Comedian Louise Palanker gave her testimony at the Michael Jackson trial yesterday.
She is reported to have given $20K to the Arvizo family, to aid the treatment of Gavin who was suffering at the time from cancer.
Palanker said that she tried to contact Janet Jackson (nee Arvizo) after seeing the TV documentary "Living With Michael Jackson", in which Jackson and Gavin held hands and Jackson acknowledged letting children sleep in his bed.
Palanker said that soon after she left a message with Gavin's grandparents, Janet called her and sounded frightened.
"She was extremely agitated and she was almost whispering...This was fear-based agitation,".
Janet allegedly told her not to call her back at the same number. Palanker quoted Janet as saying:
"Don't call me back here. They're listening to everything I say. These people are evil."
Palanker then said:
"I asked her 'Are the children in school?' She said, 'No.' That's when she started crying,".
Palanker then called her attorney afterward because "I felt that they were being held against their will." She did not call police.
She also testified that she once told investigators Janet had "hostage syndrome," and that she believed that Janet had felt like a hostage since her marriage at age 16 to an allegedly abusive man.
The defence are arguing that Gavin's mother (Janet) exploited relationships with Palanker, and other celebrities, to get money.
Palanker stated that the Arvizo family had a tendency to call celebrities including Jay Leno, who contacted Palanker. "He told me they had left three messages on his voice mail," she said.
Palanker said that she met the Arvizo family at a comedy camp for underprivileged youth, run by the Laugh Factory club, and began helping them financially after the boy was diagnosed with cancer.
Palanker said she gave the family $10K for expenses. She then gave a second gift of $10K when the father asked for more money. Palanker said the father told her the family could not afford rent because his wife had spent their money on such things as prayer and "a lot of statues and votive candles."
Palanker said that she later learned that the family had fixed up a clean room for Gavin, so that he could recover from chemotherapy at his grandparents' house. The Arvizo's also bought Gavin a big screen TV and DVD player that they all used.
Palanker said she and the owner of the Laugh Factory organized two benefits for the family at the father's urging. However, by the time of the second benefit, comedian George Lopez refused to perform because the father and Gavin had accused Lopez and his wife of stealing $300 from Gavin's wallet.
Palanker said that the Lopezes said they had been falsely accused and "were irate,".
What a mess!