Every once in a while the question pops up – did Michael Jackson own child pornography?
To begin, we need to clear something up. How do our lawmakers define child pornography? The paraphrased legal definition of child pornography is images of children engaged in sexual conduct. Sexual Conduct includes penetration, masturbation, and lewd or lascivious sexual acts whether alone or with others.
That’s the legal definition. However, everyone has their own internal dictionary and for most people, the meaning of child porn would be much broader to include lascivious or suggestive nude pictures of children.
Nude images of children, on their own, are not classified as child porn even if they are suggestive, and are perfectly legal for pedophiles to own. For the layman, it’s difficult to understand why seemingly obscene images of children are legal, yet it’s a distinction that those who want to get around the law know only too well.
First, a bit of history. Up until the mid-70s, child pornography was legally available in the US. It’s not to say that people who were discovered to have owned such material weren’t viewed with suspicion, however facing jail if caught with such materials wasn’t a concern for them.
In 1977, after congressional hearings, the House passed the Kildee-Murphy Bill which prohibited the manufacture, distribution, and possession of child pornography.
In the late 80s State lawmakers began to pass their own laws prohibiting the making and distribution of images depicting children engaged in sex acts.
These new laws had the effect of, quite rightly, making criminals of those in possession of child abuse images. Most pedophiles didn’t want to risk being caught with illegal material, yet they still needed images of children to gratify their sexual desires. With images of nude children not engaged in sex being perfectly legal, pedophiles turned to other outlets for their titillation. Two safe avenues became prominent in the pre-Internet age – so called “art” books featuring images of naked children, and naturist magazines.
This brings us to the material found at Neverland in a search in late 1993. Jackson owned two books, as well as photos and magazines featuring nude images of children.
The two books were The Boy: A Photographic Essay and Boys Will Be Boys. These books are classic examples of the type of materials many pedophiles own according to Bill Dworin, a 34-year veteran of the LAPD who has investigated more than 4,000 sexual exploitation cases. “Pedophiles will frequently have this material available because they can obtain it legally, it’s not illegal to possess”. .
The Boy: A Photographic Essay is a book compiled by two known pedophiles, Martin Swithinbank and Ronald Drew, under the pseudonyms Georges St. Martin and Ronald C. Nelson. More of their history can be found in this article.
Swithinbank and Nelson collated photos of boys, mainly from pedophile photographers Hajo Ortil, Karel Egermeier, Jos Le Doare, Jacques Simonot and others, and created The Boy. Around ten percent of the photos in the book are of nude boys, many of them with their buttocks or genitals displayed. The front cover features a naked boy with his buttocks exposed, wistfully staring into the ocean. This gives you an idea of the book’s intended audience.
This book has often been described as being based on the 1963 movie Lord of the Flies, with the photos supposedly taken on set while filming. This is untrue. There are some photographs taken on the set of the movie, but only twenty-three of them. The bulk of the remaining 380 or so photographs in the book are from several pedophile photographers, plus a few stock photographs as fillers.
Whilst many would dismiss this book as mere “artistic photography”, a cursory browse of images from the book (available on Google) paints an altogether different picture. You see poses that we’ve seen many times before, although we’ve seen them in erotic magazines that feature adults, not children.
In one photo, a boy with close-cropped hair stands at a door in just a pair of tight underpants, his hands gripping each side of the jamb, his muscles tensed to emphasize definition. In another, a boy is draped over a rock sunbathing, his eyes closed, one arm to the side and one leg drawn up. Yet another shows a tall, thin naked boy floating on his back in a pool, his back arched and his eyes shut as if in ecstasy, with genitals on full display.
The bulk of the images in this book are way beyond just observation. Many shots are well choreographed to sexualize the young male form. The sole purpose of these images, being of boys of a particular age range rather than adults, is for the titillation of pedophiles, nothing more. To ascribe any kind of nobility or artistic pretense to the publication is an obfuscation of it’s true intent. Whilst some images in the book could be classed as innocent, the overarching theme of the book is an appeal to those with an unhealthy obsession with prepubescent boys.
Jackson allegedly received this book from a fan, and the inscription on the flyleaf – To Michael: From your fan, “Rhonda” ♥ 1983, Chicago – would suggest that to be true. Some assert that Jackson was “sent a lot of stuff and didn’t know what he received”, yet this was shown to be not the case when Joe Marcus, Neverland’s house manager, testified at Jackson’s 2005 trial. He told the court staff screened all the gifts sent to the pop star’s home and passed on to Jackson only “nicer items that I think that he might be interested in seeing, what the fans have sent for him.”
If Jackson categorically didn’t have a sexual interest in boys, he would have thrown the book in the trash, not kept it carefully hidden away (it was revealed at Jackson’s 2005 molestation trial that the book was found in a locked filing cabinet in Jackson’s bedroom, along with it’s companion piece, Boys Will Be Boys).
By the same authors, Boys Will Be Boys was even more highly geared toward pedophiles. Whilst the cover is fairly modest, showing four boys in swimmers jumping into a lake, many images within are very explicit.
In Boys Will Be Boys around ninety percent of the boys are naked. The worst images are far too lewd for us to publish here, and could possibly be illegal in many countries (reaching up to 6 on the COPINE scale). We talked with someone who has seen the book, who said, “This book is clearly targeted at pedophiles. One shot shows a boy staring straight to camera, relaxing in an easy chair totally naked, his legs spread with his genitals clearly on show. Another photo shows a boy in speedos, an erection clearly visible. Yet another is of a nude boy climbing a tree, shot from below so that nothing is left to the imagination. I’ve seen similar photos often of adults in similar poses.”
Jackson wrote inside the front cover of Boys Will Be Boys, “Look at the true spirit of happiness and joy in these boys’ faces. This is the spirit of boyhood, a life I have never had and will always dream of. This is the life I want for my children.”
If Jackson took delight in children’s faces, he certainly chose an odd book to express his delight, one composed of photos of mainly nude boys. Perhaps the inscription was an attempt to divert suspicion should he ever leave the book out where somebody could find it. It’s also clear now that the life Jackson gave his children was vastly different from that shown in the book, although that’s a subject for another day.
That Jackson acquired the companion piece to The Boy: A Photographic Essay, whether it was gifted to him (and was subsequently kept) or was bought by him, and that he kept the two books together locked in the same filing cabinet in his bedroom away from the rest of his book collection, is an indication that these two books were special to Jackson.
During Jackson’s 2005 trial, Senior Deputy District Attorney Ron Zonen argued that the books were “.. an example of a prurient interest in nude boys.” Defense lawyer Robert Sanger called the books irrelevant to the current case and said they would unfairly prejudice the jury. “It’s just plain stale to bring in something from that far back,” Sanger said. The judge, Rodney Melville, allowed the books to be presented as evidence as many of the photos “could be determined to be sexually explicit.” The media were only shown the covers of the two books, so the suggestive nature of the images in the books wasn’t publicly discussed at length..
Court TV was one news outlet which managed to get a hold of the books in question, and they were featured on a segment broadcast during jury deliberations. Host Catherine Crier and guests Frank Cascio and Frank’s lawyer Joe Tacopina discussed their propriety:
Mr Tacopina, in his vehement, almost hysterical, defense of these books is perfectly correct when he suggests that these items are not illegal and mere ownership does not mean that someone is a pedophile. After all, as many have pointed out, these books can be found in many libraries and personal collections the world over. What is damning though is that Jackson shared both a lot of his time, as well as his bed, with a succession of boys the same age as those erotically portrayed in these books. It is a combination of the books plus the amount of attention Jackson gave to boys that is the problem, not the books on their own. Context is everything.
Watching the video, the host initially declines to show any of the images from Boys Will Be Boys on camera due to their explicit nature, although she does eventually concede and shows one photograph with her hand strategically placed over the boy’s genital area. Most people would agree after seeing that, this is not an “innocent” art book when it is in possession of a man who regularly slept with boys.
One could also legitimately ask the question, if these books were coffee table books, as they’ve been described by others, why didn’t Jackson have them proudly out on display rather than hiding them in a filing cabinet? Probably because anyone with an intense interest in children, such as Jackson did, would be held in high suspicion were these books ever openly displayed in their home.
Also special to Jackson were two actual photographs of nude boys found in his bedroom at Neverland in 1993. The first was a young boy, completely nude. In court documents, the prosecutors wrote that they believed it to be a photograph of one of Jackson’s young friends Jonathan Spence. Some people have suggested that the photo never existed, giving the excuse that “it was only mentioned in one motion”. However the photograph, among other items, was
discussed by Jackson attorney Brian Oxman at a January 28 hearing in the 2005 trial. He knew the photo existed, he argued that it shouldn’t be allowed to be entered into evidence, and he referenced it many times. The photo was definitely real. It would be absurd to suggest that the prosecution would attempt to have items entered into evidence, and if successful be unable to produce them, especially in a high-profile case such as this one.
The other photo referenced in the motion depicted a boy holding an umbrella who was nude apart from a pair of partially pulled down bikini bottoms. Once again, as with the photo of Jonathan Spence, this was an actual photograph. Think about that for a moment. Actual nude and semi-nude photographs of boys that the prosecution believed they had established Jackson knew and spent time with. Boys whose parents had entrusted their sons to Jackson because they believed they were safe with him. Or even worse, parents who knew what was going on but turned a blind eye because of who Jackson was.
You are probably asking yourself, why didn’t Jackson get into trouble for possessing those two photos? As discussed earlier, it is not illegal to own naked photos of children unless they are clearly classed as child pornography. Even though Jackson’s ownership of those photos rang alarm bells, they were not against the law. As long as the parents and the boys didn’t complain about any impropriety, Jackson was in the clear.
Even after reading this, there may be some people who may be ambivalent about whether these materials are “so bad” or not. To put things in a personal context, most people would take a negative view if it were their child or a child they knew that was featured in the material we’ve been discussing.
In addition, the 2005 the search at Neverland yielded twenty nine nudist magazines: five copies of The Nudist from 1935; nineteen copies of The Nudist, Sunshine and Health; one copy of Solaire Universelle de Nudisme from May 1961; one copy of American Sunbather from May 1961; and three issues of Eden magazine.
Why would Michael Jackson be interested in nudist magazines?
According to the 1998 study Sexuality and the internet: Surfing into the new millennium, in the early 1990’s law enforcement in the United States were making relatively few arrests for child pornography. Evidence seized from suspects often consisted of decades-old naturist magazine photographs or series of photographs that were well known to investigators. These magazines would easily fall into that category.
In his book Naked: A Cultural History of American Nudism, Brian Hoffman writes:
Magazines such as the Nudist, which began its thirty-year run in May 1933, featured large, glossy pages and numerous photos alongside lengthy articles on a variety of nudist topics.
Displayed at newsstands and sent through the mail, the Nudist sold thousands of issues each month. The editors and leaders of the nudist movement wanted the many pictures in their magazines to show the benefits of going naked at a nudist camp; but the display of the naked body also allowed for multiple readings. An image of a naked muscular man presented readers with a symbol of strength and athleticism or a source of titillation for both women and men. The display of full-frontal female nudes of all body types exhibited nudism’s commitment to showing the body without shame while also providing glimpses of genitalia rarely displayed in other forms of commercial pornography. The many images of children in the magazine communicated the natural joy of going naked and gave individuals seeking out intergenerational sex a venue to gaze at prepubescent youth.
Hoffman’s book also details the infiltration of nudist circles by pedophiles and pedophile photographers who not only preyed on children but also contributed photos of children to the naturist magazines.
As Jackson already had books and magazines featuring naked men and women, the only plausible reason he would have had for owning these magazines was to view naked images of children. This makes sense, Jackson had skated close to thin ice in 1993 when his copies of The Boy: A Photographic Essay and Boys Will Be Boys were discovered in a locked cabinet, items that would closely tie him to an erotic interest in boys. Nudist magazines featuring children and adults didn’t look so suspicious and stayed in the theme of being legal to possess.
In 2016 one of Jackson’s former attorneys, Brain Oxman, was interviewed and suggested that the pop star’s collection of twenty-nine naturist magazines was a “historic investment” for which he had paid $320,000. Whether Oxman was lied to or is lying, this seems highly unlikely. Magazines that Jackson purportedly paid over $10,000 each for can be sourced from eBay or online sellers for between ten and fifty dollars each. These magazines were no “investment”. It’s more likely they were a new, safer source of nude boy images for Jackson after the loss of his original sources, The Boy and Boys Will Be Boys.
Out of all the items seized from Neverland in 2005, only nine items had fluorescing stains. Eight of the nine items with fluorescing stains were these naturist magazines. Fluorescing stains show up on evidence when bodily fluids have been spilled on the item. I will leave it up to your imagination as to what those bodily fluids may have been[see note].
County of Santa Barbara Sheriff’s Department, Bureau of Criminalistics Report: Items with fluorescing stains
What is interesting about this debate over the porn found in Jackson’s home has been the evolution of the arguments in the defense of Jackson over the years. He befriended and became close friends with a succession of young boys, and rarely had a romantic interest in women. Some of those boys were Emmanuel Lewis (1982-1984), Jonathan Spence (1984 – 1987), Jimmy Safechuck (1987-1992), Sean Lennon (1987 – 1988), Wade Robson (1990 – 1997), Brett Barnes (1991 – 1996), Jordan Chandler (1993), Frank & Eddie Cascio (1993 – 1996), Omer Bhatti (1996 – 2003) and Juju Elatab (2003).
Even though Jackson did marry twice, both marriages were short-lived. Jackson was reportedly furious that his first wife Lisa Marie Presley would not agree to become pregnant. She was reluctant because she felt the marriage was doomed, saying “When I imagined having a child with him, all I could ever see was the custody battle nightmare.” He decided to dump Presley and focus on someone who was willing to have his children, his second wife Debbie Rowe. The focus of Jackson’s only verifiable relationships with women appeared to be as a source for children, not love or sex, and the older Jackson’s children become, it becomes more apparent that he relied on artificial insemination to conceive them.
In any case, though married he never put a stop to his friendships with young boys. While married to Lisa Marie Presley Jackson spent an inordinate amount of time with Cascio brothers Eddie and Frank. Presley was reportedly angry that Jackson preferred the company of the young boys and chose them to vacation with rather than her. Whilst traveling with a pregnant Debbie Rowe in Australia, Jackson brought along his cousin, 8-year-old Anthony Jackson. The pop star also moved his newly discovered best friend, 12-year-old Omer Bhatti into his home and into his bed despite being nominally married to Rowe.
Jackson didn’t alter his behavior over decades, it was only the explanations for his behavior which changed.
Despite extensive public scrutiny, nobody has ever identified any adult female lovers or girlfriends of Jacksons, even though a few pretenders have surfaced. Yet defenders point to his heterosexual pornography as the final evidence of his heterosexuality.
Yes, it is true that Jackson owned a sizable collection of soft-core porn, some three dozen magazines. The bulk of these were Barely Legal and similar magazines where the models are selected for their similarity to underage girls. Jackson was never noted to have an interest in underage looking girls.
Jackson also owned hardcore heterosexual pornography, some of it quite shocking including bondage, simulated rape, anal fisting, brown showers, “chicks with dicks” and lesbianism.
Jackson’s straight porn collection was not the result of a prosaic interest in sexuality, rather each item falls into one of two categories – either reflecting a perverse and distorted interest in sex, or anodyne soft core pornography which seemed designed to appeal to teenage boys. In any case, the straight porn wasn’t for himself – out of the hundreds of fingerprints found on this material, investigators could only positively identify a handful that belonged to Jackson.
Why then would Jackson own straight porn if he was a pedophile? Kenneth Lanning, an FBI expert in the study of the sexual victimization of children, says in relation to pedophiles, “Adult pornography is frequently left out for the children to “discover.” A collection of adult pornography is effective in sexually arousing and lowering the inhibitions of adolescent boys. This is an important reason why preferential child molesters collect adult pornography. Some of them may even attempt to use this collection as proof that they do not have a sexual preference for children.”
Detective Craig Bonner of the Santa Barbara County Sherriff’s Department reviewed the porn and so-called “art books” found during the raid at Neverland and wrote in his report, “Based on my training, this type of material can be used as part of a “grooming” process by which people (those seeking to molest children) are able to lower their inhibitions of their intended victims and facilitate the molestation of said victims.”
As Jackson never showed any interest whatsoever in the type of girls featured in any of the magazines, either publicly or privately, it’s more likely that the material wasn’t for his own use.
What defenders also studiously ignore (or also dismiss as “art”) is the large amount of homosexual and homoerotic material that was found, including (but not limited to) Camp Cove – Photos Sydney Men, Bidgood, Chop Suey Club, Taormina and damningly, Man: A Sexual Study of Man, a gay sex primer on how to perform activities such as anal sex and oral sex.
One cannot simply dismiss the homoerotic material as “irrelevant” to Jackson’s sexuality. Jackson deliberately bought books, or they were gifted to him (as employee Joe Marcus revealed, when items were sent to Neverland Jackson was always handed the “nicer stuff” that Marcus thought he would be interested in), so nothing that was found at Jackson’s home was there by accident. These are books that Jackson wanted there.
Even if there were some artistic goal to Jackson perusing these books, they were far too risque to be left lying around in a place that supposedly celebrated the innocence of children. Even though this was Jackson’s residence, because he portrayed it as a safe place for children and promoted it as such to the parents of his young friends, these books along with the pornography should have been removed to another location. If Jackson unthinkingly left such material where children could find it would show he had a complete disdain for the innocence of children as well as the trust placed in him by parents.
Back to the evolution of the defense of Jackson.
The defenders of Jackson in the late 1980’s and early 1990’s insisted that Jackson was “asexual”, so him spending time with boys was totally innocent. In 1993, when Jackson was first accused of child molestation, this defense became de rigueur, although as you may recall Jackson already owned the two books featuring naked boys, so that defense was already inaccurate. At that time defenders also suggested that Jackson was hosting one-on-one sleepovers with boys because he was “a child himself”. As more evidence was revealed about Jackson over the years, including his prescription drug abuse and, during the 2005 trial his collection of pornography and naked photos of children, this defense became untenable.
Bizarrely, once knowledge of Jackson’s porn and erotica collection was made public, defenders doubled down and insisted that the homoerotic material and pedophile material should be ignored, and that Jackson’s true interest lay in adult women based on his straight porn collection. This is in spite of a distinct lack of female relationships or any evidence of an interest in women beyond his collection.
If his hardcore pornography collection were to be taken at face value it shows a distinct lack of appreciation of women and instead shows someone who has disdain for them. Defenders are reduced to promoting the idea that Jackson had “secret” girlfriends – girlfriends so secret that not even his closest associates and family knew about them. It borders on the ridiculous.
Put together Jackson’s straight porn collection, both hard and soft core, his failed marriages, the lack of fingerprints found thereon and the distinct lack of female company in his life, and you have nothing. Put together the relationships (and sleepovers) with boys, the naked photos of boys, and the homoerotica, and you have the portrait of a pedophile.
Did Jackson own child porn? According to the law of California and the United States, no. According to your definition? That is for you to decide.
Shameful Media Episode
The reason I came to write this story was because of an article published on the Radar Online website in June 2016, titled Paedo Proof? Never-Before-Seen Cop Reports Expose Michael Jackson’s Sick Secrets. The subtitle was Documents reveal star ‘as a manipulative, drug-and-sex-crazed predator.’. Amazing click bait, right?
The story itself was typical tabloid fodder with a sensationalist writing style and half truths interspersed with facts. It starts with the quote:
Nearly seven years after the King of Pop’s death, RadarOnline.com has obtained never-before-seen reports from the Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Department that show the true depths of his depravity.
Never-before-seen reports from the Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Department? That’s entirely not true. The same documents from the Sheriff’s department have been online since Michael Jackson’s trial in 2005, and we’ve had them online on our site since 2010.
The document they did link was “new”, in the sense that someone had collated several reports together and interspersed them with pictures they had downloaded purportedly depicting some of the material in those reports. Who put this collated document together is a mystery. Whether it was sourced from within RadarOnline or whether it was supplied to the website by a third party is unknown. However, although there were a couple of errors in the added material, it was basically correct, and contained authentic documents which were presented at Jackson’s 2005 molestation trial.
Link to original document posted by Radar Online
Problematic though was RadarOnline’s description of the contents of that report.
The article, which was syndicated to hundreds of news sites across the world, caused a furore. Because of this one snippet in RadarOnline’s description – [the report] included filthy photos and videos of men, women, boys and girls in perverted positions – it was reported extensively that Jackson had owned child pornography. This obviously isn’t true, according to the strict letter of the law. Although some photos of children in Jackson’s possession could be described as perverted, none were illegal. Yet they were reported as such.
The article and the fallout from it made the truth a victim. Some things were clarified though.
The Santa Barbara Sheriff’s Department wrote in response to the article:
“Some of the documents appear to be copies of reports that were authored by Sheriff’s Office personnel as well as evidentiary photographs taken by Sheriff’s Office personnel interspersed with content that appears to be obtained off the internet or through unknown sources. The Sheriff’s Office did not release any of the documents and/or photographs to the media. The Sheriff’s Office released all of its reports and the photographs as part of the required discovery process to the prosecution and the defense.”
Many people seized on the words “…content that appears to be obtained off the internet or through unknown sources…” and erroneously pronounced the entire RadarOnline PDF as fake. One of those was a spokesperson for the Michael Jackson Estate, who gleefully responded:
“Everything in these reports, including what the County of Santa Barbara calls “content that appears to be obtained off the Internet or through unknown sources” is false…”
Clearly, the factual reports from the Sheriff’s Department were not false, and most of the photos weren’t either so it’s quite disingenuous for the Estate to label them as such.
Assistant District Attorney at Jackson’s trial, Ron Zonen, was interviewed by People magazine a day later and stated, “…law enforcement did discover adult pornographic magazines and videos, though nothing constituting child pornography.”
Zonen went on to say, “There were photos of nude children but they weren’t sexually graphic.” The photos he says showed children “playing in the stream, climbing trees, nature photographs, nudist colonies, things like that.”
You’ve seen the photos above. While not sexually graphic, they are sexualized photos of boys.
The truth is that Jackson owned the same material owned by many pedophiles, including full frontal nudes of boys, while he was sharing his bed and spending much of his spare time with boys the same age as those depicted in the very same material. While it was wrong for Radar Online and other media to say Jackson owned child pornography, it is also wrong for anyone to suggest that nothing incriminating was found. You’ve read the descriptions of what was found, you be the judge.
Law enforcement investigators and child abuse therapists know what possession of these material means. They know all the background about these books, the environment in which they were produced, who produced them and who they were produced for. The folks who bleat that these books are mere art and their possession by Jackson means nothing are either completely ignorant or are deliberately trying to downplay their significance. In other words, they’re MJ fans and pedophiles – and maybe both at the same time.
 From Californian Penal Code 311: “sexual conduct” means any of the following, whether actual or simulated: sexual intercourse, oral copulation, anal intercourse, anal oral copulation, masturbation, bestiality, sexual sadism, sexual masochism, penetration of the vagina or rectum by any object in a lewd or lascivious manner, exhibition of the genitals or pubic or rectal area for the purpose of sexual stimulation of the viewer, any lewd or lascivious sexual act as defined in Section 288, or excretory functions performed in a lewd or lascivious manner, whether or not any of the above conduct is performed alone or between members of the same or opposite sex or between humans and animals. An act is simulated when it gives the appearance of being sexual conduct.”. Technically exhibition of the genitals or pubic or rectal area for the purpose of sexual stimulation of the viewer could apply to some of the material in the books Jackson owned however the subjective nature of the definition would make prosecution difficult.
Naked: A Cultural History of American Nudism by Brian Hoffman
New Look At Dark Accusations, NBC News, 17th February 2003
Judge Bars Journalist’s Testimony in Jackson Trial, but Allows Jurors to See ‘Boy’ Books, LA Times, 30th April 2005
Jacko’s ‘joy’ boys – naked pictures reveal ‘innocent’ yearnings, New York Post, 30th April 2005
Jacko’s Sick Excuses Exposed! Former Attorney Says Pervy Kiddie Art ‘Was Not Porn’, Radar Online, 23rd June 2016
Michael Jackson: The Magic, The Madness, The Whole Story, 1958-2009 by J. Randy Taraborrelli
Testimony of Robert Spinner http://www.mjfacts.com/transcripts/Court%20Transcript_3_25_2005.pdf, http://www.mjfacts.com/transcripts/Court_Transcript_3_28_2005.pdf, http://www.mjfacts.com/transcripts/Court%20Transcript_3_29_2005.pdf
The Full List Of Porn and Erotica Found in Michael Jackson’s Home
Police Reports Surface Detailing Michael Jackson’s Alleged Pornography Collection; Jackson Estate Responds, Billboard, 21st June 2016
Michael Jackson’s Estate Blasts New Pornography Reports as Sheriff and Former Prosecutor Weigh In, People Magazine, 22nd June 2016
[note]Some have argued that this exchange between Jackson lawyer Robert Sanger and witness Charlene Marie, senior criminalist of the California Department of Justice at the Santa Barbara Regional Crime Laboratory, proves something:
Q. Okay. And your job was to look at that with an alternative light source, correct?
Q. Did I ask you this? On 766, that’s your handwriting on the notes around the pictures?
A. It is.
Q. All right. And when you looked at the alternative light source, looked at the items with the alternative light source, did you find any suspected DNA to sample and analyze?
A. Well, the light source is just a presumptive searching tool, and all it’s going to tell you is if something’s glowing. If something’s glowing, biologicals do glow, so that’s one area that you might want to test.
Q. Okay. Is that what you were looking for?
A. I was looking for biological material, yes.
Q. Bodily fluids, pretty much?
Q. The question is, did you find any?
A. I did not.
Q. So as far as you could tell, there was no DNA to be tested from the materials you were sent?
A. Well, there’s no seminal material.
Q. There’s nothing you felt — just to make it clear, I’m not trying to trap you here, but there was nothing that you found and you said, “Ah-hah, we ought to send this off to Sacramento or have a DNA lab do a further analysis of this”; is that correct?
A. That’s right.
Q. You pretty much packaged it back up and sent it back to Santa Barbara?
A. I did, yes.
From this exchange, others have come to the conclusion that no semen stains were found on the nudist magazines. This is erroneous. Earlier in her testimony, Ms Marie was asked about what evidence she was asked to test:
A. So, yes, I did. I received evidence. And did you ask me what did I receive?
Q. Not yet.
Q. What did you receive?
A. I received Item 317, and various subsets of that, 317-B, G, K, L, R, S, Y, double B, double C, 26 double E, double K, double R, double U, double Y, 27 and triple D. 15 items.
Charlene Marie received only 15 items from Item 317. Item 317, which at trial was known as Exhibit 470, was a black briefcase found near Jackson’s bed which contained adult magazines. The naturist magazines weren’t in that briefcase, they were found in boxes in the downstairs area of Jackson’s bedroom. Charlene Marie did not test the nudist magazines so her testimony is irrelevant.
The nudist magazines were hardly mentioned at trial because they did not contain DNA or fingerprints from the accusers.