Macaulay Culkin and Wade Robson lied to protect Michael Jackson, juror from 2005 trial believes
93-year-old Eleanor Cook said she was one of the two jurors who believed that Jackson was guilty, but eventually went with the "not guilty" verdict
Juror number five from the highly publicized 2005 Michael Jackson child molestation trial has spoken out after shocking allegations resurfaced on HBO's explosive new documentary, 'Leaving Neverland'.
Ninety-three-year-old Eleanor Cook was in the courtroom that day 15 years ago and recalled hearing several testimonies from boys who had been close to the late pop star.
Among the boys who defended the King of Pop were child actor Macaulay Culkin and a young dancer called Wade Robson.
Robson along with James Safechuck have alleged that Jackson sexually assaulted them over years when they were children in the new documentary.
Cook recalls that both of the boys insisted that Jackson never sexually abused them, Radar Online reported. In the new documentary by HBO, however, Robson has changed his story completely and has claimed that Jackson actually abused him for many years.
Culkin, however, still insists that Jackson never touched him during their long friendship.
Cook also told Radar that she never once believed the testimonies by the children. Speaking of Robson and Culkin, Cook said: "I didn’t believe them." She added that she thought the boys made up the story to protect Jackson. She said: "They were kids who grew up with Michael."
The woman also confessed that she was only one of two jurors who found Jackson guilty of intoxicating and molesting Gavin Arvizo.
She said firmly: "I definitely thought he was guilty with all my heart and soul. I have always thought that. I have prayed about it."
Cook said that even though she believed strongly that Jackson was guilty, she "felt sorry for him."
"His father mistreated him. Yes, he was guilty, and he did a lot of that stuff. But he had a hard life, and his mother was the only one that was there every day. She was a very sweet woman," she added.
Jackson's father, Joe Jackson, died in 2018 and his 88-year-old mother Katherine is currently in failing health. Cook claimed that Jackson "should have been sent to jail" and "punished" but then she eventually decided on "not guilty" with the rest of the jurors because she knew that she and the other like-minded juror "knew we weren’t going to change anyone’s mind".
"We gave in," she concluded.
Jackson was subsequently acquited of all the charges in the 2005 case, and his family has maintained that he is innocent that he is innocent till date, almost 10 years after the King of Pop died of an overdose at the age of 50.