Michael Jackson voluntarily gave a DNA sample to authorities on Saturday following their search of his Neverland ranch the day before. The pop star had been advised by his lawyer to leave his home with his children while the investigation was taking place, but he returned to cooperate. Investigators also spent Saturday measuring the mansion’s rooms and establishing what was visible from one room to the next.
On Friday at 9 a.m., more than sixty investigators from the police department and district attorney’s office raided Jackson’s home. The mansion and surrounding property — which includes a zoo and amusement park, where the singer has hosted a number of children’s parties — were searched in order to gather evidence for Jackson’s upcoming trial for alleged child molestation.
The pop star’s estate has been raided before, on November 18, 2003 — the same day on which Jackson’s Number Ones greatest hits album was released. At the time, the singer issued a statement, saying in part, “These characters always seem to surface with dreadful allegations just as another project, an album, a video is being released.”
A month later, Jackson was charged with child molestation, conspiracy and administering an intoxicating agent (alcohol) to an alleged twelve-year-old victim. Last April, the singer was indicted, and his case will go to trial on January 31st. He faces up to eight years in prison if convicted. Today was the deadline for discovery of new evidence in the case.