Michael Jackson doctor trial jury selection begins Thursday

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Dr. Conrad Murray sits in court at his arraignment in January 2011 at Superior Court in Los Angeles, California. Murray is charged with involuntary manslaughter in the death of pop star Michael Jackson.

The judge in the trial of "King of Pop" Michael Jackson’s doctor says jury selection starts in two days — unless an appeals court holds things up.

You know the case — Dr. Conrad Murray is on trial for involuntary manslaughter. Prosecutors say the Texas physician gave Jackson a fatal dose of a strong sedative, and violated medical guidelines to do it.

The fact that you know that and more about the case is one of the legal twists. Murray’s defense lawyers say this trial, which should last about five weeks, will generate attention like nothing since OJ. They want its jury sequestered as the jury was in the OJ Simpson murder trial.

But they couldn’t get LA Superior Court Judge Michael Pastor to go along, so they filed an appeal. Now the judge has taken that into account; he’ll start jury selection on Thursday, unless the appeals court stops him while it considers the sequester request.

If that doesn’t happen, potential jurors will fill out what the judge calls an “exhaustive” questionnaire. The judge, the prosecutors and Murray’s lawyers will use that, plus their own questions, to cut down the jury pool.

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