Attorneys worry about a "CSI effect" in Conrad Murray's trial - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Attorneys worry about a "CSI effect" in Conrad Murray's trial

(CNN) - Dr. Conrad Murray will be facing the jury in the death of Michael Jackson this week, but many attorneys are concerned that popular TV crime shows could have an impact on the outcome.

"Our show has impacted the culture, I guess you'd say to the point where people expect CSI type of evidence," Robert David Hall, who plays the coroner on CSI: Crime Scene Investigation, said.

Many attorneys and real-life crime scene investigators agree with Hall.

"It is really frustration because it is unrealistic," Mary Hong, a senior forensic scientist in Orange County, CA, said.

While jurors are familiar with Hong's job description since shows like CSI became popular and even though they are usually riveted to her testimony, Hong says the shows has caused people to expect too much.

"I think they do understand that we do not have fancy cars to go out on the crime scene and we can't solve a case within hours," Hong said. "But, I think a lot of people feel what they see on TV is realistic."

The effect usually works to a defendant's advantage because jurors are reluctant to convict without clear scientific evidence. The effect can be seen as recently as the Casey Anthony trial, where juror Jennifer Ford said there wasn't enough physical evidence that a crime was committed.

The prosecution case against Murray will include crime scene evidence taken from Michael Jackson's bedroom and testimony from the coroner, but jurors are probably not going to see any evidence that clearly establishes what caused Jackson's death.

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