LOS ANGELES - The powerful sedative Diprivan was found in Michael Jackson's home, a law enforcement official said yesterday as the city planned for a massive crowd at the singer's memorial service.
Diprivan is an anesthetic widely used in operating rooms to induce unconsciousness. Also known as Propofol, it's given intravenously and is very unusual to have in a private home.
The law enforcement official spoke on condition of anonymity.
A Los Angeles Police spokesman, Lt. John Romero, declined to discuss the case.
The cause of Jackson's death has not been determined. Autopsy results are not expected for several weeks.
At the Staples Center, where Jackson's memorial will be held Tuesday morning, Assistant Los Angeles Police Chief Earl Paysinger said anywhere from 250,000 to 700,000 people could try to reach the arena, even though only 17,500 tickets will be available.
City Councilman Jan Perry urged people to stay home and watch the memorial on TV.
There will not be a funeral procession through the city.
Tickets to Jackson's memorial service will be free. They can be obtained by registering at Staplescenter.com.
There will be 11,000 tickets for seats inside Staples Center and 6,500 for seats in the adjacent Nokia Theatre, where fans can watch a simulcast.
Tonight, 8,750 names will be randomly selected to receive two tickets each.
No details about the memorial service itself were released.
In the weeks before his death, Cherilyn Lee, a registered nurse who was working with the singer, said Jackson pleaded for Diprivan amid the stress of preparing for a series of comeback concerts.
Ms. Lee said she repeatedly rejected his demands because the drug was unsafe.
Told yesterday that Diprivan had been found at Jackson's house, she said, "I did everything I could to warn him against it."
Jackson had trouble sleeping as far back as 1989, said one of his former publicists, Rob Goldstone, who spent a month on the road with Jackson during the "Bad" tour.
Last fall, doctors from the Mayo Clinic warned at a conference that in rare cases, Diprivan can trigger an irreversible chain of events leading to heart dysfunction and death. They said three patients receiving Diprivan to treat severe seizures had suffered cardiac arrest, and two died. The doctors said the clinic stopped using Diprivan to treat such patients because of the danger.
Authorities are investigating allegations that the 50-year-old Jackson had been consuming painkillers, sedatives, and antidepressants.
Edward Chernoff, an attorney for Jackson's physician, Dr. Conrad Murray, said yesterday that he had agreed with investigators not to comment until information is released through official channels.
Dr. Murray was in Jackson's rented mansion when the singer died June 25.