On eve of £26bn unlawful death trial, tragic star’s aide talks to Sun
MICHAEL JACKSON predicted his own death weeks before his fatal overdose – even saying final farewells to friends, a confidante has revealed.
But the drug-addled singer expected to be SHOT, according to close pal Jason Pfeiffer.
Jason, who worked for Jacko’s dermatologist, said: “The last time I saw him he ways saying his goodbyes to everyone in the office.
“It was like he knew he was never coming back, and he would often say he thought he was going to be shot on stage.”
Jason spoke out for the first time about the 50-year-old star’s final days as Michael’s family begins a sensational civil case in Los Angeles seeking £26BILLION in damages from tour promoter AEG Live for his wrongful death.
Children Prince, 16, Paris, 15, and Blanket, 11, and his mum Katherine, 82, accuse the firm of being neglectful in hiring Dr Conrad Murray as his doctor in the lead-up to his planned London gigs.
The medic is serving a four-year jail sentence for involuntary manslaughter after giving Jackson an overdose of sedatives in June 2009.
The singer’s loved ones are seeking the vast sum — in a case expected to last three months — based on what they claim the superstar could have earned if he had lived.
Family members also allege the star was coaxed into agreeing to the 50 London shows even though he was physically and mentally unstable.
Jason, 39, says Jacko chose the UK for his long-awaited stage return as he thought there was less chance of being gunned down than at home.
The office manager revealed: “He said the comeback was in England due to the gun laws there.
“That’s why he ditched a US comeback as people had access to guns here and would shoot him. He thought America was too dangerous.
“But he still had some fears that he would be shot on stage.
According to Jason, however, it was chillingly clear that the biggest danger was Jackson’s addiction to the drugs that did finally kill him.
He died less than three weeks before the This Is It shows at London’s O2 Arena were due to start.
The clinic worker — who says Jacko often begged him to help him get his fix — said: “Michael had a death wish with his drug addiction.
“He faked medical issues so that he could receive heavy-duty painkiller Demerol — and demanded enough to knock out an elephant.
“Michael felt he was immune to normal volumes and begged for extra quantities.”
He said Jackson would sometimes demand four times the normal dose, moaning about excruciating pain for minor ailments including SPOTS.
Jason continued: “Sometimes some of our patients were groggy after shots, but never like Michael.
“I remember after procedures having to physically hold him up from behind as he was so drowsy.
“I supported him as he staggered away then laid him on a couch to sleep or rest. On other occasions I supported him as he left the building. I held him under his jacket so that people wouldn’t see him. He couldn’t walk properly.”
At the time Jason worked for Dr Arnold Klein, Jackson’s long-term skin doctor and friend, who often administered painkillers for the star. Tragically, nobody at the clinic twigged that the desperate singer was getting even more drugs at the same time from other doctors after using the same sob stories.
His friend said: “It was inevitable that something was going to go wrong.”
Lawyers for AEG Live are planning to use Jacko’s drug past in their defence, saying the Grammy winner had a long history of abusing medication before he met Dr Murray.
The tour promoters also deny being responsible for hiring or supervising the doctor, and say that £26billion in damages is “preposterous” considering Jacko’s “descending career”.
Jason says AEG’s lawyers have interviewed him, and are considering calling him as a witness in their defence of the family’s claims.
And he has shared with The Sun a previously unheard voicemail — one of a series of harrowing calls Jacko made to Jason in the weeks before his death, begging for medication from Dr Klein.
It was left at 11.06am on May 3, 2009 — seven weeks before his death.
Slurring Jacko — sounding almost unrecognisable — mumbles: “Jason call me back. It’s Michael. Err, I can’t find Klein. Erm… I have a problem in (indistinguishable) groin area and I don’t want to say this on the phone…. inflamed area, erm, on a private…
“I don’t want to say this on the phone. Tell him to call me please.”
After a brief pause he murmurs “Thank you. Right away. Bye bye”, then seems to drop the receiver.
Jason, who is now an office manager for a different clinic, said: “I thought he was drunk at first, as he was slurring and sounded so odd.
“I knew he wanted to come into the office to get a shot of Demerol, which he loved because he said it made him sleep better. He usually spoke like that after he had pain-killing jabs. These kinds of conversations had been happening for months. In the last few weeks he was calling up to get in for appointments and sounding a mess.
“He seemed desperate to get hold of anyone to help him get a jab.”
But Jason, who has previously claimed he had a gay relationship with his “soulmate” Jacko — which the star’s family disputes — admitted: “It was no surprise Michael sounded like that. I had heard him dozens of times mumble and almost sleep-talk during visits to the clinic.
“Michael seemed to get a real kick out of being like that. He enjoyed the thought of letting go.”
On June 14 — 11 days before his death — Jacko was back on the phone demanding the very sedative that, taken with sleeping and anxiety drugs, would go on to kill him.
Jason recalled: “Around 7pm Michael called me sounding harassed and flustered — he barely had time to say hello before he just asked for Propofol. He asked me if he knew anyone that could supply him with that. I didn’t even know what it was, let alone how to get it.
“Michael said: ‘I do it all the time to sleep and I wake up feeling refreshed. I have to be up for tomorrow.’
“When I said I couldn’t help, Michael just shut me down and slammed the phone down on me.”
Jackson visited Klein’s office “three or four times a week” during that final year of his life, often discussing the upcoming trip to the UK.
Chubby Jason said: “He was so excited about his comeback.
“He talked for hours about how the London shows would help him fund his dream to make movies.
“But by May he became quite weird and his moods turned darker. I could see how strained and stressed he became, both in his manner and conversations.
“Once he loved to talk for hours and even dance around the treatment room, but now he was more reserved and negative. I was very worried about him as he was in a dark place.
“He didn’t want to talk about it — and just wanted to be given injections. He had the weight of the world on the shoulders, was weary and almost unable to finish sentences. In early June he told me they had a long way to go and he wasn’t ready for the shows.
“It always seemed to me that this great comeback was more in his head than a reality.
“His once open and chatty manner switched to a more nervy, tired and worried demeanour.
“The last couple of times Michael walked around our office saying to staff, ‘God bless you’.
“Michael acted like he had a link to heaven. He said he was close to God and was here to change the planet with God’s help.
“On the last couple of occasions he started saying goodbyes to people in the office, which was eerie.
“He made over-the-top efforts to say farewell, hugging and acting personal. It made me uneasy as Michael popped back in several times a week.”
Emotional Jason still vividly remembers the very last time he saw Jackson, after the star had popped into Klein’s office just days before his death.
He recalled: “I gave him a really long hug before he walked out. Michael simply looked back and said, ‘Goodbye Jason’. He seemed so sad and his energy force had gone. Even his voice sounded forlorn.
“A shiver went through me and then three days later he was dead.”
Jason believes that only Dr Murray and Jackson himself were to blame for his early death.
He said: “I have deep sympathy for his children and family, but Michael was manipulative and overpowering when it came to getting what he wanted.
“I just wish I’d shaken some sense into him and saved his life, because he had so much to offer.”
Celebs set to testify
AMERICA is already agog at the juicy possibilities of the lawsuit launched by Jacko’s family against his concert promoters.
The case is expected to last three months – and to be packed with celebrity witnesses.
Former X Factor judge Sharon Osbourne says she has been called to give evidence and is ready to testify in support of the family’s case.
Singers Diana Ross and Prince are also expected to take the witness box.
They will be joined by Jackson’s ex-wife Lisa Marie Presley producer Quincy Jones and filmmaker Spike Lee.
And the superstar’s two eldest children, Prince, 16, and Paris, 15, are also reported to be keen to tell the court their version of the events that led up to their father’s fatal overdose.
Unfortunately for eager TV bosses, on Friday the judge ruled that the case will NOT be televised.
News channels enjoyed huge audiences with live coverage of the 2011 trial of Dr Conrad Murray for the involuntary manslaughter of the star. Jackson’s family had argued in favour of having a camera in court, claiming it would be the best way for the world to see “justice done”.
But lawyers for promoters AEG Live insisted that televising the case could create a frenzy at the small courtroom that could pose a threat to witnesses.
Jury selection for the civil case began last Tuesday, but it is a notoriously lengthy process.
Opening statements and the first witnesses in the case, to be held at the Los Angeles County Superior Court, are not expected to be heard for a fortnight.
The wrongful death lawsuit that will now finally be heard was first filed in 2010 by Jacko’s mum Katherine and his three kids.
It blames AEG Live for hiring Dr Murray – who administered the overdose – ahead of Jacko’s planned London concerts in 2009. It also claims they pushed him into agreeing to the shows.
AEG denies all the claims.
Dr Murray, now in jail for his role in the death, may also be a witness – but he has the right to refuse to testify.
Brian Panish, the attorney representing the Jackson family, has said ahead of the trial: “All we ask is that the truth be seen by everyone once and for all.”
Meanwhile AEG’s attorney Marvin Putnam has been quoted as saying: “I don’t know how you can’t look to Mr Jackson’s responsibility there. He was a grown man.”