a very surprising part about this for people, which is you love your baby so much, you don`t want to leave. And maybe the thought here is we need to figure out when the right time is to go back to the workforce. It may not be in those first six months. It may not even be in those first three years. But to have the option to go when it is right is really what we`re talking about here.
Now, next, the man responsible for protecting the lives of Michael Jackson and his children, no one had more access to the "King of Pop" or the intimate details of his life. Michael Jackson`s former chief of security is here with me after the break.
Stay with us.
DR. DREW PINSKY, HOST: Breaking news in the upcoming manslaughter trial of Michael Jackson`s Dr. Conrad Murray. He is accused of giving the King of Pop a lethal dose of what is a surgical anesthetic. Now, tonight, Murray`s attorneys have asked the court for his sequestered jury, filing a petition that says, quote, "There`s a reasonable expectation" -- and I think they`re right -- "that Dr. Murray`s trial will be the most publicized trial in history," unquote.
Now, over the coming weeks and months, HLN will be covering this trial like no other network, and I personally will give you insight that I bet you just can`t get anywhere else. I`ll be bringing you exclusive interviews from Jackson insiders that you can only see right here on this set.
And tonight, I talk one-on-one with the man who is part of the entertainer`s most inner circle. Watch this.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
PINSKY (voice-over): Michael Jackson`s chief of security was responsible for keeping him and his children out of harm`s way, but Michael La Perruque also built a strong bond with the King of Pop. He became one of Jackson`s closest confidants. Perruque`s knowledge of Jackson`s private life was so intimate that he was subpoenaed at the infamous 2005 molestation trial. Now, his name is surfaced as a possible witness in the upcoming murder trial surrounding Jackson`s untimely death.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
PINSKY (on-camera): And Michael La Perruque is with me now. Michael, you saw Michael Jackson just before he died. I guess, a few weeks before. Tell us about that and that conversation you had with him.
MIKE LA PERRUQUE, MICHAEL JACKSON`S HEAD OF SECURITY: Well, Michael was attending a party that was put on by Janet. It was a surprise party at a restaurant in Beverly Hills. And, I was in charge of running the security for that particular party. Shutting it down, make sure all the video cameras were off, and everything. So, we knew that Michael was going to show up to the restaurant, so I had done my job as far as getting a private room. Michael showed up with the three children and was standing off at another room.
He sees me, and we hadn`t seen each other in a couple years, I guess. So, he saw me standing in the room. He yells out Mike, and he comes running over to me and gives me a big hug, asks me to come over and sit down with him because I had a private room for him. There was great -- you know, we talked about how good it was to see each other. And, then, I had asked him about him going off to Europe.
He says, yes, I`m going to go to London for the shows. And I said Michael, you`re skinnier than I`ve ever seen you. What`s going on? Put some meat on your bones. And he said that he lost a lot of weight because he was going through -- he was doing all the rehearsals for the "This Is It."
PINSKY: The stress and the preparation.
LA PERRUQUE: Right. Well, he was always a thin guy, anyway.
LA PERRUQUE: But I think -- like I said, this was the skinniest I`ve seen him or thinner side I`ve ever seen him. So --
PINSKY: Did you feel concern for him at that point? Did you think, oh my gosh, how`s he going to do this?
LA PERRUQUE: No, not at that time, because I knew he was strong.
LA PERRUQUE: No, I don`t think so. And we talked about a little bit later about the children and how they were doing. And then, I actually used a term that you coined. And I told him that, Michael, I have great affection for you, and I want you to know that no matter where you are in this world, no matter what time it is, whatever you`re doing if you need me, I will always be there for you. I don`t care what it is.
I`ll drop whatever I`m doing, and I will come see him -- or, I`ll come see you. And after that, he -- his head of security or his assistant came walking in, and he told the assistant, hey, get Mike`s number. Always keep Mike`s number with you no matter where we are. We may need him later. Always keep it with you. With that, I said, go on back to your party, and I`ll see you later. That was the last time I saw him.
PINSKY: I`m actually moved that you used that word affection, because that`s a very special kind of relationship with somebody like this when you feel that deep affection and you appreciate them as a person.
LA PERRUQUE: Exactly.
PINSKY: You`ve known him for a lot of years.
LA PERRUQUE: Yes, I started with him at the end of 2000, and I worked for him through 2004. And then, he asked me to come back to work for him in 2007 through 2008.
PINSKY: It`s kind of a special thing, because he`s not a cartoon character to you or the King of Pop. He`s a human being that you have real affection for you. Appreciate him as a person. And I want to get into that as we talk today. Let me ask you this. Where were you on June 25th, 2009, when you found out that Michael was dead?
LA PERRUQUE: I was at San Jose Airport. I was just finishing up a business meeting. And, I was at the airport, and then, all of a sudden, I heard -- you know, I saw a lot of people were starting to talk with each other and cell phones going off, and you know, you could definitely tell that there was some kind of a --
PINSKY: Something happened.
LA PERRUQUE: Some event that was happening that was catching everybody`s attention. And, then, I got a phone call from a person that I worked with on Michael`s detail, and she was very close with Michael. And she says well, Michael just had a heart attack. And I need you to meet me over at the hospital. And I, of course, said, well, of course, but I`m up here in San Jose. I`m about ready to jump on a flight.
As soon as I get down to Burbank Airport, I`ll, you know, get in my car and I`ll meet you over there. And, it was a few minutes after that that I guess another network had broke the news that he had died. And then, of course, there is quite a bit of hubbub in the airport.
PINSKY: Did you get to the emergency room?
LA PERRUQUE: I finally did towards the end of the day. Yes, I did. And, anyway, she had told me that, you know, Michael passed away on the phone. And, then, she says, you know, I can`t believe it. I refuse to believe it.
PINSKY: Did it surprise you? Did it really surprise you?
LA PERRUQUE: You know, yes. It surprised me.
PINSKY: You had just seen him. He looked ill. He didn`t look well. He had a lot of stress coming. We`re going to talk in a minute about the drug use that you did or didn`t see. So, but first, what I want to do is go to a recording. On the day Michael Jackson died, a security guard who, I guess, still works for you now, a guy named Alberto Alvarez?
LA PERRUQUE: Yes.
PINSKY: He made this 911 call from Jackson`s bedroom. Let`s listen.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He`s unconscious? He`s not breathing?
VOICE OF ALBERTO ALVAREZ, JACKSON`S FORMER BODYGUARD: Yes, he`s not breathing, sir.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: OK. And he`s not conscious either.
ALVAREZ: No. He`s not conscious, sir.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: OK. All right. Is he on the floor? Where is he at right now?
ALVAREZ: He`s on the bed, sir. He`s on the bed.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: OK. Let`s get him on the floor.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: OK. Let`s get him down to the floor. I`m going to help you with CPR right now, OK?
(END VIDEO CLIP)
PINSKY: And Mr. Alvarez still works for you to this day?
LA PERRUQUE: Yes.
PINSKY: How do you feel when you hear that phone call?
LA PERRUQUE: You know, it`s sort of chilling at the same time. I feel for Alberto, because I know him. And, he`s a really good guy.
PINSKY: Funny, you can kind of tell that. You can tell his real genuine concern, and he was doing his job.
LA PERRUQUE: He was doing his job, but if you can imagine, you know, the situation happening and how surreal it must be. And you have to -- as a protection agent, someone as protecting someone, you have a certain amount of duty and responsibility towards that person. And to realize that this person that you`re in charge of his care has, you know, passed away or something like that, especially at the magnitude of the popularity of Michael.
PINSKY: Does Alberto to this day feel guilt? Does he lay blame with Dr. Murray? I don`t want you to speak on his behalf, you can`t, but people in the room, how did they feel about what went down, I wonder.
LA PERRUQUE: I can`t answer that. And, I`ve had conversations with Alberto. And, not only does he work for me, but he is a personal friend of mine.
PINSKY: Maybe I`ll ask him to come and talk to us himself. Let me ask you this. Did you ever imagine that drugs would kill Michael Jackson?
LA PERRUQUE: No. You know, you want to hope for the best.
PINSKY: Impacting to that response, though, I suspect, is you did see him doing drugs or you were aware he was doing drugs.
LA PERRUQUE: I was aware that he was doing drugs.
PINSKY: Were you aware of the magnitude of the problem?
LA PERRUQUE: Yes.
PINSKY: And so, when you say you hope for the best, you hoped he didn`t die of it?
LA PERRUQUE: Of course.
PINSKY: Were you aware of his use of propofol?
LA PERRUQUE: No. I had never -- I never heard of the word propofol before. It came out after his passing.
PINSKY: And given -- I mean, for me -- I will just tell you, propofol used outside of a hospital was a bizarre. I mean, when I heard about that, it`s like really, like an asteroid hit outside my house or something. It`s like, what world does that happen? But OK. So, that was happening, and apparently, been happening for awhile, I guess. What are your thoughts in the charges against Conrad Murray? Do you have any?
LA PERRUQUE: Well, my personal thoughts would be that the charges are very -- they are the correct charges against (ph) regarding manslaughter charges. I don`t think that Conrad Murray would have any kind of predetermined thoughts to, you know, wanting to kill the King of Pop.
LA PERRUQUE: Premeditation.
PINSKY: How do you respond to some of the Jackson family like La Toya who say that Murray was just sort of the fall guy for a bigger guilty party? It`s sort of, you know, inadvertent murder like they were worked into doubt (ph) or something. It seems to be the implication.
LA PERRUQUE: Well, it would almost sound like it`s some kind of conspiracy.
LA PERRUQUE: And I don`t think that conspiracy was in there. I think that everybody deals with their own grieving process in a certain way. And, that you just don`t want to believe that, you know, for his family members that someone would do that or would need to take some kind of medication that would ultimately kill them.
PINSKY: In terms -- again, in speaking about his use of medication, the producers told me that you actually -- he would be so, I guess, intoxicated or affected by medication that, sometimes, you`d actually have to carry him out of meetings?
LA PERRUQUE: Yes. There were a few meeting a few times where he seemed to be under the influence of some kind of stimulant, and he would basically sit there and just pass out. So, I would have to walk in and stop the meeting. And then, basically, try to wake him up and then carry him into his room. And, I would unzip his boots, put him in bed, and then, for the next couple hours, I would just sit there and watch him just to make sure he was breathing.
PINSKY: Was there a doctor that you would call to come and to attend at that point?
LA PERRUQUE: No.
PINSKY: That seems strange to me.
LA PERRUQUE: He was being seen by physicians. And, I guess, because I had seen it so many times that I felt comfortable in just being able to watch him. And then, of course, if he has stopped breathing or if it did take a turn for the worse, then, of course, I would have called the 911.
PINSKY: Of course.
LA PERRUQUE: Not even (ph) waited for a doctor.
PINSKY: OK. Up next, as a part of Michael`s inner circle, Michael La Perruque also spent countless hours with Jackson`s children. So, we`re going to find out what Prince, Paris, and Blanket are really like and what kind of dad was the King of Pop. We`ll find that out next. Stay with us.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
PARIS JACKSON, MICHAEL JACKSON`S DAUGHTER: I just wanted to say ever since I was born, daddy has been the best father you could ever imagine.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
PINSKY: That really was just one of the saddest moments. That was Paris Jackson speaking at her father`s memorial service in July 2009. Michael La Perruque, he`s Jackson`s chief of security speaking (ph) over to me and said, you know, during that, none of us -- no one had a dry eye during that service. He, of course, was there. You spent a lot of time with Michael. What was he like as a dad?
LA PERRUQUE: He was an excellent father. You would not believe the extent that he would go to just to make sure that he provided a very normal life for his children.
PINSKY: So, they weren`t spoiled that they weren`t sent away to nannies? I understand each one had their own little team, isn`t that right?
LA PERRUQUE: No.
PINSKY: That`s what the rumor. Well, this is the part, you know, I`m trying to imagine what it`d be like to be a child and have Michael Jackson as your father. It`d be kind of peculiar.
LA PERRUQUE: I don`t think that there was that much of a -- the children never expressed like my daddy is Michael Jackson. It was just my daddy is daddy.
PINSKY: Now, again, I get that. That`s what I keep hearing is that they loved him as dad, and he was dad like anyone is just dad, but he was an unusual person. He didn`t seem like the kind of person to easily get close to. That that ever affect or was that a more natural role for him?
LA PERRUQUE: I think that was the role for him. I mean, his role as a father was probably more natural than his dancing and that was a God- given talent. So, I think that, you know, his raising the children and trying to just give them that unconditional love and gave that unconditional love back.
PINSKY: I actually did a fundraiser with him at Carnegie Hall for -- it was a children`s fundraiser. And he seemed to always be involved in children`s fundraising activities. And did any of that sort of -- and then the Peter Pan stuff and all -- did any of his sort of almost excessive preoccupation with children interfere with his parenting?
LA PERRUQUE: I don`t think so.
PINSKY: Didn`t get anything --
LA PERRUQUE: I never got that impression at all.
PINSKY: And tell us about Paris and Prince and Blanket. What are they like as kids?
LA PERRUQUE: Great kids. I mean, they just, you know, -- they love their father.
PINSKY: That is clear. I mean, that was so genuine. It`s so heartfelt.
LA PERRUQUE: Yes.
PINSKY: It`s like I can`t even think about it.
LA PERRUQUE: Yes. And, you know, Prince was always sort of the adult around with the other two children looking out after his sister and his younger brother. Blanket, we affectionately called him was always very quiet. And Paris, you can probably tell she`s going to be the stronger of all three of them.
PINSKY: Did they have normal peer relationships with other kids?
LA PERRUQUE: Oh, yes. There were always other kids around.
PINSKY: OK. And yet, their confidentiality was carefully maintained.
LA PERRUQUE: Of course.
PINSKY: Their identity was carefully protected. Was that him being paranoid or was that appropriate? I mean, you were the head of security. So, did you advise that kind of thing?
LA PERRUQUE: As a protection agent, you always want to take care of your principals, but then his children as well. And, you want to protect the children and protect the man himself. So, as part of that is that you`re always aware of the potential possible kidnapping. Michael wanted the children to be raised at that tender -- during those tender ages without the cameras in front of them, without any kind of publicity.
So, we want to make sure that if, like, sometimes I would take Paris out to the local park just so that she could, you know, play on the swings and go down the slides and I would stand there and watch her or push her on the swings so that they would maintain some sort of sense of normalcy.
PINSKY: Were you, guys, part of the decision to put stuff over their face, the masks and things?
LA PERRUQUE: It was instructed to us to make sure that whenever they went out publicly with Michael around, that they would have some kind of a mask which wrapped (ph) over their face.
PINSKY: I see. So, when they`re with him, they didn`t --
LA PERRUQUE: Yes.
PINSKY: I Oh, that`s very interesting. There was that one episode where he held the child over the balcony. Was that just a misadventure?
LA PERRUQUE: I think it was a misadventure. You have to -- you know, again, everybody was saw it from the camera view. And, I didn`t realize what happened until later on that day when I start hearing about everything, but, you know, it was like Michael was just -- he was caught up in the moment, and sometimes, you see fathers take their kids and throw them up in the air and try to catch him or catch them.
And he was just kind of like, he was in the moment and he was presenting his children because the crowds down below -- we had been at that hotel for numerous days. And there was -- they held it -- the fans held a 24-hour vigil. So, sometimes, you know, he would wave and the crowd would get --
PINSKY: I`ve seen what the fans do. They, like, throw themselves at it. It`s kind of wild.
LA PERRUQUE: It is.
PINSKY: But Mike, I`m going to ask you a tougher question. I know you have affection for him. You sure you didn`t drink the Kool-Aid?
LA PERRUQUE: No.
PINSKY: You know what I mean? Because we looked at that --
PINSKY: No. Not the (INAUDIBLE) juice, but the Kool-Aid. I saw that picture of him in the balcony, I though, that did not look good to me.
LA PERRUQUE: It didn`t look good to me either.
PINSKY: OK. All right. I just want to make sure we`re looking at the same footage.
LA PERRUQUE: We`re looking at the same footage, and yes, there was a definite concern. In fact, later on, I had to make sure that he didn`t do something additionally silly.
PINSKY: Did he do silly stuff like that?
LA PERRUQUE: Yes, he did. I mean, and that was sometimes his -- he was his own worst enemy that he would do things like irresponsibly not think about the consequences later on down the line.
PINSKY: So, himself being a little childlike.
LA PERRUQUE: Sometimes.
PINSKY: OK. Now, in 2005, jury selection began for the infamous Michael Jackson molestation trial. The entertainer was indicted on 14 counts including four counts of molesting a minor. Jackson maintained his innocence throughout and released this videotape statement to the media. Watch.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
MICHAEL JACKSON, ENTERTAINER: Years ago, I allowed a family to visit and spend time in Neverland. Neverland is my home. I allowed this family into my home because they told me their son was ill with cancer and needed my help. Through the years, I have helped thousands of children who were ill or in distress. These vents have caused a nightmare for my family, my children, and me.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
PINSKY: In June 2005, the jury found Jackson not guilty on all 14 charges. Mike, you have maintained throughout that he was innocent. You, guys, have chance to observe him with other children and other families. In fact, my understanding is you were almost always there.
LA PERRUQUE: Yes. I had total access. I was -- whenever he was leaving Neverland Ranch, that`s basically when I went into action. I was in charge of his travel team and then provided the protection dealing with whatever the event was, whether it was a public event or something along those lines. So, there was a lot of interaction with, you know --
PINSKY: Did you see him with this family that had --
PINSKY: The ones that had these allegations against him?
LA PERRUQUE: Yes. In fact, they came down to Florida, Miami, Florida, and spent two weeks with Michael just prior to him going back to Neverland Ranch.
PINSKY: All right. We have to wrap this up. Sorry to interrupt you, but you didn`t see any inappropriate?
LA PERRUQUE: No.
PINSKY: No, nothing even a hint of that trouble?
LA PERRUQUE: Not even a hit.
PINSKY: That`s what I understood you to say.
OK. Up next, did Michael Jackson really suffer from a skin condition called Vitiligo. And, did his nose fall? We`re going to talk to Mike La Perruque about the facts versus the fictions when we come back.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
(END VIDEO CLIP)
PINSKY: My special guest tonight served as Michael Jackson`s head of security. His name is Mike La Perruque. He was also Michael`s confidant. He knows about the truth versus the fiction. He knows about his skin condition, but before we start about his Vitiligo, you just link (ph) over to me again. I want to bring you back here. I`ve got a million more questions for you, but you said something about him trying to get away from the drugs. Tell me that again.
LA PERRUQUE: Yes. Michael worked very hard to try to get away from the drugs. I knew about him using certain prescription drugs, but he wanted to be clean. He did not like taking the medications. And, he was strongly against any kind of illegal narcotics. So, I know of two times that he worked hard working with doctors to try to get himself clean, sober, and away from the hard narcotics.
PINSKY: I tell you one of the most heartbreaking things I hear my peers tell patients sometimes is I know what`s good for you. I`m your doctor. Listen to me. You need these medicines. Did he ever hear that kind of stuff?
LA PERRUQUE: Yes. Unfortunately, yes.
PINSKY: OK. Look, Mike, I`ve got many more questions about how the doctors related to him and whether they would give you instructions or him instructions, but we`re running out of time here. Let`s get to the fact versus the fiction here. Vitiligo. Did he have Vitiligo and is that why he lightened his skin?
LA PERRUQUE: Yes. And here`s --
PINSKY: Vitiligo, by the way, is white patches. It is very pronounced on dark skinned people.
LA PERRUQUE: Yes. And you wouldn`t probably see him -- you probably wouldn`t know it, but if I got relate a story. I got called into his hotel room one day, and we were in his bedroom and he was talking about having rash on the back of his legs. So, he says it`s itchy, da-da-da-da, and while he was talking to me, all of a sudden, he just dropped his pajama bottoms.
And I started standing there just looking at him. And he`s talking about, you know, the rash on the back of his legs, and I started laughing. And he looked at me like, why are you laughing at me? You know, when I`m trying to tell you about my rash. And I said Michael, you just dropped your pants in front of me, you know --
PINSKY: And what`s he looked at?
LA PERRUQUE: And he`s standing in there with his tiny whitings (ph) on, but yes, on his leg, he had dark patches of skin.
PINSKY: Dark patches.
LA PERRUQUE: Yes.
PINSKY: Well, what`s interesting about that, that`s not Vitiligo. Dark patches what happen to dark skin`s people when they scratch, they hyperpigment. So, that goes against the Vitiligo theory. Interestingly, he did have some kind of skin problem, but all that scratching makes it get darker. It can also make it depigment, but darker, that`s opposite of Vitiligo.
Vitiligo is an autoimmune attack on the skin. So, we have to look into that a little more. How about this business about him having like major complications with plastic surgery like his nose fell off, which is, by the way, no such thing as that. Anything like that ever --
PINSKY: Any weird, major complications or anything that people we could set the record straight for?
LA PERRUQUE: Not that I saw.
PINSKY: I`ve got only 20 seconds. Why did he keep refusing to acknowledge he was having plastic surgery?
LA PERRUQUE: I don`t know.
PINSKY: That`s always seemed sad to me like he was hiding and ashamed -- I mean, he had a major, you know, burn. Were you with him during all the burn?
LA PERRUQUE: No. Not at all.
PINSKY: I have a whole bunch of more questions for you. Thank you, Michael. I do appreciate being with us. I hope you come back.
LA PERRUQUE: Thanks for having me.
PINSKY: All right. Now, guys, we`ve got another high-profile trial in about a month. I`m guessing many of you already made up your minds about Dr. Murray, about whether he`s guilty or not in the death of Michael Jackson, but take a beat (ph) here for a second, admit that after hearing what Michael`s long-time bodyguard told us tonight, you might be thinking twice about some those opinions you formed about Michael, about Michael as a father, about past allegations.
Now, it`s a matter of whom you`re going to believe, of course. Maybe, we should all stop and reserve judgment about dr. Murray until we hear what`s presented in court. And even then, a jury is going to decide, not us. We`ll be discussing it all right here, though, the evidences, the witnesses, the facts. HLN had got it all covered. Thank you all for watching tonight. See you next time.