March 9th, 2005 Cross Examination of Star Arvizo, Direct Examination of Gavin Arvizo, Part 1 of 2
Mesereau continued his cross-examination of Star Arvizo by asking him to elaborate upon the time when he and his family were taken to a dentist’s office in February 2003 to have their braces removed. Mesereau asked if the dentist had telephones because he wanted to impress upon the jury the fact that, once again, the Arvizo family was out and about during their alleged “imprisonment”, yet made no attempts whatsoever to try to notify authorities!
THE COURT: You may proceed.MR. MESEREAU: Thank you, Your Honor.Q. Star, the day that your family leftNeverland with Jesus, do you remember that day?A. Yes.Q. And the driver’s name was Jesus Salas,right?A. I didn’t know his last name.Q. Okay. Were you with your mother that day?A. That entire day?Q. Yes.A. No.Q. Were you with your mother part of that day?A. Yes.Q. Were you with your mother when she went intoLos Olivos and had a body wax that day?A. I don’t remember that happening.Q. Okay. So you don’t know about that?A. No.Q. Okay. Do you recall being at Neverlandaround February 24th, 2003?A. I don’t know any of the dates.Q. Okay. Do you remember that your family wentfor a dental appointment?A. Yes.Q. And the dental appointment was with a Dr.Seamont, correct?A. I don’t remember the doctor’s name, but he1402was a dentist.Q. Okay. You, your mother, Gavin went to thedentist, right?A. Just me and my brother.Q. Pardon me. You and your brother?A. Yes.Q. Was your mother there?A. Yes.Q. Three of you, right?A. Yes.Q. Davellin wasn’t there, right?A. Yes, she went back to the ranch.Q. Okay. How did you get to the dentist’s?A. By car.Q. Do you know who drove you?A. A guy named Joe.Q. Okay. Was he working at Neverland?A. Yes.Q. Okay. And whose car was it; do you know?A. It was the cook’s car.Q. Okay.A. It’s a van.Q. Okay. And if you know, where was thedentist’s office?A. I don’t know.Q. Okay. Was it nearby, to your knowledge?A. We just drove there at night.Q. Drove there at night. Okay.And your mother wanted the dentist to removeGavin’s braces, right?A. And also mine.Q. And your braces, too?A. Yes.Q. Did the dentist remove your braces?A. Yes.Q. Did he remove Gavin’s braces?A. Yes.Q. Okay. And the driver dropped you all off atthe dentist’s office, right?A. No, he stood there with us.Q. Stood there with you in the dentist’soffice?A. Yes.Q. In the lobby? Or was he with you when youwere having your braces removed?A. He was there standing next to us.Q. When you had your braces removed?A. Yes.Q. Okay. Who paid for that dental visit; doyou know?A. I don’t know.Q. Okay. Did your mother tell the dentist topolish your teeth; do you know?A. It was a long time ago.Q. Don’t remember that?A. No.Q. Okay. Do you recall the dentist and hisassistant asking you and your brother not to go intothe dental supplies?A. That was long — it was long ago. I don’tremember.Q. Okay. Were there phones in the dentist’soffice?A. No.Q. Didn’t see any?A. There was probably some at the front desk.Q. Did you ever call your mother asking you touse the phone?A. No.
Next, Mesereau challenges Star about his previous grand jury testimony where he claimed that Gavin was looking outwards towards the far wall in Jackson’s bedroom as he was being abused, and that he saw Vodka in the room. Mesereau asked Star how he was able to determine that it was a bottle of Vodka if he only peered into the Jackson’s room for a few seconds, and the lights over Jackson’s bed were out, and Star said the lights from the stairwell were bright enough to shine into the room. Whatever!
Q. Okay. Let me get back to the grand jurytranscript. Okay?A. Okay.Q. Do you recall telling the Santa BarbaraGrand Jury that the first time you saw Mr. Jacksoninappropriately touch your brother, that yourbrother was looking out towards the far wall?A. Yes.Q. And what do you mean by that?A. If you’re looking at the bed —Q. Oh.A. — like the picture we saw earlier —Q. Sure.A. — he was facing to the right.Q. Okay. So correct me if I’m wrong, you said 1406Mr. Jackson was lying flat, right?A. Yes, on his back.Q. And he appeared to be sleeping or —A. Who?Q. Mr. Jackson appeared to be sleeping,correct?A. No. No.Q. Didn’t appear to be sleeping?A. He had his eyes closed, but he wasmasturbating.Q. Okay. So his eyes are closed. You sayMr. Jackson is masturbating, you say your brother isturned towards the far wall —A. Yes.Q. — right? And you’re saying Mr. Jackson hashis arm over your brother turned towards the farwall, right?A. Yes.Q. And Mr. Jackson is moving his hand, right?A. Yes.Q. Now, when you were speaking to the grandjury, you said there was vodka around, right?A. Yes.Q. Well, if you went up the stairs, there’s nolight over the bed, and you only see what you seefor a few seconds, how do you see vodka?A. The light from the stairwell, it wasn’t justone light. It was like two lights or something like 1407that. But it was bright enough to shine into theroom.Q. Okay. So you see all of this in a fewseconds, with all the lights out over the bed,correct?A. Yes.
Next, Mesereau questions Star about additional memory lapses that he experienced in between his grand jury and direct examination testimonies! For example, Mesereau asked why Star couldn’t remember whether or not he and his mother Janet ever had a conversation about wanting to leave the ranch, why Star initially said that Jackson’s bedroom door was open, and then said it was merely “unlocked”, whether or not Star told anyone about what he witnessed Jackson allegedly doing to Gavin, and whether or not Dr. Farshsian was facing Jackson during their trip from Miami to Neverland. Star testified previously that he witnessed Jackson licking Gavin’s head on that flight, so by having Star confirm that Dr. Farshsian was facing Jackson, Star contradicted his own story!
Q. So your memory’s better now than it was whenyou testified before the Santa Barbara Grand Jury?A. No, after you testify, you remember somethings that you didn’t say; that you forgot to say.Q. Okay. So your memory is better today thanit was March 29th, 2004, right?MR. SNEDDON: Object as argumentative, YourHonor.THE COURT: Sustained.Q. BY MR. MESEREAU: Did you ever talk to yourbrother or sister about leaving the ranch?A. No.Q. Just another question about the door leadingup to the stairwell to Michael’s bedroom. You wereasked questions about that while you were in frontof the Santa Barbara Grand Jury, correct?A. Okay. 1409Q. You were asked questions by the prosecution?A. Yes.Q. And do you remember being asked thefollowing question: “Now, on both occasion — onthe first occasion, you said the door was sort oflocked and it came loose. On the second occasion,can you tell us whether or not that door was open orclosed?”And your answer was, “It was open. Well,the door was closed, but it was unlocked.”Why did you begin by saying, “It was open”?A. Like the lock wasn’t locked.Q. Your answer began with the words, “It wasopen.”A. Yeah. The door —Q. Was it open?A. If it was unlocked, yes.Q. Okay. So you didn’t mean the door was open.A. Yes.Q. You just meant it was unlocked?A. Yes.Q. Okay. You told the Santa Barbara Grand Jurythat the first time you saw Michael Jacksoninappropriately touching your brother, you had aboutfive or six seconds, and the second time three orfour seconds, right?A. Yes.Q. And you told them both times the light was 1410out above the bed?A. Yes.Q. Now, on both of these occasions that you’vedescribed as Mr. Michael Jackson inappropriatelytouching your brother, did your brother ever move?A. No.Q. Do you know someone named Kiki —A. Yes.Q. — who works at Neverland? Who’s Kiki?A. She’s a — I don’t know what her — she’s ahouse-cleaning lady.Q. Did you have a dispute with her?A. No. We’re friends.Q. Okay. You’re friends to this day?A. I don’t know. I haven’t talked to her.Q. Okay. When did you last see her?A. At Neverland.Q. Pardon me?A. At Neverland.Q. Do you know when you last spoke to her?A. At Neverland.Q. Okay. So that’s quite a while ago, right?A. Yes.Q. You told the Santa Barbara Grand Jury thaton a flight coming back from Miami, Dr. Farshshianwas facing Michael Jackson, right?A. Yes.Q. So he would have been facing Michael Jackson 1411when you claim Michael started licking yourbrother’s hair, right?A. No, my mom was — she was turned around mostof the time.Q. No, I’m talking about Dr. Farshshian.A. Oh, yes.Q. He was facing Michael Jackson the wholetime?A. Yes.Q. Okay. Now, you never reported either ofthese two times you claim Mr. Jackson wasinappropriately touching your brother, right?MR. SNEDDON: I’m going to object as vagueas to time.MR. MESEREAU: I’ll rephrase it. He’sright.Q. You didn’t immediately go to your mother andreport that, did you, when you saw it happen?A. No.Q. You didn’t immediately go to your father andreport it, right?A. My dad wasn’t there.Q. You didn’t immediately tell Davellin aboutit, right?A. No.
Here is another lie that Star was caught in: in this excerpt, Star claims that there was no discussion about where he and Gavin would sleep during their first stay at Neverland in 2000, as his family ate dinner with Jackson at his dinner table:
Q. Okay. When your father was with you atNeverland, did you ever sleep in Michael Jackson’sroom?A. Yes.Q. How many times?A. Once.Q. That was the first time you visitedNeverland, right?A. Yes.Q. And every other time your father was there,you didn’t sleep in Michael’s room, correct?A. Yes.Q. But you’re saying the first time you visitedNeverland, your father let you sleep in Michael’sroom?A. Yes.Q. Was your mother there on that trip?A. Yes.Q. Did your mother let you sleep in Michael’sroom?A. She was probably with my sister. We justasked our dad.1413Q. Well, you all had dinner in the main housethat night, right?A. Yes.Q. Was there a discussion at the dinner tableabout whether or not you and Gavin could sleep inMichael Jackson’s room?A. No.
However, in his opening statement, Sneddon stated that Jackson asked Gavin to ask his parents if he could sleep in his bedroom as they ate dinner at the dinner table!
10 Now, on the night before the last day that11 they were to leave, Michael Jackson, the defendant12 in this case, takes Gavin aside, and he says to13 Gavin, “Gavin, why don’t you ask your parents if you14 can spend the night in my bedroom, at the dinner15 table tonight.”16 Well, obviously here’s a little kid who’s in17 the midst of a life-threatening disease —18 MR. MESEREAU: Objection.19 MR. SNEDDON: — a chance to spend the20 night —21 MR. MESEREAU: Objection.22 THE COURT: Overruled. Go ahead.23 MR. SNEDDON: — the chance to spend the24 night with one of his idols. Gavin obliges. Gavin25 asks his parents at dinner, “Can I spend the night26 with Michael Jackson in his bedroom.”27 And the parents say, “Yes”; they agree. And28 it’s agreed that Star will go along with them. 38
And here is what Davellin had to say during her direct examination:
21 Q. Okay. Now, correct me if I’m wrong, did you22 tell the jury that the first day you arrived at23 Neverland, you all had dinner in the main house.24 A. Yes.25 Q. And your father, your mother, Star, Gavin26 and you had dinner in the main dining room in that27 main house, right.28 A. Yes. 844 1 Q. And was Michael Jackson there.2 A. Yes.3 Q. Was anyone else there.4 A. Not that I remember.5 Q. There was certainly kitchen help around,6 right.7 A. Well, they would come in and out.8 Q. Right. And that was the first time your9 family ever had dinner with Michael Jackson, right.10 A. Yes.11 Q. And without going into what anyone said, did12 you tell the jury yesterday that the first time you13 had dinner with Michael Jackson and the family, you14 discussed whether Gavin was going to stay in the15 main house.16 A. Yeah. At that dinner, yes.17 Q. The first time you ever had dinner with him.18 A. Yes.12 Now, you told the jury that the first night13 you and your family were at Neverland, you had14 dinner in the main dining room and discussed whether15 or not Gavin was going to sleep in Michael Jackson’s16 bedroom, right.17 A. Yes.18 Q. Now, that was the first day you’d ever met19 Michael Jackson, right.20 A. Yes.21 Q. You had arrived in the afternoon, right.22 A. Yes.23 Q. You said you had played at Neverland with24 your brothers that afternoon, right.25 A. I don’t remember what we did. All I26 remember is me meeting him, and the rooms, and that27 we ate dinner that day.28 Q. So would you say you were there a couple of 852 1 hours before you had dinner.2 A. Yeah.3 Q. Okay. Was your mother in the dining room.4 A. Yes, we were all in the dining room.5 Q. And the subject at dinner came up, “Will6 Gavin sleep in Michael’s bedroom,” the first dinner.7 A. Yes, Gavin brought it up in the dining room,8 yes.9 Q. Okay. To your knowledge, did your father10 approve.11 A. I don’t remember. I think he did.12 Q. To your knowledge, did your mother approve.13 A. Yeah, I think she did.14 Q. Okay. When you met with the social workers,15 did you tell them that your father and mother had16 approved Gavin sleeping in Michael Jackson’s bedroom17 the first time you were at Neverland.18 A. If they had asked me, I probably would have19 said, “Yes.”20 Q. Because you would have told them the truth21 that day.22 A. Yes, well, on certain things. Because —23 Q. You would have told them the truth about24 certain things, but not other things, right.25 A. Well, yeah, because you already kind of knew26 not to say what went on at Neverland.27 Q. So you would have lied about some things and28 not lied about other things, depending on what you 853 1 were asked, right.2 A. Yeah.
In this excerpt, Mesereau begins to impeach Star with his previous grand jury statements about not talking to his mother about where he and Gavin would sleep at while at Neverland:
Q. Okay. Did your mother at any time when shewas at Neverland ever ask you where you weresleeping in the main house?A. I don’t remember. I don’t remember.Q. Okay. Do you remember telling the SantaBarbara Grand Jury that your mother never asked youone time where you were sleeping in the main house?A. I don’t know if I did.Q. Would it refresh your recollection if I justshow you the page from the grand jury transcript?A. Okay.MR. MESEREAU: May I, Your Honor?THE COURT: Yes.Q. BY MR. MESEREAU: Have you had a chance tolook at that page of the grand jury transcript?A. Yes.Q. Does it refresh your recollection about whatyou told the Santa Barbara Grand Jury?A. Yes. I said, “I think so. I don’tremember,” on the transcript.Q. Well, you said in response to the question, 1414“Did your mother ever ask you where you weresleeping inside the main house?” You said, “No.”A. And right below it, it says, “I think so. Idon’t remember.”Q. Do you know, or not?A. No.Q. It says, “Did you ever have a conversationwith” —And you go, “Wait. I think so. I don’tremember.”Is that what you’re referring to?A. Yes.Q. Okay. But you’re not sure if you did?A. Yes.Q. You never did at the dinner table, though?A. No.Q. Well, then we went further, Star. It saysyou said, “No,” and you said, “I think so.”“Let me ask the question again: Did yourmother ever talk with you about where you sleptinside the main house?“A. No.”A. But I don’t think so. I don’t reallyremember.Q. Okay. You don’t remember saying that to thegrand jury, or you don’t remember if you talked toyour mom about it?A. I don’t remember if I talked to my mom about 1415it.MR. MESEREAU: Okay. I think I’ve alreadydone so, Your Honor, but I think I’d like to readthat portion of the grand jury —THE COURT: Give me that citation. I havethe transcript now.MR. MESEREAU: Yes, Your Honor. It’s page1585. Actually, let me start before that. It’spage 1584, lines 22 to 28, and page 1585, lines 1to 6.MR. SNEDDON: The second page, how far didyou end up?THE COURT: Do you have a volume?MR. MESEREAU: Yes, I think I do. It wouldbe Volume 6. No, it’s Volume 7.THE COURT: I have it. Thank you.MR. MESEREAU: Okay. Thank you, Your Honor.“Q. Did your mother ever ask you where youwere sleeping inside the main house?“A. No.“Q. Did you ever have a conversation with —“A. Wait. I think so. I don’t remember.“Q. I’m sorry?“A. I think so. I don’t remember.“Q. I don’t?“A. I think so. I don’t remember.“Q. You said ‘No,’ and you said, ‘I thinkso.’ Let me ask the question again: Did your 1416mother ever talk with you about where you sleptinside the main house?“A. No.”
After a long debate about whether Star remembered filming the “Neverland Channel” with Gavin, Mesereau began to question Star about statements that he made during the filming of the rebuttal video. Mesereau would play the tape in court, stop it, ask questions about Star’s statements, and then pick up where he left off on the tape. For example, in this excerpt, Star claims the positive statements he said about Jackson in the tape were actually meant for his stepfather Jay Jackson!
MR. MESEREAU: At this point, Your Honor,we’d like to play the rebuttal video, which is inevidence.THE COURT: All right.MR. MESEREAU: Thank you.MR. SANGER: For the record, that would beExhibit 340 and we’re going to start with Tape 1of 2. Actually, it says Tape 1 of 2, but it wouldbe DVD 1 of 2.THE BAILIFF: I’m not sure if that’s —MR. SANGER: That’s on the film.THE BAILIFF: Oh.MR. SANGER: It will be over in a second.Sorry.(Whereupon, a portion of a DVD, People’sExhibit 340, Disk 1, was played for the Court andjury.)Q. BY MR. MESEREAU: Now, Star, when you madethose comments, were you telling the truth?A. No.Q. Were you lying?A. I was actually talking about my stepdad.Q. You weren’t talking about Michael Jackson? 1431A. No; how Jay stepped in and took over wheremy dad left off.Q. So when you said, “My first impression waslike a father. He actually seemed morefatherly-like than my biological father. He —there is — I just — that was my first impressionof Michael,” you were really talking about JayJackson?A. Yes, sir.Q. Why did you use the name “Michael”?A. Well, because he told us to say good thingsonly about — because he told us only to say goodthings about Michael.Q. Okay. So you really were referring to JayJackson?A. Exactly.Q. I see. Okay.We can keep going through.
Star goes on to say that he wasn’t paying attention to his mother’s statements about Jackson:
(Whereupon, a portion of a DVD, People’sExhibit 340, Disk 1, was played for the Court andjury.)Q. BY MR. MESEREAU: Now, Star, when you heardyour mother make those comments about MichaelJackson, did you think she was talking about JayJackson?A. I wasn’t really listening. I was likepractically falling off my chair.Q. So you didn’t really hear any of this? 1432A. No, I was really sleepy. It was like 4:00in the morning.Q. So you really don’t know what your motherwas talking about?A. No. I —Q. Okay. We can keep going.
In the next few excerpts, Star claims that he lied when he made the following statements: that Jackson helped Gavin with his homework, that Jackson made him feel like a son, that Jackson let him and Gavin call him “father”, that Jackson helped his family with anything that they ask, and that Jackson “claimed these three little munchkins as his kids”. Star claimed that everything his family said about Jackson came from Dieter Wiesner:
(Whereupon, a portion of a DVD, People’sExhibit 340, Disk 1, was played for the Court andjury.)Q. BY MR. MESEREAU: Now, you said — Davellinsays about Michael, “He gives Gavin advice,” andthen you say, “He helps me with homework,” right?A. Okay.Q. Was that the truth?A. No. We didn’t even have homework.Q. Was that a lie?A. Yes.Q. We can keep going.(Whereupon, a portion of a DVD, People’sExhibit 340, Disk 1, was played for the Court andjury.)Q. BY MR. MESEREAU: Star, do you remembermaking those comments about Michael Jackson?A. Sure.Q. Were you telling the truth?A. No, not really.Q. Were you lying?A. Yeah. On there, yes. 1433Q. So you were lying.So when you said Michael lets you feel likehis son, you weren’t telling the truth?A. Yes.Q. And when you said he lets you call him“father,” you weren’t telling the truth?A. Yes.Q. “And we call him ‘father’ and he calls us‘son,'” you weren’t telling the truth?A. Yes.Q. And you say, “He helps us with basicallyanything we ask and we love him.” When you saidthat, you weren’t telling the truth, right?A. Repeat it.Q. “He helps us with basically anything we askand we love him.” You’re saying you weren’t tellingthe truth?A. Yes. The only reason why we did that isbecause Dieter told us to.Q. So everybody just memorized all these lines?A. I just said whatever came to my head.Q. Okay. Okay.A. I was trying to get out of there. I waskind of tired.Q. I understand. So, so far every statementyou’ve made is a lie, you’re saying, right?A. Basically, yes.MR. MESEREAU: Okay. We can keep going. 1434(Whereupon, a portion of a DVD, People’sExhibit 340, Disk 1, was played for the Court andjury.)Q. BY MR. MESEREAU: Star, you heard yourmother make those remarks, right?A. Yes.Q. Did you think she was lying?A. I wasn’t really paying attention.Q. Pardon me?A. Um, I don’t know.Q. You don’t know, right?A. Yeah, I can’t speak for her.Q. I’m just asking what you thought. Did youthink your mother was telling lies when she madethat statement?A. I wasn’t really paying attention.Q. Okay.(Whereupon, a portion of a DVD, People’sExhibit 340, Disk 1, was played for the Court andjury.)Q. BY MR. MESEREAU: Now, Star, when you heardyour mother make the statement, “He claimed thesethree little munchkins as his kids,” did you thinkyour mother was telling the truth?A. Um, no.Q. Did you think your mother was lying?A. No, she was doing what Dieter asked her todo.1435Q. Did you think she was lying?A. No, she was doing what Dieter asked her todo.Q. So you don’t think your mother was acting ina spontaneous kind of way when she answered thesequestions, right?A. I don’t know. It was her emotions.Q. Okay.(Whereupon, a portion of a DVD, People’sExhibit 340, Disk 1, was played for the Court andjury.)Q. BY MR. MESEREAU: Star, did you ever discusswith your mother the idea that Michael Jackson wouldbe a father figure to you?A. To me?Q. Yes.A. No.Q. Did you ever discuss with your mother thenotion that Michael Jackson would be a father figureto Gavin?A. No.Q. Ever discuss with your mother the idea thatMichael Jackson would be a father figure for yoursister?A. No.Q. So you and your mother never talked aboutMichael Jackson being any kind of a father figure atall, right? 1436A. Yes.MR. MESEREAU: Okay. Keep going.(Whereupon, a portion of a DVD, People’sExhibit 340, Disk 1, was played for the Court andjury.)Q. BY MR. MESEREAU: Now, Star, are you tellingthe jury, under oath, you never heard MichaelJackson ever mention anything about Pac Man to yourbrother?A. No. I was yawning in the video —Q. Pardon me?A. I don’t remember even hearing that.Q. Okay.(Whereupon, a portion of a DVD, People’sExhibit 340, Disk 1, was played for the Court andjury.)MR. SANGER: Your Honor, that’s — actually,that does that, and that’s the end of this tape, soI’m going to stop it, if that’s all right.THE COURT: Yes.
Mesereau continued to ask more questions to Star about his family’s statements during the rebuttal video. Star said that the “gang signs” that Janet referred to were from someone behind the cameraman:
(Whereupon, a portion of a DVD, People’sExhibit 340, Disk 2, was played for the Court andjury.)Q. BY MR. MESEREAU: Star, do you know whatyour mother is referring to when she mentioned “gangsigns”?A. Probably the guy behind the camera was doingsomething.Q. You say “probably.” Is that something youthought at the time? 1438A. At that time?Q. Yes.A. No. I was just thinking about sleep.Q. Did you think your mother was talking abouta cameraman making gang signs? Is that what she wassaying?A. She was pointing at off camera, so itcouldn’t be the cameraman. It had to be someoneelse.Q. Okay. Let me just get this straight. Youthink she was talking about the cameraman —A. No, I know she was talking about not thecameraman, but someone off camera.Q. Making gang signs?A. They probably weren’t even doing gang signs.He was probably doing a signal or something. Idon’t know.Q. But I think what you’re saying is you don’tknow what she was referring to, right?A. No.Q. Now, was it your — are you telling the jurythat while all this was going on, your family wasbeing falsely imprisoned?MR. SNEDDON: Objection. Argumentative,Your Honor. It’s a legal conclusion using thosewords.THE COURT: Sustained.Q. BY MR. MESEREAU: Do you feel that while 1439this was all going on, your family was not free toleave?A. Yes.Q. Okay. And do you think the way your motherwas acting, that she was in fear?A. I don’t know. I can’t speak for her.Q. Were you in fear?A. I was just sleepy.Q. Okay. All right.(Whereupon, a portion of a DVD, People’sExhibit 340, Disk 2, was played for the Court andjury.)THE COURT: Hold on, please. Take our break.MR. MESEREAU: Yes, Your Honor.(Recess taken.)THE COURT: Go ahead.MR. MESEREAU: Thank you, Your Honor. Oops.THE COURT: Do you want me to — are youready to continue with the film?MR. MESEREAU: Yes, please, Your Honor.(Whereupon, a portion of a DVD, People’sExhibit 340, Disk 2, was played for the Court andjury.)Q. BY MR. MESEREAU: Star, the person who’sdoing the interview says, “Davellin, Star, when youguys first went to the ranch, I’m sure you werepretty down.”When you first went to Neverland Ranch, were 1440you pretty down?A. The first ever time?Q. Yes.A. Yes.Q. And you were down because your brother wasill, right?A. Yes.MR. MESEREAU: Keep going.(Whereupon, a portion of a DVD, People’sExhibit 340, Disk 2, was played for the Court andjury.)Q. BY MR. MESEREAU: Now, Star, when you madethat statement, were you telling the truth?A. What was the statement?Q. The statement was, “The first time beforeour brother ever went to the ranch, he was alwayssad, he was always crying, he was always just downall the time. When he went to the ranch, he wasalways happy. He was always playful. He was happyagain. He was cheerful, and it also gave himsomething to look forward when we left.”Was that a true statement?A. It was kind of true, because my brother wassad and — what’s the other word I used? Well, hewas sad and down, because he was going through alife-threatening disease.Q. And he was happy at the ranch, correct?A. Yes. In the beginning, yes. 1441Q. Okay.(Whereupon, a portion of a DVD, People’sExhibit 340, Disk 2, was played for the Court andjury.)Q. BY MR. MESEREAU: At this point, Star,you’re trying to speak out, correct?A. No. I was just saying I was sleepy.Q. Well, he said he can hear you, Star, right?A. Yeah. I was complaining.Q. Was it your understanding that this film wassupposed to be on a television show?A. No.Q. Did you ever learn that this film wassupposed to appear on FOX Television?A. No.Q. Okay.We can go forward.
In order to show that the Arvizo children consistently called the people that they tried to solicit money from “father” and “mother”, Mesereau asked Star to look at several greeting cards that were sent by his family to comedian Louise Palanker. Star denied writing the cards, or ever calling Louise “mommy”. Mesereau was trying to show the jury that the Arvizo children had a habit of calling the people that they attached themselves to “Mommy” and “Daddy”, and by doing this it would prove to the jury that the Arvizos lied when they said they were forced to call Jackson “daddy” in the rebuttal video:
Q. BY MR. MESEREAU: — you have sent greetingcards from time to time?A. Your microphone’s not on.Q. Excuse me? You’re right.THE COURT: They’re having trouble hearingyou.MR. MESEREAU: You’re right.Q. You have sent greeting cards from time totime to people whom you asked for money, true? 1444MR. SNEDDON: Object; assumes facts not inevidence.THE COURT: Sustained.Q. BY MR. MESEREAU: The language that you hearon that rebuttal tape is language similar tolanguage you have used in greeting cards to peopleyou were seeking money from, right?A. We were never seeking —MR. SNEDDON: Object, Your Honor. I object.Assumes facts not in evidence.MR. MESEREAU: I’ll start again.Q. Do you know Louise Palanker?A. Yes.Q. How long have you known Louise Palanker?A. Since the comedy camp.Q. Are you still in touch with her?A. Yes.Q. When did you last talk to Louise Palanker?A. I think my sister talked to her. I haven’ttalked to her since — I don’t know exactly. But itwas — it was within this year. Well —Q. You — I’m sorry.A. It was within the last year.Q. Okay. You sent Louise Palanker greetingcards and you called her “Mommy,” correct?A. I don’t remember doing that.Q. Would it refresh your recollection if yousee a greeting card that you signed? 1445A. Sure.MR. SANGER: I take it Your Honor has it onthe one where —THE COURT: I have it on “1.” Do you want meto try it on “4”?MR. SANGER: May as well.THE COURT: That’s “4.”(Off-the-record discussion held at counseltable.)MR. SNEDDON: I have a suggestion.THE COURT: Yes.MR. SNEDDON: Since he’s only asking him torefresh his recollection, just take the computer andshow it to him.MR. MESEREAU: We’ve moved it into evidence,Your Honor. I’d like the jury to see it, if we can.THE COURT: It is in evidence.THE BAILIFF: It will just be a minute.THE COURT: Do you have a technician coming?THE BAILIFF: We do.THE COURT: There’s someone coming to help.I remember when an attorney just had to beable to come into court and talk.(Laughter.)THE COURT: Now they’re frozen if themachine doesn’t work.MR. SANGER: I understand there’s somebodycoming down in one second. 1446THE COURT: Yes, somebody’s been —MR. MESEREAU: I can ask a few questions inthe meantime, if you’d like, Your Honor.THE COURT: That would be good.Q. BY MR. MESEREAU: Do you know whether or notLouise Palanker gave $20,000 to your family?A. I know that she gave it to my dad, yeah.Q. Do you know what the purpose for giving thatmoney was?A. To fix my brother’s bedroom at my grandma’shouse, so he can live in it.THE COURT: Would you like to wait just amoment, so —MR. MESEREAU: Sure.THE COURT: It would be better to let thetechnician….(Off-the-record discussion held at counseltable.)MR. SANGER: Oh, how about that?Your Honor, I just learned something new.THE BAILIFF: So everything is ready.THE COURT: Yes. Thank you.THE TECHNICIAN: No problem.Q. BY MR. MESEREAU: You asked Louise Palankerfor a computer, didn’t you?A. No. That’s not my writing.Q. We’ll get to that. There’s some otherpages. 1447A. Okay.Q. Did you ever ask Louise Palanker for acomputer?A. Never.Q. Are you aware of anyone else in your familyasking Louise for a computer?A. No.Q. Ever get a computer from Louise, to yourknowledge?A. No.Q. Okay. Now, I want to show you this card.It says, “From your boys and girl, Louise Mommy.”Do you see that?A. Yes.Q. It says, “You’re smiling when I’m happy andyou hug me when I’m hurt.” Do you see that?A. Yes.Q. Did you call Louise “Mommy”?A. Looks like my sister’s writing.Q. Let me ask you if you called her “Mommy,”ever?A. No.Q. Did you ever hear your sister or Gavin callher “Mommy”?A. No.Q. Do you know why a card was sent to her thatsaid “Mommy”?A. I don’t know. 1448Q. Okay.Let’s go to some other pages, if we can,Bob. Thanks.Now, who is in that picture?A. Me, my brother, my sister.Q. Okay. Do you know approximately when thosephotos were taken?A. When my sister was in the Los AngelesExplorers.Q. Okay. Do you know about what year that is?A. No.Q. Okay. Okay. Let’s look at this, then.Do you see the message at the bottom?A. Okay.Q. It says, “Dear Louise, I think of you everysecond of my like (sic) and pray for every night,every morning. I love you. I wish I can spend timewith you. Love, Star,” right?A. I misspelled “life.”Q. That’s your writing, though, isn’t it?A. Yeah.Q. Okay. The question I have is, you see amessage from Gavin and a message from Davellin,right?A. Okay.Q. And why is everybody calling her “Mommy”; doyou know?MR. SNEDDON: Your Honor, I’m going to 1449object to that question.MR. MESEREAU: Excuse me, I’ll rephrase it.Q. Do you have any idea why the card isaddressed to “Mommy”?A. “Mommy’s” not —Q. Pardon me?A. “Mommy’s” not in my letter.Q. I’m asking about the card.A. I don’t know what’s written on there.Doesn’t look like my writing.Q. Did you see the card before you wrote on it,if you remember?A. No.Q. But did you refer to her as “Mommy” ever?A. No.MR. SNEDDON: Asked and answered, YourHonor.THE COURT: Sustained.Q. BY MR. MESEREAU: Okay. Let’s go to thenext card. Okay. Now, this is another card.A. Okay.Q. It says, “Dear Louise, once I see you, myday is wonderful. Louise, I miss you. I love you.Every day I want to be with you. Thank you. I loveyou. Love, Star.” Do you see that?A. Yes.Q. Did you often send cards to Louise?A. Not really. 1450Q. Do you remember how many you might havesent?A. No.Q. Okay. Keep going.Do you see that card, Star?A. Yes.Q. It says, “Our darling Louise, Wheezy.” Doyou see that?A. Yes.Q. And that says, “We dearly love you and careabout you. We love you to the moon and back.Faithfully, devotedly, your friends, your family,Davellin, David, Gavin, Janet, Star.” Do you seethat?A. Yes.Q. Did you used to refer to Louise as being inyour family?A. Not really. Just my brother probably did,because she was with my brother during the wholecancer.Q. The question I want to ask you is this: Didyou typically call people “family” that your motherwas seeking funds from?A. My mom was never seeking funds from —Q. She never did that with anybody?A. No.Q. Not Chris Tucker?A. No. 1451Q. Not Louise?A. No. You can even ask Louise. My dad wasthe one trying to seek funds from her.Q. And your mother was never involved in thatat all?A. No.Q. How about with Jay Leno?A. I’ve never met Jay Leno in my life.Q. Are you aware of your mother ever seekingfunds from him?A. No.MR. MESEREAU: Okay. I have no furtherquestions.
And with that, Mesereau ended his initial cross-examination, and Sneddon immediately began his redirect-examination by asking Star to describe Jackson’s room, confirm what he saw in photographs that were taken during the Neverland raid, and to describe how he was able to use the key code combinations to enter different rooms at Neverland.
Interestingly, Sneddon asked Star about Jackson’s alleged abuse of Gavin that he twice witnessed from the stairwell; however, in both his initial interview with police, and his grand jury testimony, Star said that he witnessed THREE instances of abuse, the third instance being witnessed as Star pretended to be sleeping in Jackson’s bedroom. Sneddon only mentioned the first two incidents during his opening statement!
Q. And did you also tell the sheriff’sdepartment that there were two other incidents thatyou saw Mr. Jackson on the bed with your brother?A. Yes.MR. MESEREAU: Objection; leading.THE COURT: Overruled.THE WITNESS: Yes.THE COURT: The answer was in.Q. BY MR. SNEDDON: So you told them there wereactually three incidents that occurred?A. Yes.Q. And you told them that in the initialinterview; isn’t that correct?A. Yes.Q. And you also testified to that at the grandjury, did you not?A. Yes.Q. You testified to all three incidents?A. Yes.Q. So there was two you saw on the stairs, andone you saw when you were in the bedroom?A. Yes. 1465Q. Now, with regard to the time that you sawMr. Jackson on the bed with your brother, okay?A. Okay.Q. And that you’ve described to the jury withMr. Jackson’s hand inside your brother’s privateparts, okay?A. Okay.Q. Now, did you have any difficulty seeing whatwas going on?A. No.Q. Could you see their eyes?A. A little bit, yes.Q. Could you tell whether or not in the firstincident, whether or not your brother’s eyes wereopened or closed?A. His head was facing down, and I saw hiseyes. They were closed.Q. And with regard to Mr. Jackson in the firstincident, did you see whether his eyes were open orclosed?A. His eyes were closed.Q. And in the second — well, in the firstincident, I think you indicated that you — well,let me just do it the other way.When you said that you had seen alcohol inMr. Jackson’s room before —A. Yes.Q. — on the first incident when you went up 1466there and you saw Mr. Jackson on the bed next toyour brother and your brother curled up, did you seealcohol on that occasion?A. Yes.Q. And where was it in the room?A. It was the nightstand next to the bed.Q. On which side?A. My brother’s side.Q. So you had no difficulty seeing the alcoholon the nightstand?A. No.
Finally, Sneddon asked Star to clear up an earlier statement to the grand jury about him not seeing Jackson touch Gavin’s genital area. When Star made that statement, he claimed that he was speaking in reference to when he and his family ate dinner with Jackson at his dinner table in 2000:
Q. Now, you were asked by Mr. Mesereau to lookat a section of the transcript during your grandjury testimony about whether you saw Mr. Jacksonfiddling with your brother’s shirts or otherwisetouching him. Do you recall him asking you that?A. Yes.Q. And then you were asked a question by Mr.Mesereau, where you said — there was a question,“He would be touching him a lot?”“Yeah.”And then you said, “Not his genitals. Nothis penis. I never saw that.” Okay?A. Yes.Q. What were you referring to in connectionwith that statement in relationship to theinformation you had just talked about?A. I was talking about at the table. 1467Q. At the what?A. At the table.Q. Is that where that incident occurred?A. Yes.Q. So you didn’t see him touch your brother’sprivates or genitals at the table?A. Yes.Q. Star, is there any doubt in your mind as towhat you saw with regard to your brother and thedefendant while they were laying on the bed on thetwo occasions you testified to the ladies andgentlemen of the jury?A. No.Q. Was it the truth?A. Yes.MR. SNEDDON: I have no further questions,Your Honor.THE COURT: Recross?MR. MESEREAU: Very briefly, Your Honor.If I may take a second.THE COURT: Yes.
Mesereau began his recross-examination by asking Star if he was honest in everything he said to the jury, the grand jury, and the police officers who interviewed him, and Star claimed that he never lied to any of them.
RECROSS-EXAMINATIONBY MR. MESEREAU:Q. Have you told the truth throughout yourtestimony in this courtroom?A. Yes.Q. Have you told any lie at all? 1468A. No.Q. Did you tell the truth to the grand jury?A. Yes.Q. Ever tell any lie to the grand jury?A. No.Q. Did you tell the truth to the police everytime you interviewed with them?A. Yes.Q. Ever tell them any lies?A. No. No.Q. Have you ever lied before?A. Yes.
Next, Mesereau asked Star how he could possibly guess that the stairway to Jackson’s bedroom had 17 stairs, and he asked if anyone from the prosecutor’s office told him to say that, and of course Star denied it. Star also claimed that he only counts stairs that are straight up and down, not curved! This exchange generated a hearty laugh from the courtroom (as it is clearly noted in the transcript!):
THE COURT: Go ahead, Counsel.MR. MESEREAU: Thank you, Your Honor.Q. Star, you said there were 17 stairs, right?A. Give or take a few, yes.Q. Did you count them?A. Over time, yeah.Q. What do you mean, “over time”?A. We stood there for a long time.Q. Well, I’m asking you, did you count thestairs? 1469A. Yeah.Q. How did you come up with the number “17”?A. I don’t know.Q. Pardon me?A. Most stairs like that have 17 stairs.Q. Most stairs like that have 17 stairs?A. Well, most stairways like that have 17stairs.Q. How do you know that?A. Because my house has 17 stairs.Q. Did someone from the prosecution team tellyou there was 17 stairs?A. No, they — no, I just knew there were 17stairs.Q. Did someone from the sheriff’s departmenttell you there were 17 stairs?A. No.Q. Did you actually count those stairs?A. Yes.Q. When?A. I don’t know the exact date. But I remembercounting them.Q. When you were at Neverland?A. Yes.Q. And what was the purpose for counting them?A. I don’t know. I do that at every house I goto with stairs. I just count the stairs.Q. So you’re a compulsive stair-counter? 1470A. No. I just count the stairs.Q. Is that one of your hobbies also?A. No, my other hobby’s building airplanes,model airplanes.Q. In none of the police reports do you mention“17 stairs,” correct?A. No.Q. Before the grand jury, you never mentioned“17 stairs,” correct?A. Yes.Q. But you’re saying years ago, you counted 17stairs, right?A. Yes, I just remember the number.Q. You did it just for fun, right?A. Yeah. Just happened to count them.Q. Okay. Now, you gave an eight-feet figure.Remember that?A. Yeah.Q. How did you figure out eight feet —A. I don’t know. It looked like eight feet, soI just said —Q. Did you measure that also?A. No.Q. Okay. You just kind of guessed?A. Well, I don’t know. Yeah.Q. Did the prosecutor ever tell you eight feet?A. No.Q. Did any member of the sheriff’s department 1471ever tell you to say eight feet?A. No.Q. How many stairs are there in the main houseleading to the kids’ room?A. Let’s see. Six — I don’t know exactlyhow —Q. You didn’t count them?A. No. They’re not in a straight line, so Ididn’t count them.(Laughter.)Q. So when you count stairs, you only do itwhen they’re in a straight line?A. When they’re straight.Q. Okay. You didn’t count those stairs, didyou?A. I did count those stairs.
Next, Mesereau questioned Star about whether he ever rode any of Jackson’s ATV’s off the Neverland property and into the Los Olivos community:
Q. You mentioned you some rode ATV’s, right?A. Yes.Q. And you and your brother used to ride —rode ATV’s on the ranch, right?A. Until someone got lost in the mountains,so….Q. You actually rode those ATV’s into LosOlivos one day, didn’t you?A. We never left the ranch.Q. Huh?A. We never left the ranch.Q. Well, you were caught in Los Olivos with1472them, weren’t you?A. By who?Q. By someone who works on the ranch.A. No, it’s not true.Q. Never went off the property on the ATV’s?A. No.Q. Never were caught by anybody?A. No.
Next, Mesereau asked Star about the time that he threatened a Neverland cook with a knife after he was caught in the kitchen, when he had been instructed not to go in there:
Q. Now, you were not supposed to be in thekitchen cooking, correct?A. The cooks encouraged me to cook.Q. You were confronted by Kiki one time aboutyou were not supposed to be in the kitchen, right?A. No.Q. You don’t recall that?A. No.Q. You don’t recall threatening Kiki with aknife when she confronted you in the kitchen?A. No.Q. Never happened?A. No.
Star is then questioned by Mesereau about his statements to the grand jury about not seeing Jackson touch Gavin’s genitals, but then limiting it to the kitchen table. Mesereau read an excerpt from Star’s grand jury testimony to him, and Star confirmed that he didn’t mention what context he meant when he denied seeing Jackson touch Gavin’s genitals. He also claimed that he never discussed what he would say about this statement with anyone from the prosecutors and sheriff’s office prior to his testimony today.
Q. Now, Prosecutor Sneddon asked you what youmeant when you told the grand jury you hadn’t seenMichael Jackson touch Gavin’s genitals or penis.Do you remember that?A. Yes.Q. And your response to Mr. Sneddon was, “Well,I was just talking about the dinner table,” right? 1473A. Yes.Q. How come you never mentioned “dinner table”to the grand jury when you made that statement?A. I don’t know if they asked me.Q. Well, let me just go through what you said.A. Okay.Q. Okay?“Q. What kind of things?“Fix his shirt.“Q. What else?“A. He looked like from — if you’restanding in front of him, it looked like he’strying to fix his shirt. But it’s hard toexplain. But he would like fix it, like he wouldtouch — well, it was weird.“Q. He would be touching him a lot?“A. Yeah.“Q. Not his genitals, not his penis?“A. I never saw that. But I saw it in thepaper.”A. I don’t know what I meant by “paper,” but Iwas trying to say that I didn’t see it that time.Q. But you never mentioned any kitchen table,right?A. But it wasn’t the kitchen table.Q. But you never mentioned any table at all,correct?A. I know. 1474Q. When did you come up with that explanation?MR. SNEDDON: Object; argumentative.THE COURT: Sustained.Q. BY MR. MESEREAU: Did you discuss withProsecutor Sneddon that you were going to be askedthat question?A. No.Q. Have you ever discussed the statement youmade to the grand jury about not seeing genitals orpenis; ever discuss that statement with Mr. Sneddon?A. No.Q. Ever discuss it with any prosecutor?A. No.Q. Ever discuss it with anyone in the sheriff’sdepartment?A. No.Q. You don’t mention that kitchen table in thiscontext anywhere in the police reports, do you?A. I don’t know.MR. SNEDDON: Your Honor, I’m going toobject. Assumes facts not in evidence as to — Iwon’t say anything.THE COURT: I don’t think he knows what’s inthe police reports, so —MR. MESEREAU: Okay. I’ll rephrase it, YourHonor.Q. In none of your police interviews do youever make that statement and say, “I’m limiting this 1475to what I saw at the kitchen table,” right?MR. SNEDDON: That’s what I’m objecting to.It assumes facts not in evidence as to the — I knowyou don’t want me to speak, but —THE COURT: I don’t want you to speak.MR. SNEDDON: All right. Then —THE COURT: I’ll allow the question. I’llhave it read back.(Record read.)THE WITNESS: No.Q. BY MR. MESEREAU: And in none of your policeinterviews do you limit that statement about notseeing genitals or penis touched to any table,right?A. No.Q. Today is the first time you ever limitedthat statement to what you saw at a table, correct?A. I don’t — yes.
This is the final and most explosive excerpt from Mesereau’s recross-examination: he got Star to admit that the reason that he didn’t mention the third alleged incident of abuse that he witnessed when he was interviewed by Katz is because he “forgot”! Mesereau immediately ended his recross-examination upon hearing this pathetic explanation!
Q. Now, you’ve indicated the first time youever discussed any alleged inappropriate touching byMichael Jackson was with Psychologist Stanley Katz,right?A. Yes.Q. And you have admitted that you gave StanleyKatz a different description than you’ve given inthis courtroom, right?A. Yes.Q. In fact, you never mentioned the third event 1476that you’ve described today to Stanley Katz?A. Because I might have forgot about it.MR. MESEREAU: No further questions.THE COURT: Mr. Sneddon?
Star isn’t the only person to forget about this “third” incident! In his opening statement, Sneddon only mentioned two incidents that Star allegedly witnessed, despite the fact that during his police interviews, Star mentioned three incidents! Here’s an excerpt from Sneddon’s opening statement:
10 Star Arvizo will describe to you what he saw11 one night. He was at the movie theater with other12 guests at the ranch, and his brother and the13 defendant were nowhere to be seen. And after the14 movie was over with, as was his custom, he went back15 to the main residence. And when he got to the16 residence, he walked down the hallway, he put in the17 code, he heard the “ding” go off of the little18 alarm. He walked back through the — towards the19 stairwell, pushed on the door, the door was closed.20 The door was locked. It was latched from the top.21 He pushed again. The latches gave way. He went22 into the little bathroom and turned to his left and23 headed up the stairway.24 Now, I described to you how those stairways25 work and I described to you how they open up to the26 right. And as he walked up those stairwells, when27 he got to the location where those banisters appear28 and the pedestals are located, and he turned to his 58 1 right, he was frozen. And he was frozen by what he2 saw. And this is what he saw:3 Lying on the bed directly in front of him4 was the defendant, Michael Jackson. The defendant5 was lying on his back. He had on a shirt,6 underwear, and socks. Lying next to Jackson was his7 brother Gavin dressed in underwear and a shirt.8 Gavin was curled up, and Star thought he was9 sleeping. He wasn’t moving. No motion.10 What he saw at that particular point in time11 also was, on the nightstand directly to the right of12 the bed, which he had seen on numerous other13 occasions, were empty glasses and bottles of wine14 and Skyy Vodka that the three of them had shared on15 many occasions and were there that night.16 Jackson on the left, Gavin on the right.17 What he saw was Jackson’s hand. He saw his left18 hand wrapped into the inside of Jackson’s private19 parts, into his underwear. And he saw Jackson’s20 left hand over the top of his brother and inside his21 brother’s pants. And what he saw was the motion of22 Jackson’s hand inside of his underpants rhythmically23 moving up and down and his body moving up and down24 while he masturbated with his hand under the25 underpants of the motionless Gavin Arvizo.26 He stared for about five or ten seconds and27 then he ran off, and he went back into the guest28 cottages, and he never stayed in those bedrooms 59 1 again.2 There was a second occasion where Star3 Arvizo encountered the same thing. It was about a4 couple of days later, to his recollection. Again,5 this time he thinks it was between 1 and 2 o’clock6 in the morning. And again, the defendant and Gavin7 were nowhere to be seen.8 Star headed back up to the bedroom. And9 again, going up the stairway, and again when he10 turned to his right, he saw the defendant. This11 time things were just a little bit different. Not a12 lot. This time the defendant was still on the left.13 Gavin was still on the right. This time they were14 both laying on their backs. They were dressed in15 exactly the same way, except this time Gavin had on16 shorts instead of the underpants. At this time the17 actions were exactly the same, except that this time18 the defendant had his hand up underneath the pants19 of Gavin, and Star saw him masturbating Gavin at the20 same time that he was masturbating himself. And21 again, he ran off.22 Star told no one of what he saw. He didn’t23 tell his mother. He didn’t tell his brother. And24 he didn’t tell his sister. He told no one. The25 first person that Star Arvizo told about what he saw26 was Dr. Stanley Katz, a psychologist, who an27 attorney had referred the child — the Arvizo28 children to see. 60
Sneddon briefly redirect-examines Star again, but only to differentiate between the “kitchen” table and the “dinner” table at Neverland, and this ends his testimony:
FURTHER REDIRECT EXAMINATIONBY MR. SNEDDON:Q. Star, with regard to the table that you’retalking about, was it the kitchen table?A. It was the dinner table.Q. And there’s — there’s a difference in thatparticular residence between the kitchen table andthe dinner table, correct?A. Yes.Q. And when you were asked this question, youwere asked this question at the grand jury, correct?A. Yes.Q. And you were asked by Mr. Zonen?A. Yes.Q. And he was asking you about Mr. Jacksonfiddling with your brother’s shirt?A. Yes.Q. Is that the only occasion that you saw himfiddling with his shirt?A. Yes.Q. And that was in response to Mr. Zonen’squestion?A. Yes. 1477MR. SNEDDON: Nothing further, Your Honor.MR. MESEREAU: Nothing further, Your Honor.THE COURT: All right. Thank you. You maystep down.Call your next witness.MR. SNEDDON: Gavin Arvizo, Your Honor.THE COURT: When you get to the witnessstand here, please remain standing.GAVIN ARVIZO: Yes, sir.THE COURT: Face the clerk here. Raise yourright hand.
Summary of Star Arvizo’s testimony:
1. Star began his testimony by describing his family’s background. There was a lot of physical and verbal abuse between both parents, and from the parents to the children. On the family’s first trip to Neverland in 2000, David Arvizo threw a can of club soda at Janet’s face, in front of the children, when they were in the guest house.
2. Star testified that Jackson gave him the security code to his bedroom, and a security guard gave him the codes to other rooms in the house after their trip from Miami in February 2003.
3. On their very first night at Neverland, according to Star, Jackson and Frank Cascio showed him and Gavin online pornography for around 15 minutes on a laptop computer that Jackson had given to Gavin as a gift. However, Gavin later testified that he couldn’t “remember” whether the computer they watch porn on was the one that Jackson had given him, or if it belonged to Frank!
4. According to Star, while the Arvizo family was in Miami with Jackson and his entourage, he and Gavin were taught how to use profanities by Jackson, who stopped this behavior once a Nanny Grace entered the room and interrupted him. However, this assertion was thoroughly refuted by Simone & Rijo Jackson, Prudence Brando, Julio Avila, Carol Lemere, and others, who all stated in interviews that Star and Gavin routinely cursed and used other vulgarities in their language. (Read this court document for more information.) There was another incident where he allegedly saw Gavin stumbling around the hotel room, holding a 7-Up can with wine inside of it, intoxicated. Gavin allegedly woke up with a hangover the next morning.
5. Star testified that on the flight back to Neverland from Miami, he was offered a Diet Coke can filled with wine by Jackson, but after taking a sip he refused to drink any more of it. He also claimed to have seen Jackson and Gavin drinking soda cans full of wine, to have seen Jackson lick the top of Gavin’s head, and to have seen Jackson make two sexually offensive prank calls to a woman. However, Star also testified that Jackson’s physician Dr. Farshshian sat across from Jackson the entire flight, thus contradicting his own lies.
6. Star testified that after he arrived at Neverland in February 2003, but before he left the ranch for the first time with Jesus Salas, he drank alcohol with Jackson “a lot of times”, with Star and Aldo Cascio present with him as well. They allegedly drank together in Jackson’s bedroom, office, and wine cellar. Star also testified that he had never been in the wine cellar without Jackson, and that Jackson told him and Gavin not to tell Davellin, because she might tell Janet (thus insinuating the media myth that Jackson felt girls were “tattletales”).
7. In addition to the prank calls that he witnessed on the plane, Star testified that he witnessed and participated in Jackson’s prank calls from his bedroom suite at Neverland. Phone numbers were picked at random, and if nobody answered, Jackson forced the young boys to drink wine.
8. Star testified that during their first “escape” from Neverland, Frank Cascio allegedly told him that “he has ways that my grandparents could disappear”. Jesus Salas, a ranch manager at Neverland, drove the Arvizo family to their grandparent’s house during their first “escape”.
9. When questioned about the rebuttal video and the DCFS interview, Star testified that he lied about the good things that he said about Jackson, and that he merely repeated what he was told to say by Dieter Weisner.
10. Star testified that upon returning to Neverland after his initial “escape”, he and Jackson watched a horror movie together, and Jackson kept saying “clitoris” whenever a female character was on-screen. Star claimed that he didn’t know what it meant at the time when Jackson said it in 2003, and during his testimony in 2005. His claim of being ignorant of the meaning of the term clitoris is contradicted by the interviews given by Neverland employees who caught him with pornographic magazines, and his claim of watching a horror movie with Jackson is just a ripoff of the 1993 case where Jackson and Jordan watched “The Exorcist” together. Star wanted it to seem as if Jackson’s M.O. was to watch horror movies with his “victims”.
11. When asked by Sneddon if there were any other “unusual” events with Jackson, Star initially could not remember any, so Sneddon had to “remind” Star about an incident that he described to police investigators and the Grand Jury; the incident occurred when Jackson allegedly ran upstairs into his bedroom completely nude, with an erect penis, sat on the bed with him and Gavin and said “it’s natural”, before leaving the room. Star said that Jackson ran back downstairs after the incident, but during his opening statement Sneddon said that Star and Gavin ran downstairs and pretended to have to use the bathroom!
12. Sneddon displayed a group of adult magazines that Star claimed to have been shown by Jackson, and Star identified a particular issue of “Barely Legal” (and not the “Barely Legal” franchise in general, but a specific issue), which was introduced into evidence as “People’s 86”. But under cross examination, Mesereau alerted Star to the fact that the particular issue that he claimed Jackson showed him in March 2003 was published in August 2003!
13. Star testified that he and Gavin were in Jackson’s bedroom, and Jackson entered the room and simulated having sexual intercourse on a female mannequin, and in another encounter, Jackson asked him if he ever masturbated, and Star relied “No”, and Jackson replied “Everyone does it. You should try it. It’s okay”. Sneddon stated that Jackson was trying to “teach” the boys how to masturbate, but Michael Jackson’s younger cousin Rijo stated that he caught Star and Gavin masturbating in the guest house, and was invited to do it with them, but refused.
14. Star testified to additional episodes of drinking wine with Jackson after the Arvizo family returned to Neverland after the Calabasas trip. He also testified about an incident where he and Gavin were sleeping in Jackson’s bed, under the covers in their pajamas, and Jackson allegedly climbed into bed with them under the covers, but once Jackson realized that Star was awake he jumped out of the bed.
15. Star testified that on two different occasions, he walked upstairs into the second floor of Jackson’s bedroom suite, and as he stood on the stairs, he saw Jackson masturbating his brother Gavin as he lay asleep, intoxicated from drinking alcohol. Star observed this alleged act of abuse for only a few seconds, and then left to go sleep in the guest unit, and didn’t disclose this to anyone until he met with Dr. Stan Katz in May 2003. Star testified that he stood about “six steps” away from the top of the stairwell and noticed the abuse, but as the video in bullet point #17 shows, there was a row of speakers lining the top of the stairwell that would have blocked anyone’s view of Jackson’s room until they were at the very top of the stairwell!
16. Star testified that he was told by his sister Davellin that their grandfather was seriously ill, and that the family would have to leave Neverland to visit him, but they were subsequently told by Davellin that it was a lie, and the story was just an excuse for them to be brought home from Neverland for the last time.
17. Under cross examination by Thomas Mesereau, Star admitted that he gave police different descriptions of Jackson’s bedroom alarm system, which he testified that he heard during each time that he witnessed Jackson allegedly masturbating Gavin in the second floor of his bedroom suite. Star claimed that the alarm could only be heard in the upstairs suite when the doors were open, but not when they were closed. However, this theory was totally disproven later on in the trial by Larry Nimmer, who filmed a test that confirmed that the alarm was indeed very audible from Jackson’s second floor. Here is that video:
18. When asked about whether or not he had discussed the case with attorney Larry Feldman, Star couldn’t even remember Feldman’s identity or his occupation!
19. Mesereau challenged Star about the material discrepancies in his testimony to psychologist Stanley Katz, the grand jury, the sheriff’s investigators, and his direct testimony regarding the abuse he claimed to witness in Jackson’s bedroom. For example, he gave different descriptions of the clothes that Gavin and Jackson were wearing, he initially said that he saw Jackson’s hand on top of Gavin’s underwear, but then he said that he saw Jackson’s hand inside of Gavin’s underwear, and he initially said that Jackson touched Gavin’s butt, but then said Jackson touched Gavin’s crotch.
20. Star testified that he had never discussed the JC Penney case with anyone in his family, but that assertion is contradicted by his father David Arvizo’s interview with Scott Ross, Mesereau’s private investigator (which can be read here.) He also testified that he had never taken any acting classes, but that is also refuted by what paralegal Mary Holzer stated to Scott Ross; she stated that Janet told her that she enrolled her children in comedy classes so that they could be believable. Star admitted that he really did use profanity prior to meeting Jackson, which contradicted the story he told to Sneddon under direct examination that it was Jackson who taught him how to curse for the first time. There were other lies that Star told in his JC Penney deposition, but the list is too voluminous to compile here.
21. Mesereau questioned Star about statements he made during his direct examination about how allegedly saw Jackson on the trip back to Neverland from Miami with a soda can that had a red ring around it, and it was filled with white wine. Star claimed he couldn’t remember saying it, so Mesereau offered to show him a transcript of his police interview (where he originally said it), and Star said that the court reporter (whose job it is to transcribe everyone’s testimony) misheard him! Yeah, whatever.
22. When questioned by Mesereau about statements that he gave to the police regarding the pornographic websites that Jackson and Frank Cascio allegedly showed him and Gavin during their first trip to Neverland in 2000, Star testified that he didn’t make those statements, but when Mesereau presented him with a copy of the interview transcript, he still denied making the statements, and said that “it’s just a paragraph that somebody wrote”. Star also testified that there were no computers at Neverland, but that is contradicted by the FBI files that were released in December 2009, in which they stated that they searched 18 computers at Neverland for child pornography, but determined that there wasn’t any on Jackson’s computers. Read pages 9 through 23 of these FBI files for more information.
23. Star told police that Jackson didn’t allow his family to know what time it was at Neverland, but admitted under cross-examination that he saw multiple clocks at Neverland.
24. Mesereau questioned Star about the cards that he and his family sent to Jackson during 2000-2002, which included phrases like “I love you, I love you”, “My super, super, best, best friend”, and “Thank you Michael for being our family”. Mesereau was trying to show the jury that the Arvizo family had become emotionally attached to Jackson and viewed him as their meal ticket. Star admitted that his mother Janet referred to Jackson as being a part of their family, and being a “father figure” to her kids. Star claimed many of the overly effusive praises that he wrote about Jackson were merely “plugged in”, and not from the heart. He also claimed that none of his family was involved with those cards, but when questioned why their names appeared on them, he said that they must have signed the cards after he was finished writing them! This was a deliberate technique by Mesereau to convey to the jury that the Arvizos referred to Jackson as “daddy” and “father” on their own volition, and not because they were forced to do so in the rebuttal video.
25. Mesereau challenged Star about conflicting statements that he gave to Dr. Katz, police investigators, the grand jury, and the trial jury regarding the abuse he claimed to have witnessed by Jackson against Gavin. For example, For example, he initially said that he witnessed Jacksons’ pants outside of Gavin’s pants in order to feel him, but later said it was inside Gavin’s pants in order to masturbate him, and that Jackson was rubbing his penis against Gavin’s buttocks! He also claimed that he “forgot” to mention during his direct testimony that Jackson allegedly served him Vodka, in addition to red and white wine. He also told Katz that he smelled marijuana when he entered Jackson’s room during those occasions when he allegedly witnessed Jackson abusing Gavin. Star denied it, and insinuated that Katz is a liar.
26. Mesereau asked Star about the alleged threats that Frank Cascio made to him and his family to get them to film the rebuttal video, and Star answered that he told sheriffs that Frank made those threats to him because Frank knew that Jackson had abused Gavin and wanted to protect Jackson. He also claimed that the reason why he has forgotten so much information is because he had to study for his school work, and that caused him to forget many of the details of the case, but only during his cross-examination!
27. Mesereau caught Star in yet another material inconsistency when Star claimed that his mother never left her guest unit, but he later admitted that his mother watched a movie with Jackson and his siblings in the movie theater. Star’s excuse for this discrepancy is that he was “thinking of something else” when he answered Mesereau’s original question about his mother never leaving the guest unit, and that Mesereau was “mixing up his memories”.
28. Star testified to the grand jury that he saw a bottle of Vodka in Jackson’s bedroom, and that Gavin was looking outwards towards the far wall as Jackson abused him. However, under cross examination Star admitted that the lights were out in Jackson’s bedroom, but he was able to clearly see everything from the light in the stairwell.
29. Star testified that he saw Jackson licking Gavin’s head on the flight back to Neverland from Miami, but when asked by Mesereau where Dr. Farshshian was sitting on the flight, Star confirmed that he had told the Grand Jury that Dr. Farshshian was sitting directly across from Jackson and Gavin. Star tried to change the subject and describe where his mother was sitting, but Mesereau forced him to answer the question, and Star once again confirmed that Dr. Farshshian sat across from Jackson and Gavin, thus making it impossible for Jackson to lick Gavin’s head undetected.
30. Star claimed that during his family’s first visit to Neverland in 2000, there was no discussion between Gavin and his parents at the dinner table about sleeping in Jackson’s room, which is in complete contradiction to Sneddon’s opening statement, and the testimony of Gavin and Davellin.
31. As Mesereau played the rebuttal tape and asked Star to comment on the statements that he made in the tape, Star testified that he was referring to his stepfather Jay Jackson when he was talking about Jackson as being his “father figure”, and that everything else was a lie that he was forced by Dieter Wiesner to tell.
32. When he was presented with the cards that he and his family sent to comedian Louise Palanker, where they described her as “mommy”, Star testified that he didn’t write those cards himself, but he only signed them, and that someone else could have written those platitudes to Palanker. Mesereau tried to show the jury that the Arvizo children had a habit of calling the people that they attached themselves to “Mommy” and “Daddy”, and by doing this he was able to prove to the jury that the Arvizos were lying when they said they were forced to call Jackson “daddy” in the rebuttal video.
33. During his grand jury testimony, Star testified that denied that he had ever seen Jackson touch Gavin’s penis or genital area, but when he was questioned about these statements under cross examination, Star answered that he meant to say that he didn’t see Jackson touching Gavin’s penis as they sat at the dinner table. Mesereau pointed out that this was the only time that Star had qualified his statement by saying that he was referring to their time at the dinner table.
34. Star testified to the Grand Jury that there were “approximately” 17 stairs leading from the first to the second floor of Jackson’s bedroom, but when questioned by Mesereau under cross examination as to how he came up with that exact number, Star testified that he just decided to count them, but he only counts straight stairs, and not curvy ones. He did not mention walking up “17 stairs” in any of his police interviews.
35. Star denied pulling a knife on Neverland cook Kiki Fournier, but during her testimony she confirmed that this incident indeed happened.
36. Star’s recross-examination concluded when he was asked by Mesereau why he never told Dr. Katz about the third alleged incident of Jackson abusing Gavin (which he mentioned to police in subsequent interviews), and he claimed that he “might have forgot” about it, and so Mesereau immediately ended his testimony on that note.
37. On a final note, it seems that Star’s inability to understand everything that Dieter Weisner (a native of Germany) told him to say during the filming of the rebuttal video may have inspired him to use Rosetta Stone in order to learn to speak German, because, according to his Facebook profile, he can now speak German in addition to English and Spanish! And notice how he listed a high school from South Dakota as one of his schools! That is probably where he and Gavin were temporarily relocated to in the years after the trial.
Gavin Arvizo’s direct examination begins in the next post!