Investigation into Michael Jackson’s abuse of two boys was ‘dropped so he could meet Reagan at the White House’
- FBI files show allegations against singer date back to 1978
- Agents concerned about embarrassing President as he handed over award
Official visit: Michael Jackson with President Reagan and First Lady Nancy at the White House in 1984
The singer was presented with an award by President Reagan in May 1984 – the year his album Thriller won eight Grammys – for his efforts to end drink-driving in teenagers.
He was awarded the Presidential Public Safety Communication Award after allowing his song Beat It to be used in a public service campaign, according to CNN.
King of pop: Jackson was invited to the White House in the year Thriller won eight Grammy awards
During the ceremony President Reagan said: ‘Michael Jackson is proof of what a person can accomplish through a lifestyle free of alcohol or drug abuse.’
He added: ‘If Americans follow his example, then we can face up to the problem of drinking and driving, and we can, in Michael’s words, beat it.’
Jackson was also invited to the White House to meet President Bush sr and his family in 1990.
The President presents Jackson with an award for his help on a drink-driving campaign
Michael Jackson’s FBI file which was released in 2009 basically vindicated MJ
Jackson Attorney: FBI Files Are ‘Almost Vindication’
A lawyer for the Michael Jackson family said that the now public but heavily redacted FBI file on the late pop superstar shows that “there’s not one scrap of evidence” that Michael Jackson ever harmed a child.
“In all these pages, hundreds of pages, many many hours of investigations … there’s not one scrap of evidence that Michael Jackson ever … did anything wrong, committed any crime,” said Brian Oxman, who represented several members of the Jackson family. “It’s almost a vindication, when you look at this. The FBI looked at all of these matters and said, ‘There’s nothing here.'”
Oxman said the sheer scope of the documents — 333 pages out of the 673-page file were made public — came as a shock to the Jackson family.
“I spoke to Joe Jackson last night. He said that this FBI file was something he never heard of,” Oxman said. “We’re surprised and shocked by what we found.”
Oxman said he knew the file existed but “had no idea” the FBI had investigated Jackson’s home computers in search of child pornography as the documents state.
According to one of the FBI agents involved in the Jackson investigation, the bureau was brought in at the request of local police.
One major revelation in the more than 300 pages of government documents was that the FBI had assisted Santa Barbara, Calif., officials in their attempt to get cooperation from a person who could have been a key witness in the 2005 child molestation case against Michael Jackson: the boy who accused the pop star of molesting him in 1993.
No criminal charges were ever filed in the 1993 case. Instead, the then 12-year-old boy refused to cooperate with officials and accepted a multi-million dollar settlement from Jackson.
The documents released Tuesday under the Freedom of Information Act show that the FBI and Santa Barbara officials met in 2004 with Jackson’s 1993 accuser but were unsuccessful in getting his cooperation.
Jackson was acquitted of all charges in the 2005 case, which went to trial.
Molestation Accuser Identity Redacted
The heavily redacted FBI documents do not reveal the name of the boy that officials met with.
“Victim indicates that he has no interest in testifying against Jackson,” according to the documents, “and would legally fight any attempt to do so.”
Prior to the FBI’s interview with the accuser, the documents show that the FBI helped Santa Barbara prosecutors with “interview strategies for a victim who alleged that Michael Jackson had abused him in 1993.”
The documents also quote the boy as saying that he “believed that he had done his part,” presumably referring to his initial involvement with law enforcement before agreeing to a civil settlement with Jackson that is believed to be $20 million.
Former FBI Behavioral Unit agent Ken Lanning, who consulted on the 2003 molestation case, told ABCNews.com Tuesday that this kind of coordination is common.
“Child molestation cases are the type of cases that involve multi agencies,” he said. “There were potential federal violations and the FBI has jurisdiction in a couple of areas. What the FBI behavioral analysis unit does is try to work on the approach, help them understand the issues.”
The documents also reveal that Santa Barbara police had concerns about a possible terrorist attack related to the 2003 arrest of Jackson, which led to a request for FBI assistance. The FBI concluded there was no threat.
The 1993 accuser’s mother, June did testify at the trial 2005 and told the court that the ordeal with Jackson in 1993 fractured the boy’s family and cost her the relationship she had with her son.
The accuser’s father Evan killed himself last month. A onetime Beverly Hills dentist, Evan was found in his New Jersey waterfront apartment dead from a self-inflicted gunshot wound.
Sources close to the family say his suicide most likely stemmed from his longtime debilitating illness.
During the 2005 trial it was known that the FBI’s behavioral and forensics units had consulted on the case, but the file released Tuesday reveals that various arms of the FBI assisted the Santa Barbara district attorney’s office.
They included the crimes against children unit (CACU), innocent images national initiative against children unit, computer analysis response team(CART), the FBI lab, Los Angeles NCAVC coordinator and the Department of Justice’s child exploitation and obscenity section (CEO’s).
The FBI examined Jackson’s motor vehicle records to see if he “transported a minor across state lines for immoral purposes.” The agency went toLondon and Manila to investigate other accusations that Jackson had engaged in improper behavior with boys.
The agency also investigated another allegation from a woman and her husband who worked in child services in Toronto, Canada. The couple had taken the same train as Jackson from Chicago to the Grand Canyon and said Jackson had a minor boy with him whom he identified as a “cousin.” The couple reported that Jackson was possessive of the boy and that they heard questionable noises. The woman was concerned enough to notify a conductor.
Before the 2005 trial, the FBI and DA also met to discuss “…the collection of sexually explicit images in magazine and books” and a VHS videotape that the FBI analyzed as part of a child pornography investigation.
Also within the documents is a lot of material pertaining to threats made by Frank Paul Jones, who was convicted in 1993 of stalking Janet Jackson and threatening to commit mass murder at a Michael Jackson concert.
This was all reported at the time, but it’s not clear if Jones’ letters were ever released.
In one letter, dated 5/21/1992, Jones threatened to kill Michael Jackson if “I don’t get my money.”
Jones copied the FBI and the late mob boss John Gotti on the letter. He also threatened to kill President George H.W. Bush.
On July 16, 1992 Jones threatened in another letter to “commit mass murder” at a Michael Jackson concert, if necessary, in an attempt to kill Jackson.