As her client left jail under cover of darkness early Monday, the attorney for Conrad Murray -- the doctor convicted in the death of Michael Jackson -- said he did not receive special treatment.
Murray served roughly two years of the maximum four-year sentence he received for his involuntary-manslaughter conviction in 2011 for his role in Jackson's death, which was caused by an overdose of the anesthetic propofol that the doctor had administered.
Murray was able to evade reporters and Michael Jackson fans who were staked outside the jail by leaving through a nonpublic route that authorities declined to elaborate on.
Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department spokesman Steve Whitmore, who briefly addressed reporters, would only say that Murray was released to "representatives," and that such measures are allowed on a "case-by-case" basis to ensure certain inmates' safety and security.
The covert release riled Jackson supporters, who said Murray received undue "special treatment." Many had arrived early for a chance to heckle Murray as he left the jail.
Julia Thomas said she wanted to tell Murray that "he's going to be taunted as long as he walks this Earth."
But his attorney, Valerie Wass, noted that under state sentencing rules, Murray was eligible for parole well in advance of the end of his sentences. Even so, he has endured a long ordeal since Jackson’s death, she added.
Speaking to reporters outside the Los Angeles County jail, Wass said she was "just happy he's finally out."
"They didn't release him one minute early," she said.
Murray was released at 12:01 a.m. Monday, authorities confirmed.
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