Sunday, July 5, 2009

Fans scramble for Jackson tickets

More than half a million Michael Jackson fans have already applied for 17,500 free tickets to the singer's public memorial service next week.

Jackson, who died last week aged 50, will be remembered at the Staples Center in Los Angeles on Tuesday.

Tickets will be chosen at random from names registered at

Police in Los Angeles expect as many as 700,000 people may try to reach the arena but it will be sealed off to those without tickets.

Jackson had been rehearsing for his London concerts at the Staples Center.

In a press conference, family representative Ken Sunshine said they wanted to accommodate as many fans as possible.

"It is all about the fans," he said.

Officials said that no funeral procession would take place and the memorial service would not be shown on big screens outside the venues. Free pool feeds will be made available to media organisations for broadcast, they said.

It is still not known what caused Jackson's death last week at the age of 50.

He collapsed at his home and was pronounced dead two hours later at the UCLA medical centre.

An autopsy was conducted but results are not expected for several weeks. The Jackson family had a second autopsy performed and those results are also pending.

The Los Angeles County Coroner's office has said there is no evidence of foul play.

It added that the results of toxicology tests could take weeks to come back.

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