Testimony in the Michael Jackson case took an unexpected turn Monday, as the 15-year-old boy whom the pop star is accused of molesting admitted making statements that Jackson had never touched him.
Under cross-examination by lead defense counsel Thomas Mesereau Jr., the boy said he had told a dean at John Burroughs Middle School in Los Angeles that Jackson “didn’t do anything to me,” the Associated Press reports. The boy was a student at the school at the time.
Jackson’s accuser reportedly had more than one conversation with Jeffrey Alpert, the school’s dean, in which he stated that Jackson did not touch him. The boy also said that the discussions occurred when he returned from Neverland, after the alleged abuse would have taken place. What prompted the conversations was not exactly clear. The boy, however, admitted to having run-ins with teachers, and school records indicated he had disciplinary problems.
“I was argumentative at times. I didn’t like the way (teachers) taught me,” the boy said on the witness stand. “I wasn’t learning anything.”
Mesereau also called into question a statement the boy had made regarding masturbation, AP reports. On Thursday, when he began his testimony, the accuser said that Jackson had told him that if men didn’t masturbate, they would rape women – a statement similar to one the boy had earlier attributed to his grandmother, Mesereau pointed out.
When the defense attorney asked the boy whether he had changed his story, the teen said both Jackson and his grandmother told him similar things, but that “(My grandmother) was telling me it was OK to do it, and Michael was saying that you have to do it.”
Jackson, 46, is charged with administering alcohol to a minor and molestation. He has pleaded not guilty.