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ANDERSON COOPER 360 DEGREES
Health Care Battle; New Motive in Florida Murders; Medical Double Standard?; Joe Jackson Alleges Foul Play in Michael Jackson's Death
Aired July 20, 2009 - 23:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
JOHN KING, CNN ANCHOR: Tonight, breaking news, shocking allegations by Michael Jackson's father telling Larry just moments ago his son was the victim of "foul play" and naming the people he blames for it.
We are looking closer at those allegations and taking it several steps beyond. Randy Kaye, who's been breaking Jackson stories almost daily, is working hard on these latest developments -- Randi.
RANDI KAYE, CNN CORRESPONDENT: It's quite an interview Larry King just had there, John, as you saw. Joe Jackson and family friend Leonard Rowe made a lot of allegations tonight. Again, calling Michael Jackson's death "foul play," saying he was controlled by the promoter of his upcoming concert; that promoter would be AEG.
They said Michael was not in control of his finances and was not allowed to make his own decisions and that he was being made to do more concerts than he had agreed to. He was being told to do that.
Well, we are digging here to set the record straight. And a couple of things you should know. AEG, the promoter, has always said Michael Jackson was healthy enough to go ahead with all of these shows. CEO Randy Phillips has said that right here on 360.
AEG told us just a couple of weeks ago that Michael Jackson had agreed to do 31 shows, not the 10 shows you heard from those two gentlemen tonight, and then agreed to do 50 because he, quote, "needed the money." That was from Randy Phillips.
When I interviewed Leonard Rowe, who you saw there tonight on "Larry King," just two weeks ago he told me that Jackson had asked him to call AEG and work out an easier concert schedule, spread out the shows a little bit more.
He said he did, called Randy Phillips, the CEO of AEG. But Phillips told us he never spoke to Leonard Rowe. Leonard Rowe said they actually spoke. We have been in touch with AEG tonight, and later in the show we will share their response to the accusations by Leonard Rowe and Joe Jackson.
We'll also update you on the latest turns in whether or not this is heading toward becoming a criminal investigation and tell you why Tito Jackson, MJ's older brother, Michael Jackson's older brother, thinks his doctor may be to blame -- John.
KING: It's the tragedy followed by a mess.
KAYE: Yes. A lot to make sense of here but we really do want to set the record straight, and we'll do that later on.
KING: Obviously see you a bit later. Randi Kaye thank you very much.
Now, President Obama's growing push for health care, reform the growing effort to stop it and rising doubts about how President Obama is handling the issue.
In a moment, David Gergen, who calls it all crucial to the Obama presidency, and the Republicans who seemed to agree and are trying to wound Mr. Obama by killing his plan.
Dr. Sanjay Gupta joins us as well, talking about your bottom line.
First though, Candy Crowley sets the stage.
CANDY CROWLEY, CNN SENIOR POLITICAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): They don't call it the bully pulpit for nothing.
BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: We can't afford the politics of delay and defeat when it comes to health care. Not this time and not now.
CROWLEY: Health care reform is a heavy lift weighted down by complex problems, competing interests, a $1 trillion price tag conservative Democrats in sticker shock and Republicans loaded for bear.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Does President Obama's health care plan represent socialism?
MICHAEL STEELE, CHAIRMAN, REPUBLICAN NATIONAL COMMITTEE: Yes, next question.
CROWLEY: So, for the third time in four days the president pushed urgently, sometimes combatively.
OBAMA: So let's fight our way through the politics of the moment. Let's pass reform by the end of this year.
CROWLEY: This Wednesday a news conference, Thursday the Cleveland clinic, et cetera.
ROBERT GIBBS, WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY: Many, many days, yes. I think obviously this is a crucial time for health care reform.
CROWLEY: Presidents don't work this hard when things are going well. They work this hard when something's in jeopardy, especially when that something is one of the crown jewels of your campaign.
OBAMA: I will finally keep the promise of affordable accessible health care for every single American.
CROWLEY: But when the campaign trail gives way to the nitty- gritty of policy, it takes a toll. The percentage of Americans who approve of the way the president is handling health care has dropped below 50 percent in an ABC/"Washington Post" poll: 49 percent approve; 44 percent disapprove. And that disapproval rate has jumped 15 points since April.
SEN. JIM DEMINT, (R) SOUTH CAROLINA: Americans aren't being fooled. And we are discovering the truth about his plan which includes rationed care, trillions in new costs and high taxes.
CROWLEY: The president and Senator DeMint are engaged in a cross town showdown of sorts. DeMint recently told conservative activists, "If we're able to stop Obama on this, it will be his Waterloo, it will break him."
OBAMA: Think about that this isn't about me. This isn't about politics.
CROWLEY: If Republicans were the only thing between him and reform the president could put his feet up. He can't because conservative Democrats are blocking at proposed new tax hikes to pay for reform and the $1 trillion price tag.
Then when an independent budget analysis showed leading health care proposals will increase the deficit and not provide promised savings, they freaked.
SEN. BEN NELSON, (D) NEBRASKA: I think it is a devastating blow.
OBAMA: Thank you very much for that.
CROWLEY: But probably not a fatal one.
(on camera): He won't get it all but the president will likely get enough of something to declare victory. In politics if you can't get all what you want, want what you get.
Candy Crowley, CNN, Washington.
KING: "Digging Deeper" now with senior political analyst David Gergen and 360 M.D. Sanjay Gupta.
David, you have legitimate policy disagreements among the Democrats. In the House they want to surtax on the rates in the senate the Finance Committee Chairman wants to tax health care benefits. The President has a different plan. How did this policy debate become such a political problem?
DAVID GERGEN, CNN SENIOR POLITICAL ANALYST: It is because it is enormously complex issue with the percent, 18 percent of the economy represented by health care. And the president essentially did not come forward with his own plan but left it to Congress.
And I think one of his problems now is while the public agrees with the president that the current system does not work, is unsustainable -- does not work in the long term, it's unsustainable -- they're also becoming so concerned that there are so many cooks in the kitchen that there is a sense that this is now being thrown together and people aren't quite sure that the recipe that's coming out is going to be one that they can swallow and it'll be any better than the current system.
KING: And so Sanjay, one of the major goals and the president says an imperative is you have to lower costs long term in the health care system.
Writing in "Newsweek" magazine this week, Senator Edward Kennedy tries to add his voice to the debate even though he's up in Massachusetts because of his own health issues. And Senator Kennedy says this about saving money, "To accomplish all of this we have to cut the costs of health care. For families who've seen health insurance premiums more than double from an average of less than $6,000 a year to nearly $13,000 since 1999, one of the most controversial features of reform is one of the most vital. It's been called the public plan."
That is where Republicans are zeroing in, Sanjay, on that public option. How would -- or would actually just put the question -- would a public option actually over time lower costs -- health care costs in the system?
DR. SANJAY GUPTA, CNN CHIEF MEDICAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, over time is probably the operative language there in the question you just asked. Probably not immediately, I think most people can sort of put together that if you're going to put more people on the -- and get more people insured it's going to cost more money at least initially.
There are some hopes and a couple of things worth pointing out. The hopes are that if you get a healthier population because of more prevention, more wellness, a changing of the incentives towards those things, over time health care costs as a whole should start to come down.
And I think, it's worth reminding people as well, John, that the uninsured don't simply cost nothing right now. The uninsured population still does access the health care system, does still utilize health resources. They have put a number on it, people will guess about $100 billion a year go towards taking care of the uninsured.
So that -- you can start to do the math there and see some potential savings, but again, over time, John and probably not in the immediate term.
KING: David, the president did an interview with Jim Lehrer of PBS tonight. And he was asked about the politics of this, about Republicans now openly saying they need to stop the president from getting this initiative done.
Now, I want you to listen a bit of how the president compared this debate to one you lived through 16 years ago.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
OBAMA: There is a certain portion of the Republican Party that spews this like they saw '93 and '94. The last time there was a major health reform effort they explicitly went after the Clintons, said we're not going to get this done. That went down. And the -- at least the history the way it's viewed here in Washington is that that's what helped defeat Democrats.
So, it was a pure political play. A show of strength by the Republicans that helped them regain the House.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
GERGEN: Well, John, there are some parallels. Back in '93 and '94 there were Republicans like Bob Dole who were prepared to sign a bipartisan -- and work out a bipartisan solution, that fell apart over time. And Republicans then gathered in opposition and indeed it did help defeat the health care effort at that time.
But the danger for President Obama now is -- that there is another parallel. And that is -- that the Clinton plan started out as very popular but over time the support for it crumbled in the public. And the danger for the president now is the support is beginning to crumble for the overall effort.
KING: And Sanjay, every time there's a big initiative in Washington that costs money they talk about going after waste, fraud and abuse. And the health care debate is no different.
They say there's all this wasteful spending in the system. And if you can squeeze it out you helped pay for the reform simply by doing that. Is that true?
GUPTA: Well, this is where medicine gets into a little bit more of the art part of it than the science part. But the answer is yes. There is -- I'm convinces inefficiencies in the health system. I'm a doctor. I was in the operating room today.
There's inefficiencies in most hospitals. Exactly, why those inefficiencies occur and what you can do about it is a little bit more complicated.
For example, there's a lot of tests that are ordered, many of which are probably not necessary. Why are those tests being ordered? Is it because of a doctors lining their coffers that with more or is it because of defensive medicine?
Ask different groups you'll get different answers on that. Also this idea of what's known as comparative effectiveness. I'll make it simple. When you do a certain procedure is it going lead to a better, longer life for the patient? Despite how technologically sophisticate we are John, sometimes it's hard to answer that question. Just because we do this test, just because we do a certain procedure, does it make a difference? Remarkably we still don't know the answer to that. Answering some of those questions could make us a more efficient system -- John.
KING: Helping us "dig deeper," Dr. Gupta and David Gergen, thank you both.
GERGEN: Thank you.
GUPTA: Thank you.
KING: As always there's a lot more online at AC360.com, including a link for an organization arranging free health care for the needy Americans who don't have insurance.
And while you are there, let us know what you think. You'll also see an explanation for this little puffiness -- nobody landed a punch, just some odd allergic reaction. The live chat is underway right now.
Later, Dr. Gupta is back with a man whose paper cut turned into a life threatening condition. Did he get lousy treatment because of the color of his skin?
Sanjay asked the tough questions and we've got some eye opening answers. We're "Keeping them Honest."
Also, the surprise is high between murder victim Byrd Billings and one of his alleged killers. And why money changed hands between the two.
Later, 40 years later, that giant leap for mankind as it happened and as many people have never seen it before.
KING: New developments tonight in the murder of the Florida couple who adopted 13 children. Authorities say they've recovered a briefcase taken from the home of Melanie and Byrd Billings. They also believe the alleged mastermind behind the attack knew Mr. Billings.
And there are reports that the police may be looking at another motive other than robbery.
As the new details emerge a daughter of one of the victims -- excuse me -- can't understand why her parents were killed.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ASHLEY MARKHAM, DAUGHTER OF THE BILLINGS: There shouldn't be anybody in the world who has that kind of hate to do something to anybody. I don't believe that anybody would deserve what's happened. They're wonderful people and I can't imagine somebody having that magnitude of hate in their life.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
KING: Escambia County Sheriff David Morgan is leading the criminal investigation. And Sheriff Morgan joins us now from Pensacola.
Sheriff, you believe a second motive other than robbery. And you even raised the possibility today that this could have been a contract hit. Explain.
SHERIFF DAVID MORGAN, ESCAMBIA COUNTY, FLORIDA: No, sir. That was not a possibility that I raised. What I stated when asked that question was this investigation continues, and we're not taking any motive, if you will, off the table.
This investigation will lead where it leads. That was -- I believe come out in one of the local papers. One of our local reporters stated that he had information and informants that had informed him of that. That's not something that was out of the Escambia County Sheriff's office.
KING: Well, you say you'll take the investigation where it leads you. But you can't rule that out?
MORGAN: That is a true statement, sir. The investigation continues. We have new individuals that we are interviewing. We again have three persons of interest that we're still interviewing.
So it, again, for me to speculate it'll go in that direction would be purely that, speculation. But as we get deeper into this investigation, it gets more strange, sadly, and we seem to be coming up with as many questions as we have answers.
KING: Well, let's try to answer some of them. We found out in court documents released today that Mr. Billings gave some financial support to one of his alleged killers, Leonard Patrick Gonzalez Jr., apparently for the opening of a martial arts studio.
Do you know how far back that relationship goes? And is that financial relationship, did it have anything to do and how does it help you with your investigation?
MORGAN: Well, as we understand that was within a year, I believe. I have not read those documents. My staff briefed me on it today, again because they are currently working with the state attorney's office to get all of our documents and evidence together in preparation for the grand jury.
But as to the best of my recollection that was within a year ago that he helped finance the opening of a martial arts school for Mr. Gonzalez Jr.
KING: Is it a possibility that the focus of the investigation, the possibility that Mr. Gonzalez had a debt that he was unwilling or unable to pay, and perhaps the murder was related to that?
MORGAN: We have yet to determine that. Again, as I've stated to many people many times, we're not investigating the Billings family. We're investigating those subjects that we currently have incarcerated.
So the investigation may, in fact, lead to that because we will be asking those questions, was the debt that he made ever satisfied. But again, our focus is on Mr. Gonzalez not on the Byrd family.
KING: Gonzalez's wife, Tabitha, reached out to investigators. And today, you interviewed her. Anything valuable gained from that conversation, sir?
MORGAN: As I understand, the interview went very well with Mrs. Gonzalez, and again, our investigators just wanted to speak to her about some timelines and to clear up just a few areas. And that she did it voluntarily.
As I understand the interview went very well and to the best of my knowledge she is back in home with her children tonight.
KING: You mentioned your focus is not the Billings family, sir. But the Associated Press reported that Mr. Billings did have some questionable elements in his past, including once owning a strip club, once getting two years probation for an adoption scam. Is there anything in his past or anyone in his past that is coming into your investigation?
MORGAN: Well, that's a pretty broad swath you just cut there about people that come into his past. We will most assuredly be looking at any business partners that Mr. Billings had. And of course, we'll coordinate some of these efforts with the Billings family to verify those facts and if there was any confrontations with prior business owners.
Because again, we are developing this case as we go along. So again, just like with the allegations if you will that were released today by one of our local papers, we don't take anything off the table.
But as I try to remind folks, in my business -- I'm not about speculation. We're about facts and fact-based and that's where our investigation has to go.
So, while it's good to have roundtable discussions and everybody more or less postulate their theory on why the Billings family met such a horrible demise, that's not something that I can involve myself in.
KING: I understand that, sir. Sheriff David Morgan, thanks for your time and patience tonight, take care.
MORGAN: You're welcome, sir.
KING: Thank you.
Straight ahead tonight: a fire, a rescue with three people alive because of it including two young children. You'll hear how heroes are made.
And Joe Jackson, he said his son was the victim of "foul play." He named names. What do those names have to do about it and what do the facts say? Randi Kaye is back with an update ahead on 360.
KING: Most people would agree our country's health care system is broken. But is it racist? 360 MD Sanjay Gupta investigates allegations that hospitals treat black and white patients differently.
We're "Keeping them Honest" coming up.
First though, Randy Kaye joins us with the "360 Bulletin."
KAYE: Thanks John. We do have some other news for you tonight.
The top cop tracking the $750 billion TARP program says he is concerned federal officials mostly of the Treasury Department are ignoring his proposals for preventing tax dollars from being wasted or pilfered. Neil Barofsky lists his concerns in a 260-page report just released today. And he'll be here tomorrow night to talk about it in an "Exclusive 360" interview.
The task force looking into how suspected terrorists being held at Guantanamo Bay should be prosecuted will have a little more time it turns out to finish its work. The Department of Justice has extended the group's deadline to submit its final report by six months.
The lone surviving gunman in the Mumbai attacks pleaded guilty to his role in the shooting rampage that left 166 people dead. The confession is a boost to India's claims that terrorist groups in Pakistan were behind the November attack.
Black scholar Henry Lewis Gates Jr. is accusing Cambridge police of racism after he was arrested while trying to get into his locked home near Harvard University. Police say they were called to the home Thursday afternoon after a woman reported seeing a man trying to pry open the front door.
According to the police report, Gates refused to identify himself, called an officer racist and said quote, "This is what happens to black men in America." Gate's colleagues say he is the victim of racial profiling.
Professor Gates is part of our "BLACK IN AMERICA" special report; that is Wednesday and Thursday night. You do not want to miss that.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: There is a baby in there.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
KAYE: And a dramatic rescue in Milwaukee. A mother and her two young children pulled from their burning SUV. The woman and her 2- year-old daughter were saved first. Her 4-year-old son was trapped inside and rescued by two off-duty firefighters who are also brothers; amazing rescue there -- John.
KING: Wow. That is amazing.
KING: Remarkable, remarkable. Thank you, Randi.
Next on 360: "Health Care and Race in America." Are African- American patients getting the same level of care as white patients? Dr. Sanjay Gupta investigates.
Then later, first the conviction and now the public apology, Singer Chris Brown says he's sorry for assaulting his ex-girlfriend Rihanna. The video, his words, ahead.
KING: As President Obama pushes to overhaul the nation's health care system, some Americans say the problem isn't just getting the right care. They say its racism. There have been charges and lawsuits saying hospitals do not treat white and African-American patients the same.
The allegations are, of course, disturbing. But are they true? "Keeping them Honest," 360's Dr. Sanjay Gupta went looking for answers.
GUPTA (voice-over): The Reverend Gary Spears is the organist at this church in the southwest Bronx, Cosmopolitan AME. A few years ago something happened to him, something he couldn't explain. He was scared.
REV. GARY SPEARS, CHURCH ORGANIST: I received a paper cut, and it became very badly infected.
GUPTA (on camera): So, over a period of months lost over 80 pounds, became nauseated at the sight of food, you lost your energy, you're urinating every 20 minutes, and you had a paper cut that turned into a -- it sounds like full-fledged infection.
GUPTA: And they said?
SPEARS: Change the gauze, take the antibiotic, you will be fine.
GUPTA: Spears went to an emergency room. Not once but twice. And both times he was sent to an outpatient clinic run by the hospital. He never got a diagnosis. He never got a single test.
And as I'll tell you in a moment, what happened to Gary Spears should never happen to anyone. One thing about New York, it's famous for its hospitals. Sheikhs, kings, the rich and famous come here in search of the best medical care. But many of the people in New York's poorest neighborhoods say their experience is different.
NISHA AGARWAL, N.Y. LAWYERS FOR THE PUBLIC INTEREST: You literally have two separate systems of health care operating within the same hospital. Patients with Medicaid are sent to what are called the hospital clinics for their specialty care and privately insured patients are sent to what are called faculty practices.
GUPTA: Nisha Agarwal says the quality of care in the two settings is not equal. Agarwal is lead attorney for a grassroots group Bronx Health Reach.
In a legal complaint filed last year with the State of New York, they accused three large New York hospitals -- Montefiore, New York Presbyterian and Mount Sinai -- of discrimination based on insurance status and race.
The complaint targets clinics for diabetes and heart disease. Both of those are illnesses that have an out-sized impact on African- Americans. It's specifically says, the hospital clinics for patients on Medicaid or with no insurance are overcrowded and second rate.
AGARWAL: When you look at the demographics of the Medicaid population in New York City and New York State, when you're doing the separation based on insurance you are effectively segregating people based on race.
GUPTA: Is that really fair? Is insurance really a good indicator of race.
Here is a number that caught my eye. In the Bronx there are 19 times as many African-Americans and Latinos on Medicaid as compared to whites.
The New York attorney general's office opened an investigation but won't tell us where it stands. The hospitals named in the complaint all referred us to the Greater New York Hospital Association.
A spokesman there said it's unfair to blame hospitals for the black and white health gap. In a written statement he says the outpatient clinics offer care for the poor quote, "Where it otherwise not exist."
Dr. Neil Calman, runs a large practice in the Bronx. He say, health varies widely by race.
DR. NEIL CALMAN, PRESIDENT AND CEO, INSTITUTE FOR FAMILY HEALTH: If you walked into the nursery of a hospital and there was a black baby and a white baby who had been born on the same day, that you could bet that the black baby was going to live eight years less long than the white baby.
GUPTA: The clinic system, he says, not good enough.
CALMAN: What you end up with is people getting completely different types of care. You end up with one system with people with experienced doctors and another system where people are treated by rotating trainees. And one system with good communication back to people's primary care doctors. And then another system with no communication back to people's primary care doctors.
GUPTA: The church organist, Gary Spears, is not part of the complaint. But he was feeling lost, with a terrible illness ravaging his hand and his whole body.
(on camera): So, for months, you had been searching for an answer. He finally gave it to you. What did you think?
GARY SPEARS, CHURCH ORGANIST: I was amazed.
GUPTA: Were you angry?
SPEARS: I was just shocked.
KING: Next, part two of Sanjay's investigation -- we will reveal what illness plagued Reverend Spears and why he says it went undiscovered for so long.
Also tonight: Joe Jackson speaking out on his son's death, and making shocking allegations.
KING: There are millions of Americans being denied good medical care because of the color of their skin. Tonight we're taking a close look at claims of discrimination in the doctor's office and whether the allegations are founded or false.
We're "Keeping Them Honest." Once, again, here is Dr. Sanjay Gupta.
GUPTA: Gary Spears was confused and afraid, a festering infection in his hand, chills, sweats, massive weight loss. His hand simply wouldn't heal.
To the doctors he had been sent to at outpatient clinics, it was a mystery, but not to Dr. Neil Calman.
By pure chance he ran into Gary Spears at the office where Spears worked. He says he knew the diagnosis instantly. Gary Spears had a severe case of untreated diabetes, and a simple blood test confirmed it.
SPEARS: Immediately, he began to run tests and told me for the first time that I was a diabetic. And that the reason why my body was not healing was because I was a diabetic, and I had to get my glucose numbers under control.
GUPTA: Spears had medical insurance and thought he had good care. So, he wondered why his illness had gone untreated for so long.
SPEARS: I believe now, after, you know, many years after this happening, that it had to be because of my color, the color of my skin.
GUPTA (on camera): Because you are black?
SPEARS: Yes. They did not take that extra step to give me the medical care that I deserve and was entitled to as a human being.
GUPTA (voice-over): Dr. Neil Calman says it is a pattern, and not just in New York.
CALMAN: It has been absolutely proven through studies that a black man and white man going to the hospital with exactly the same complaint will be treated differently. That has been shown through study after study.
GUPTA: In one of those studies, cardiologists were shown tapes of people complaining about identical symptoms, the same symptoms, and yet the doctors were more likely to order additional tests for the white patients.
(on camera): No question the differences between medical care and health is very different between blacks and whites. The real question is why.
I'll tell you, it is complicated. I mean, there are insurance issues, there are economic differences, there is even the physical environment. But if you scratch just below the surface you find that race is on a lot of people's minds.
(voice-over): I sat down with Gary Spears and two others who wanted to tell me about their experience with outpatient, hospital-run clinics. Long wait times, they said, no regular doctor.
But there was something more, something personal.
(on camera): How many of you believe the health care system, the way it is now, is racist?
It is stunning to hear that. I think that maybe you think about people waiting longer in clinics or seeing different doctors each time, but to say that it's racist is a pretty remarkable thing.
REV. TIMOTHY BIRKETT, CHURCH ALIVE DEVELOPMENT CENTER: I'm amazed when I ask my congregation and groups that we have, how many of you felt that you were not treated correctly? And hands go up.
GUPTA: Because of the color of their skin?
BIRKETT: Yes. GUPTA (voice-over): The Reverend Robert Foley is the pastor at New York Cosmopolitan Church. He is an outspoken voice on health issues.
At first, he didn't want to talk about race. His goal: equal better care for everyone, especially the poor and uninsured. But you can't ignore race, and it turns out he has a story, too.
REV. ROBERT FOLEY, COSMOPOLITAN AME CHURCH: I had an experience with regards to my late wife.
GUPTA: His wife had a pain in her side. Her doctors played it down until it was too late -- ovarian cancer and just 18 months to live.
FOLEY: That always bewildered me, you know, why -- how could this happen, and why did it happen?
When you have this color skin, and you run into situations that are inexplicable to you, that don't seem to be reasonable, it makes you wonder what is generating this. It does.
GUPTA: Gary Spears is now back at the church organ. He was in that similar situation.
We now know what he thinks about it -- he suffered too much and for too long just because he is black.
Dr. Sanjay Gupta, CNN, New York.
KING: This week, a new chapter in an epic CNN report, "BLACK IN AMERICA II: THE STRUGGLE, THE SOLUTIONS AND THE NEW CHALLENGES." Watch this groundbreaking special this Wednesday and Thursday night.
And up next, in his own words: Joe Jackson. The father of Michael Jackson speaks to CNN tonight and talks about foul play in his son's death.
Randi Kaye joins us with that and more, much more.
And later, Chris Brown asking for forgiveness -- his on-camera apology for attacking Rihanna when 360 continues.
KING: In an explosive interview, Michael Jackson's father told Larry King tonight he believes foul play led to his son's death.
Joe Jackson also said Michael Jackson was being controlled by the promoters of his London concerts.
Hear Joe Jackson "In His Own Words" in just a moment.
But first: the latest in the investigation. Randi Kaye joins us now.
Randi, the autopsy, toxicology results not made public yet. But there is already plenty talking about possible criminal charges. What's going on?
KAYE: Absolutely. This has been going on for weeks, really, whether or not somebody would be charged in this case, possibly with criminal charges.
The "L.A. Times" quoting a senior law enforcement official is reporting that Michael Jackson's death will likely not result in murder charges against any of his former doctors.
We've confirmed independently, investigators are working their way down a list of Jackson's doctors, trying to figure out who prescribed what, when, and whether or not any of these drugs were prescribed under false names. They also want to know if any of these drugs may have contributed to his death.
I spoke to the D.A.'s office again today asking about possible murder charges or criminal charges, and was told, quote, "It is all speculation." I was told the case has not been presented to the district attorney to consider charges, and that there is no telling when that might happen.
All of this, of course, comes in the wake of La Toya Jackson, Michael Jackson's sister, telling a London newspaper her brother was, quote, "murdered," and the singer's father, Joe Jackson, again we heard tonight on "LARRY KING" suggesting there was foul play here.
The problem with charges in a case like this is that it seems Jackson was getting so many different drugs from so many different doctors, so it actually may be hard to prosecute since one doctor may not have known Jackson was doctor shopping, which sources have told us he was. The doctors may not have known what else he was taking.
But the bottom line here, Deputy Coroner Ed Winter, who is also the chief investigator in the case, has said they are not investigating doctors. They are investigating a death -- very important clarification there -- John.
KING: So then, let's add Tito Jackson to the conversation. What about the comments he made to a London tabloid about Jackson's doctor?
KAYE: We are talking about his personal physician, Dr. Conrad Murray, who has said he tried to give the singer CPR after he stopped breathing. He was at the house that day.
We've confirmed Dr. Murray has been interviewed twice by investigators. His car was seized and then returned. But his lawyer says he is not considered a suspect, only a witness.
Meanwhile, "The Sun" newspaper in London says it interviewed Tito Jackson, Michael Jackson's older brother. And in speaking about Dr. Murray, the paper says Tito said, "My opinion is that he panicked when my brother didn't wake up. I think the doctor probably figured there could be trouble. He tried to revive Michael. I believe if he had immediately called for help we might still have my brother here today. He would definitely still be alive."
So, we called Dr. Murray's office to get a comment about this, and we're told they do not want to speak out against the Jackson family right now considering their loss. A spokeswoman for Dr. Murray's lawyer told us, quote, "We are going to continue to cooperate with investigators and do whatever we can to help investigator's come up with a solution as to what killed Michael Jackson."
And finally, I wanted to get back to that back and forth between Jackson's father, Joe Jackson and his friend Leonard Rowe, which you saw on "LARRY KING" tonight.
They told Larry King tonight that the promoter for what would have been Jackson's final tour forced him into a grueling schedule and would not back down.
As I said earlier, we were digging to get to the bottom of this. AEG told me two weeks ago that Jackson had agreed to 31 shows, and then agreed to do the 50 shows because he, quote, "needed the money."
Tonight we got a statement from AEG and it reads in part, "Whether Michael Jackson would be doing one show or 50, the rehearsal preparation and schedule would have been exactly the same. He always had the option to change his schedule or miss a rehearsal, and did indeed decide to miss certain days he had previously committed to. The show's schedule was based on his schedule."
That is coming from AEG, the promoter, tonight.
Jackson family friend Leonard Rowe told me more than a week ago Michael Jackson did not want to do so many shows, just didn't want to work that hard. So clearly, the two sides still don't see eye to eye on this -- John.
KING: Clearly they don't. And well, you can understand the family's grief. One gets the impression those investigating this would rather the family not speak out so much.
KAYE: I think so.
KING: All right, Randi Kaye, thanks so much tonight. That's a lot of reporting.
And now more on the explosive allegations from Michael Jackson's father. Joe Jackson told Larry King tonight his son's death was no accident. And he is blaming everyone from Michael Jackson's personal doctor to the company producing those planned London concerts.
Here is Joe Jackson "In His Own Words."
LARRY KING, CNN HOST, "LARRY KING LIVE": How did you learn of Michael's passing?
JOE JACKSON, MICHAEL JACKSON'S FATHER: Well, I learned that by some of the fans, you know. They called me and they told me that the ambulance was leaving Michael's house, like it's headed towards the hospital.
L. KING: How are you doing? It is four weeks later. Is it any easier?
JACKSON: Well, you know, I took it very hard but, you know, I'm sort of a tough person myself. But I took it very hard. But I didn't let nobody know about it. Yes.
L. KING: Did you get a chance to say goodbye?
JACKSON: Yes. I said goodbye to him when he was up, well, when he was up there in front of us. I said, "I'm saying goodbye to him now." What others say, that's what they say.
What I'm saying is I do feel the loss of my son, Michael Jackson, who was an international star all over the world.
L. KING: But you didn't get to see the body or say anything...
JACKSON: No, I did not.
L. KING: ... to the remains?
JACKSON: No, I did not.
L. KING: Do you wish you could have?
JACKSON: I could have. But I wanted to see Michael -- I wanted to remember Michael alive because I didn't want to see him laying up in a casket.
L. KING: Are you surprised, Joe, you were left out of the will?
JACKSON: Well, I wasn't too surprised, because, you know, that's what the way he wanted it. And it is not going to hurt me that I was left out of the will. It happened.
L. KING: I know you are denying the stories about violence. As you look at it, were there any mistakes you made?
JACKSON: I didn't make no mistakes, Larry, because Michael was raised properly. He didn't run the streets like most of those other kids that was in his neighborhood.
L. KING: Why did he say you were...
JACKSON: Listen, listen, now. You have to understand me. Don't cut me off here, Larry. Michael claims that he had a dull life. Michael never had that. He had his own brothers and sisters to play with. But most of those kids that was Michael's age during that time, they are not living now. L. KING: You never physically harmed him?
JACKSON: Never. Never have. I raised him just like you would raise your kids, you know. But harm Michael for what? That is my son. I loved him. And I still love him.
J. KING: With more on the investigation into Michael Jackson's death and the legal fight for his children, we are joined by CNN legal analyst Lisa Bloom.
Lisa, despite what we've heard from Joe Jackson saying he still believes this is a case of "foul play," Randi just reported the police say there is nothing to suggest murder right now. Homicide is different from murder, still in the cards maybe?
LISA BLOOM, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Absolutely. Absolutely. You have to listen to that statement very carefully. Murder is the intentional, premeditated killing of another human being. I don't think anyone is suggesting somebody intentionally took Michael Jackson's life.
The question is was there an unintentional killing, a negligent homicide by, for example, a doctor who may have administered a medication knowing it could cause serious bodily injury or death but did it because Michael Jackson insisted. That doctor could be subjected to a homicide charge.
But more likely what we might see if there is a criminal charge of some kind would be what we saw in the Anna Nicole case, giving medication to a known addict, allowing a false name to be put on a prescription. Those are much lower level charges that could be lobbied against some of these doctors.
J. KING: And so as you hear these potential charges being tossed around and speculation, even if there is nothing to suggest homicide right now, what is the general track record for how long these cases play out? Meaning, should we know the answer to whether there will be such a charge shortly, or can these drag on for months or perhaps a year or more?
BLOOM: John, what I think is once we get those toxicology results we are going to know what was in Michael Jackson's system, and that's going to drive the criminal investigation.
In fact, law enforcement may already know the answer to that. It's just that we in the public don't know. If Propofol is found in Michael Jackson's system, that's a medication that is supposed to be administered by an anesthesiologist. That's something that Michael Jackson could not have administered to himself, then I think it's highly likely we are going to see some kind of criminal charges, but probably not homicide, again.
By the way, the charges against the promoter that we've heard some of the Jackson family members claim, that's extremely unlikely. Michael Jackson was an adult. He was well-represented by attorneys, agents, managers, publicists; everything possible available to him. It's an arm's length agreement.
If he entered into an agreement that was too much for him, he could have changed it. And so, certainly, I don't see any kind of civil or criminal charges against the concert promoter.
J. KING: The other big story is the custody hearing was scheduled today. That was delayed for a second time again. And at the same time there are reports that Janet Jackson and her sister Rebbie are perhaps interested somehow in raising Michael's children. What do you make of this?
BLOOM: Well, as an attorney, when a hearing is put off twice that tells me one thing -- settlement negotiations are in the works and are highly likely. That neither side really wants to see a custody fight here, which I think most of us think is probably a good thing if this can be resolved.
So I would expect that behind the scenes, Debbie Rowe and her attorney is getting together with Michael Jackson's family and their attorneys and trying to put this thing to rest and avoid an ugly custody battle.
J.KING: Lisa Bloom thanks.
BLOOM: Thank you.
J. KING: You take care.
Up next, breaking news on California's budget mess, $26 billion worth.
Also, singer Chris Brown breaks his silence. See his emotional apology to Rihanna and his fans.
Plus, we'll show you Neil Armstrong's giant leap for mankind exactly 40 years after it happened. It's our "Shot of the Day coming up on 360.
J. KING: Forty years ago tonight Neil Armstrong took one giant leap for mankind and kept on walking. See his historic moonwalk 40 years ago, almost exactly to the minute, if I stop talking in time. It's our "Shot of the Day."
First, though, Randi Kaye is back with the 360 bulletin, and at the top of it, some breaking news.
KAYE: Absolutely, John. Breaking news out of California, in fact, Governor Schwarzenegger and top state lawmakers reach an agreement on closing the state's $26 billion budget shortfall. The governor's spokesman saying it needs to be put on paper and to a vote, but that a deal is in place. Chris Brown is publicly apologizing for the beating of Rihanna. Brown speaks to fans directly in a two-minute video released today on his Web site.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
CHRIS BROWN, SINGER: I thought it was time you heard directly from me that I am sorry. I have tried to live my life in a way that can make those around me proud of me, and until recently I think I was doing a pretty good job.
I wish I had that chance to live those few moments again, but unfortunately I can't. I cannot go into what happened and most importantly I'm not going to make any excuses. I take great pride in me being able to exercise self-control and what I did was inexcusable.
I am very sad and very ashamed of what I have done. My mother and my spiritual teachers have taught me way better than that.
I have told Rihanna countless times, and I'm telling you today that I am truly, truly sorry and that I wasn't able to handle the situation both differently and better.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
KAYE: Suspended NFL star Michael Vick is a free man tonight. Vick's federal sentence for dogfighting ended today. He no longer has to wear an electronic monitor and is free to step up his efforts to resume his pro football career.
The Beastie Boys have canceled their concerts and delayed the release of their next album while one of the group's members battles cancer. Adam Yauch told fans in a video he has a cancerous tumor in a salivary gland.
And "American Idol" fans may see a big change next season. Paula Abdul's manager told the "L.A. Times" it does not appear she will return to the show. He says Abdul has not received a contract proposal from the show's producers. A Fox spokesperson says the network won't comment on her contract. Meanwhile, her fans are flooding Twitter with messages of support.
And Ryan Seacrest, who just signed a $45 million deal, Twittered he can't imagine doing the show without her; such drama at "Idol."
KING: Drama -- do you want to be a judge?
KAYE: No. I'm very busy in this hour.
J. KING: You are very busy. And we wouldn't let you go.
Up next, the man who walked on the moon 40 years ago tonight: We're just minutes away from the anniversary of the moment Neil Armstrong took that historic step. Relive the moment in our "Shot of the Day."
J. KING: For "The Shot" that one small step and giant leap. It happened 40 years ago tonight at 10:56 p.m. Eastern on July 20, 1969, Apollo 11 astronaut Neil Armstrong set foot on the moon. At that moment the entire world witnessed one of the greatest achievements of all time. Take a peek.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The Eagle has landed.
ARMSTRONG: That's one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: There you go.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Oh, geez, that is great. Is the lighting halfway decent?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes indeed. They have the flag up and you can see the stars and stripes.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
J. KING: I had my Apollo model kit. Every kid wanted to be an astronaut then.
KAYE: I can just see you with that. I love that they were worried about the lighting, making sure the shot came out.
It's pretty incredible stuff. I can't believe it has been 40 years.
J. KING: It's numbing that it's 40 years.
KAYE: And look how far they have come.
J. KING: It is amazing. The big debate is, of course, whether to go back.
J. KING: Whether to go back and whether to spend that money.
It is amazing to look at those pictures, as always.
That does it for this edition of 360. Thanks for watching.
"LARRY KING" starts right now.