Michael Jackson autopsy picture leaked?

It’s the celebrity death that just won’t die.

Michael Jackson has been dead since the end of June, and four months later, it’s still a gigantic source of interest and focus in celebrity news. The latest drama in the saga is a rumor that Michael Jackson’s autopsy pictures have leaked. As the picture is not widely available yet through the usual channels and this sounds not unlike the initial reports of the condition of Jackson’s body, it sounds like merely a rumor at this point.

The Daily Beast traced the rumors back to a restaurateur in LA , quoting individuals who’d allegedly seen the alleged autopsy picture (allegedly) and described the “shocking” scene thusly:

It features only Jackson’s head and shows his shaved skull and wide open eyes. His eyebrows are tattooed and skin is ashen in color. His lips are flat, wide and without lipstick. A scar on his left cheek is visible because concealing makeup had been cleaned from his face. Jackson is lying on his back on a metal autopsy table.

Back on June 28th, we (and everyone else) posted a similar report about the condition of Jackson’s body, albeit with less focus on the singer’s face:

According to the leaked document Michael was literally skin and bones having barely eaten and the contents of his stomach showing only pills, although they don’t say what kind. His hips, shoulders and thighs supposedly were riddled with needle wounds which is believed to be a result of daily injections of narcotic painkillers.

Further details in the report supposedly point to a wig wearing anorexic body weighing about 112 pound. Additionally the body had several broken ribs from the rescuers attempts to resuscitate him. There is also suggestions that four injection sites were found above or near to his heart.

This round of rumors comes from Gerald Posner at the Daily Beast, who claims that Jackson’s autopsy pics are being flashed around LA. Posner goes through an exhaustive trail of sources to find the elusive photo, which is said to be worth at least $1m, but despite several sources claiming to have seen it, no one can provide a picture of the Michael Jackson on the autopsy table. And one source, chief LA coroner Ed Winter, is skeptical, even calling bollocks on major news sources:

The Associated Press claimed to have obtained access to a copy of Jackson’s autopsy last week. “When I asked them if I could see what they had,” Winter told me, “they couldn’t produce anything.”

While the existence of the photos seems at least questionable at this point, it’s also likely that if there are pictures of Michael Jackson’s autopsy, the longer they circulate, the higher the risk goes that someone will post them on the internet and dilute the value. Posner recalls a similar press frenzy around the death of Princess Diana and how outlets had declined to run graphic pictures of the dying woman. It was a different internet in 1997 and if the rumors that someone is hoping to cash in on a picture rumored to be widely circulating are true, it’s unlikely it will stay under wraps for that long. (CBS was the first, seven years after Diana’s death.)