Michael Jackson's doctor Conrad Murray won't testify in his defense

Conrad Murray

Reed Saxon, Pool/AP

Dr. Conrad Murray during his involuntary manslaughter trial in Los Angeles, Friday, Oct. 21, 2011. Murray has pleaded not guilty and faces four years in prison and the loss of his medical license if convicted of involuntary manslaughter in Michael Jackson's death.

Testimony ended Tuesday in the involuntary manslaughter trial of Michael Jackson's personal physician.

Defense attorneys and prosecutors said they called their final witnesses after 22 days of testimony. The final witnesses presented to jurors were a pair of anesthesia experts who had different theories on how Jackson died unexpectedly on June 25, 2009.

The panel did not hear from defendant Dr. Conrad Murray, who told a judge he would not testify in his own defense.

"My decision is that I will not testify in this matter," Murray told the judge Tuesday, outside the presence of jurors.

The cardiologist at the heart of the case had indicated previously to presiding judge Michael Pastor that he hadn't decided whether to take the witness stand in his defense. The judge had advised Murray of his constitutional rights to testify or to remain silent.

On the stand, several of Murray's patients praised his skill and compassion. Expert witnesses for the defense have tried to impart a reasonable doubt that he administered a powerful sedative that led to Michael Jackson’s death.

All of that countered prosecutors’ assertion that Murray acted with criminal negligence by using the sedative propofol in a non-hospital setting. But during cross-examination a retired anesthesiologist who’d testified for the defense told jurors that he wouldn’t have taken money to administer that drug to the performer in his home.

That statement, apparently based on a private conversation with Murray, risked a contempt of court citation and a $1,000 fine. The judge has scheduled a Nov. 16 hearing on that matter.

Murray faces up to four years in prison and the loss of his medical license if convicted.

This story has been updated and incorporates information from the Associated Press and other wire services.

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