Michael Jacksonâs doctor, Conrad Murray, pleaded not guilty Tuesday to a charge of involuntary manslaughter in the pop superstar’s death as the case moved rapidly toward a trial.
“Your honor, I am an innocent man,” Dr. Conrad Murray told the judge, according to the Associated Press. “I definitely plead not guilty.”
A judge previously ruled that Dr. Murray must stand trial in the criminal case after a six-day preliminary hearing. He is accused of giving Jackson a lethal dose of the powerful anesthetic propofol and other sedatives.
Lawyers for Murray believe in his innocence and plan to move forward without seeking a plea bargain, according to the AP. “We’re going to go to trial. I think our case is really solid. We were very pleased with the way the evidence went at the preliminary hearing … This should result in an acquittal.”
Deputy District Attorney David Walgren said the prosecution would be ready to go as well for the trial he estimated would last six weeks.
The trial is scheduled to begin March 28, with a pretrial hearing on February 7.