Katherine Jackson filed a 'wrongful death' lawsuit yesterday in Los Angeles Superior Court against AEG Live for its part in the death of her son, pop icon Michael Jackson. Katherine Jackson filed the suit in her name, and the names of Michael's three children, against the concert promotion company arguing that they overworked the self-proclaimed King of Pop in the weeks leading up to the "This Is It" tour's opening. Jackson said in the suit that AEG Live is guilty of "putting its desire for massive profits" ahead of the health and welfare of her son. Furthermore, Jackson says that AEG was responsible for the doctor it hired -- albeit it at the late singer's behest -- and was negligent in its failure to provide the proper life-saving equipment needed to save his life when he went into cardiac arrest. Michael Jackson died of cardiac arrest brought on by the inappropriate use of a powerful anesthetic plied by Dr. Conrad Murray as a sleeping aid. Murray has been charged with involuntary manslaughter for his part of the case. Jackson's lawyer said of the suit, "The purpose of this lawsuit is to prove to the world the truth about what happened to Michael Jackson, once and for all." There are no specified damages claimed in the suit, which also seeks damages for emotional distress on behalf of Prince Michael Jackson, the oldest of the Jackson children, who witnessed the death of his father.
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Dr. Murray, meanwhile, has filed papers in response to the wrongful death suit against him filed by Joseph Jackson last month. Dr. Murray was named in the lawsuit by Joseph Jackson, with claims that he withheld information from emergency responders, as well as trying to hide evidence. Joseph Jackson also says that Murray attempted to get Michael to stop taking medications prescribed by other physicians and only take those prescribed by him, which makes him solely responsible for the overdose on propofol. But Murray says in his papers filed yesterday that Dr. Albert Klein, Jackson's plastic surgeon, was medicating the pop star as late as the week of his death, and that he shares in the blame.
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The cemetery where Michael Jackson is buried is now charging fans a service fee for leaving gifts for the late singer. TMZ reports that Forest Lawn in Glendale, Calif., has taken down the staging area outside the mausoleum where Jackson is buried, and now fans who want to leave flowers -- and only flowers -- in honor of Jackson must pay $3 for them to be placed inside the mausoleum. The cemetery also says that other gifts, such as candles, photos or teddy bears, would be disposed of when discovered by grounds workers.
• • •Basketball superstar Dwight Howard is seeking more than $500 million in damages from the mother of his two-year-old son. Howard says that ex-girlfriend Royce Reed has violated the terms of a 2009 gag order by spilling dirt to the media about the NBA star. Reed is a member of the cast of 'Basketball Wives' on the VH1 network, and Howard says that she has violated the terms of the order at least 11 times, which he said had the potential to reach as many as one-million readers each time. Using that logic, Howard says that Reed owes him $500,500,000. Reed's lawyer says that any information that has been "leaked" could have been culled from legal documents and would not constitute a violation of any court order.
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Country music singer LeAnn Rimes tells Shape magazine in a new interview about the cheating scandal that broke up her marriage. In the interview, Rimes says that her marriage to Dean Sheremet started out "great" but that they grew apart as a couple, the longer they were married, and that "it wasn't a fulfilling marriage for either of us."
Rimes says that she can understand why fans were shocked by the split. "I understand why people are disappointed in me, especially since I grew up as America's sweetheart. I think any relationship is hard to get out of, and I don't think the way I did it was right." Rimes has since moved in with boyfriend, actor Eddie Cibrian, whom she met while filming a movie. She said that she has learned from what happened, and tells the mag, "I know I can face anything."