SANTA MARIA, Calif. – The boy who is accusing Michael Jackson (search) of child molestation took the stand Wednesday at the pop star's trial.
The now 15-year-old accuser faced Jackson for the first time since departing the singer's Neverland ranch in March 2003 and alleging he was molested.
The boy, looking trim in a blue shirt, was called to the stand by District Attorney Tom Sneddon (search) and asked if he recognized the defendant.
The boy said yes, with an expression that appeared to be verging on a sneer.
The teen accuser, who was a 13-year-old cancer patient when he met Jackson, testified about his father hitting him, his sister and mother.
He also talked about attending a Los Angeles comedy camp hosted by Jamie Masada, the comedy club owner who would eventually bring him and Jackson together.
The boy said his favorite comedian was "Tonight Show" host Jay Leno (search) and that he often asked Masada if Leno would attend the camp, but Leno never did.
The defense contends Leno is one of several comedians the boy's family tried to bilk out of money.
The boy said his coach at the comedy camp was comic actor George Lopez (search) and that he began attending the camp after his mother found a flyer advertising it.
"She always thought I was kind of funny," he said.
He also talked about what it was like to have cancer.
"I felt like there was a knife in my stomach," he said, adding that he would hold a pillow to his stomach as he slept to quell the pain.
The much-awaited testimony from Jackson's accuser began about 4:30 p.m. EST (1:30 p.m. PST) after cross-examination finished for his younger brother, who was on the stand since Monday.
The brother was confronted by the singer's attorney Wednesday with a statement he made to sheriff's investigators showing he gave a different account of the alleged molestation than the one he told to jurors.
The 14-year-old boy testified this week that he twice saw his sleeping brother being molested by Jackson, both times by walking up stairs into Jackson's bedroom in the master bedroom suite at the singer's Neverland ranch.
Defense attorney Thomas Mesereau Jr. (search) produced an interview the boy gave to sheriff's deputies in which he said he was lying on a couch pretending to be asleep when he witnessed the second molestation.
"I was pretending like I was sleeping. I was in his couch, the little couch," Mesereau quoted from a transcript.
Mesereau asked the boy questions about whether his account of the second molestation had changed.
"It was actually three times," the boy said.
Mesereau also asked him about what exactly Jackson was doing to his brother in the second incident and how he was touching him.
"I was nervous when I did the interview," the boy.
"So because you were nervous you didn't get the facts right," the attorney asked.
"Yes," the boy said.
On Tuesday, Mesereau produced a transcript of grand jury testimony by a psychologist who interviewed the 14-year-old boy and reported yet another description of the second molestation with fundamentally different physical details.
Mesereau on Wednesday also challenged prosecutors' claims that the boys' family was held against their will at Neverland for nearly a month, getting the boy to acknowledge that the family left three times.
"How many times do you think your family escaped from Neverland and then went back so they could escape again?" Mesereau asked.
"I don't get the question," the boy said.
The boy later said he only considered the third departure from Neverland to be an escape.
The witness also gave an account of how his sister received alcohol from Jackson that differed from the version the sister gave in her own testimony.
The sister testified earlier she drank wine with Jackson and her brothers in a wine cellar. But the boy told Mesereau his sister received alcohol from Jackson in his kitchen and it was vodka.
"It wasn't in the wine cellar?" Mesereau asked.
The boy said no.
The cross-examination of the accuser's brother began on Tuesday, when Mesereau got the boy to acknowledge that Jackson had not really shown him or his brother a particular sex magazine.
The boy appeared caught by surprise when Mesereau confronted him with his testimony from Monday that Jackson showed him and his brother a magazine called Barely Legal, which was displayed by District Attorney Tom Sneddon (search) as a significant piece of evidence seized from Jackson's home.
The boy reiterated he was sure it was the exact magazine Jackson showed them in a suitcase full of magazines.
"Michael Jackson never showed you that magazine, Barely Legal, did he?" Mesereau said in an accusatory tone.
"Yes," said the boy.
"But when you look at the date it was August 2003," Mesereau said, pointing out that the family left Jackson's Neverland ranch for the last time in March 2003.
"I didn't say it was exactly the one he showed us," the boy said defensively, adding later, "I said he showed us those type of magazines."
Jackson, 46, is accused of molesting the cancer survivor at Neverland in 2003 when the accuser was 13, giving him alcohol and conspiring to hold the boy's family captive to get them to rebut a damaging TV documentary in which Jackson said he allowed children to sleep in his bedroom.