Hoaxes & Rumors

Michael Jackson Death Photo Debunked

Michael Jackson Death Photo Debunked

After the Michael Jackson gurney picture was displayed at the Conrad Murray trial, I was reminded of the Michael Jackson death photo that surfaced a couple years ago. Actually it didn’t remind me of it – which is the point of this article. There is no doubt that the gurney photo is of Michael Jackson on his deathbed. The earlier “death photo” was released by an Austrian publication and was created with “experts” who supposedly used autopsy reports to create this image.

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So it’s definitely not real, but it is accurate? A cursory look at the photo does somewhat resemble a deceased Michael Jackson. It’s certainly eerie looking. Further examination leads one to conclude that there are significant flaws with the photo, not only in the facial construction, but also in its reconciliation with autopsy information. The construction of the face itself is simply inaccurate.

I put their photo side by side with a photo of a similar angle of Michael Jackson in order to compare the features. I used the top of the eyebrows and the bottom of the chin as my reference range. I sized up each image and drew lines across to match up placement of features in each picture, as you can see in the image here. The problem is that if the eyebrows are aligned, the mouths aren’t in the right place. If  the mouths are aligned, the eyes don’t match. Neither enlarging nor shrinking of the images can reconcile the differences with distances and sizes of facial features. Further, their death photo shows a much narrower jaw than Michael Jackson had. It’s a rather inaccurate depiction of his facial features.

How accurate were they in terms of matching autopsy information?

In the depiction, we see a completely bald head, and indeed there have been numerous reports that Jackson was bald upon his death… but not that bald! The autopsy report stated that he was bald in the front and the rest of his hair was short with tight curls, which is not depicted at all here.

The autopsy also reported scars next to each nostril, which is hard to tell if that’s represented in the depiction. The nose itself seems to be exaggerated, as if it has collapsed – which was not reported as part of the autopsy. In fact, the prosthetic nose he wore was apparently missing completely, with no bridge at all.

The autopsy reported a tattoo stretching across his head, which is not depicted either.

The depiction shows rather dark skin compared to what we’ve seen from Michael Jackson over the past 20+ years. In fact, his gurney photo is consistent with the lighter skin we’ve seen over the years. The autopsy confirmed depigmentation of the skin around much of his upper body.

It’s obvious that the “death photo” created as a representation of Michael Jackson post-mortem is inaccurate. It doesn’t accurately represent the proportions of his face, nor does it represent the characteristics described in the autopsy report.

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