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Casey Anthony Wiki

Caylee Anthony homicide

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Caylee Anthony
Born August 9, 2005
Orlando, Florida, United States
Died June 16, 2008 (aged 2)
Orlando, Florida, United States
Caylee Marie Anthony[1] (August 9, 2005 - June 16, 2008) was an American toddler who disappeared in June 2008 and was subsequently discovered dead, attracting national attention. Her mother, Casey Anthony (born March 19, 1986), was indicted on October 14, 2008, for first-degree murder. Police found Anthony's account of Caylee's disappearance suspicious after learning that Casey had not reported her daughter missing for more than a month; the last time Casey Anthony claimed to have seen Caylee was on June 16, 2008, but the child's disappearance was not reported to police until July 15, 2008. On December 11, 2008, the skeletal remains of Caylee Anthony were found near the Anthony home by a meter reader, later confirmed on December 19, 2008 by the Orange County Medical Examiner to be those of the toddler.[2] The cause of the child's death is listed in the autopsy report as "homicide by undetermined means." Casey Anthony is currently in jail, arrested on first-degree murder charges with a trial start date for May 2011. Casey Anthony, her lawyers, and her family maintain that she did not harm her child and that she is innocent of all charges.



[edit] Disappearance

Caylee Anthony was first reported missing to authorities on July 15, 2008. Caylee's grandmother, Cindy Anthony, reportedly called 9-1-1 when her daughter Casey Anthony, Caylee's mother, would not tell her where Caylee had been. Cindy had not seen her granddaughter for weeks and became very alarmed when she admitted that she smelled the odor of a "dead body" in the trunk of Casey's car. Cindy later denied what she said and revised her account, stating that the smell was from old, stale pizza. Police later determined, through forensic testing, that there had indeed been the presence of a decomposing body in the trunk of that car.[3][4][5]

[edit] Investigation

When Detective Yuri Melich questioned Casey Anthony about the whereabouts of her daughter, she stated the child was with a babysitter. The purported babysitter, Zenaida "Zanny" Fernandez-Gonzalez, according to Casey, supposedly had been a caregiver for the child for over two years. When a local woman named Zenaida Gonzalez (not Fernandez-Gonzalez) was questioned by police on July 17, 2008, Gonzalez denied knowing either Casey or Caylee Anthony. When police asked the grandmother Cindy about the babysitter, Cindy said that she had no reason to doubt Casey's account of Fernandez-Gonzalez's caring for Caylee. However, in the nearly three years that Caylee was alive and living at Cindy Anthony's house, neither of Casey's parents nor any of her friends, boyfriends, family, or acquaintances had ever once met the purported babysitter.[6]

From the start of the investigation, Melich had trouble determining the majority of facts of the case. For instance, initially Caylee's grandparents, Cindy and George Anthony, told police that the last time they saw their granddaughter was on June 9, 2008 but authorities found a videotape, taken June 15, 2008, that shows Caylee reading a book. When the grandparents were questioned about the time discrepancy, Cindy Anthony said that she had been confused about the dates and recalled taking Caylee to see Caylee's great-grandfather on Father's Day, June 15, 2008. Cindy Anthony told police that her husband probably went along with the dates because he generally took his wife's word on details.

When Melich began to investigate Casey Anthony, he found discrepancies in what she had told law enforcement in her signed statement. The preponderance of the information Casey gave, starting with the babysitter account, appeared to be false. For example, Casey told police that she currently worked at Universal Studios; when police escorted her to the studio facility, she led them to an office but then admitted that she no longer worked there.[7] Casey also claimed she had been investigating Caylee's disappearance on her own which is why she did not contact police earlier. However, friends and family denied ever having been asked by Casey about Caylee's whereabouts. Numerous photos of Casey smiling and mugging for the camera while at bars and while attending parties in the weeks immediately after Caylee's disappearance were published by news media outlets. On the December 10, 2008 episode of Larry King Live, Cindy Anthony said she believed the photos in question were "staged" photos for which Casey was remunerated, apparently for the promotion of a nightclub.
Wikinews has related news: Body of small child found in Orlando, Florida
In July, KioMarie Cruz, Casey Anthony's childhood friend, told local police to investigate the wooded area near Hidden Oaks Elementary School. On August 11, 12, and 13 of 2008, tips were called in to police by a utility worker, subsequently identified as Orange County utility worker, Roy Kronk, but ignored by Richard Cain, a deputy sheriff of Orange County, Florida.[8][9] Caylee's remains were found in a bag, discovered by Kronk, near the same wooded area on Suburban Drive, less than a half-mile from the Anthony residence on Hopespring Drive.

[edit] Arrests and charges

Casey Anthony was arrested for the third time on September 15, 2008, on new charges of theft,[10] and was released shortly afterward.[11]

On October 14, 2008, Casey Anthony was indicted by a grand jury on charges of first-degree murder and was arrested for the fourth time.[12] She entered a plea of not-guilty to the charges that she killed Caylee.[11]

On October 21, 2008, the charges of child neglect were dropped against Casey. In a statement that morning, the State Attorney's Office explained: "The neglect charges were premised on the theory that her child, Caylee Marie, was still alive. As the investigation progressed and it became clear that the evidence proved that the child was deceased, the State sought an indictment on the legally appropriate charges."[13] On April 14, 2009, prosecutors announced that they plan to seek the death penalty in this case.[14] Casey Anthony and her family maintain that she is innocent of all charges.[15]

[edit] Discovery and confirmation of death

Part of the memorial for Caylee Anthony near where her body was found
On December 11, 2008, skeletal remains of what appeared to be a young child were found by a meter reader for a local utility, Roy Kronk. It was reported that the skull had duct tape wrapped around it. Documents released to the public on January 21, 2009 determined that the duct tape was over the mouth area of the child's skull and stuck to the hair on either side, and that the duct tape had a small heart shaped area of residue on its surface indicating a heart shaped sticker had at one time been stuck on the surface of the duct tape.[16] [17] On December 12, the remains were tentatively identified as Caylee based on strands of hair found with the remains as well as the age and measurements being a match for Caylee.[18] On December 15, WFTV reported that more bones were found in the wooded area near where the skull was discovered.[19]

On December 19, 2008, medical examiner Dr. "G" Jan Garavaglia confirmed that the remains found were those of Caylee Anthony, the death being ruled a homicide and that she had been killed by undetermined means. No details of the DNA identification testing were given, such as the number of loci (specific locations on a DNA sequence) that matched, or the sources used in the match.[8][20][21]

[edit] Publicity

The case attracted a large amount of mainstream media attention, and was regularly the main topic of many talk shows, including those hosted by Greta Van Susteren, Nancy Grace, Geraldo Rivera, and others. It has been featured on Fox's America's Most Wanted,[22] NBC's Dateline, and ABC's 20/20.

The mysterious and still unexplained death of Caylee has been distinguished by an unexplained lack of critical information from Casey Anthony, who was initially charged with child neglect and making false statements to investigators before later being charged with murder. However, while the Anthony grandparents repeatedly called upon the public to search for Caylee in places as far as Texas, Mexico, and Puerto Rico, they also insisted that Casey had been maintaining her silence in order to protect Caylee, and that searches for a dead body were inappropriate.[citation needed]

Casey Anthony's parents, Cindy and George, appeared on the Today show on October 22, 2008. They maintained their belief that Caylee was alive and would be found. Larry Garrison, president of SilverCreek Entertainment, was their spokesman until he resigned in November 2008, citing that he was leaving due to "the Anthony family's erratic behavior." [23]

More than 600 pages of evidence released by the Orange County Sheriff's Department, including hundreds of instant messages between Casey and then-boyfriend Tony Rusciano, have been the subject of increased scrutiny by the media for clues and possible motives in the homicide.[24]

George Anthony was reported missing on January 22, 2009, after he failed to show up for a meeting with his lawyer, Brad Conway. George was found in a Daytona Beach hotel the next day after sending messages to family members threatening suicide. He was taken to Halifax Hospital for psychiatric evaluation[25] and later released.

Commentators have expressed concern that Casey Anthony's right to a fair trial may be jeopardized by all of the pre-trial publicity.[26] Some cases have been successfully appealed based on prejudicial pre-trial publicity.[27] On May 4, 2009, Anthony's attorney Jose Baez filed for a change in venue to Miami-Dade County.[28]

An episode of the popular daytime talk show Dr. Phil covered the case, including the discovery of the body (which had not been confirmed as Caylee Anthony's at the time).

[edit] Evidence

On Friday, October 24, 2008, a forensic report from Oak Ridge National Laboratory in Tennessee confirmed results from a DNA test showing "evidence consistent with decomposition" based on five "key" compounds out of over 400 possible found in the trunk of Casey Anthony's car. DNA samples could not confirm whether the source was alive or dead. The only DNA testing by the FBI was limited to 752 base pairs out of 16,569 base pairs (less than 5% of the mitochondrial genome sequence). Whether or not the decomposition is human is still unknown but indicated as a possibility. The process has not been affirmed by a Daubert Test in the courts.[29]

Traces of chloroform were also found in Casey Anthony's car trunk and evidence was found that someone had searched the Internet on her computer for the use of the chemical and how to make it. No dates of the search were given and they did not establish if the searches were done by Casey.[30] On November 26, 2008, officials released 700 pages of documents related to the Anthony investigation, which included evidence of Google searches of the terms "neck breaking," "how to make chloroform," and "death" on Casey Anthony's home computer. No dates were given as to when the searches were done or by whom.[31]

On February 18, 2009, documents released by the State Attorney's Office in Florida indicated that the same type of laundry bag, duct tape, and plastic bags discovered at the crime scene were found in the house where Casey and Caylee resided. Heart-shaped stickers were also recovered by investigators. A heart-shaped sticker was found on the duct tape that covered the mouth area of Caylee's skull. The documents also indicate that Cindy Anthony stated to them that a Winnie the Pooh blanket was missing from Caylee's bed. This type of blanket was found at the crime scene. An entry from Casey Anthony's diary was also released.[32]

The entry is dated "June 21," and reads:
I have no regrets, just a bit worried. I just want for everything to work out okay. I completely trust my own judgment & know that I made the right decision. I just hope that the end justifies the means. I just want to know what the future will hold for me. I guess I will soon see -- This is the happiest that I have been in a very long time. I hope that my happiness will continue to grow -- I've made new friends that I really like. I've surrounded myself with good people -- I am finally happy. Let's just hope that it doesn't change.[33]
A member of Casey Anthony's defense team, spokeswoman Marti MacKenzie, contends that this entry was written in 2003 prior to the time that Caylee was born. The defense contends that the opposite page has "'03" written in one of the corners as the date, and the handwriting on the two pages match. However, there was no authentication that this is a date, or when it was entered in the diary or by whom. The prosecution acknowledged that it did not know when the entry was made.[34]

Hundreds of pages of evidence were released to the public throughout the case under the Florida "Sunshine Law", and published on the websites of several Orlando, Florida, news stations.

FBI Laboratory documents from June 2009, released to the public in September 2009, stated that the fabric of the duct tape found on the remains and the duct tape found on a gas can at the Anthony family home were microscopically dissimilar in fiber composition and not consistent with originating from the same source.[35]

FBI forensics laboratory identified on September 30, 2009 that a stain in the shape of a young child in the fetal position was found in the trunk of Casey Anthony's car.[36]

FBI documents released to the public in October 2009 indicated that two sources of DNA had been discovered in swabbings taken from the duct tape which was found on Caylee's remains, neither of them Casey Anthony's. One set of DNA, found on the shiny side of the tape, was found to be that of one of the FBI laboratory personnel and unrelated to the case.[citation needed] The other was an incomplete segment of DNA found on the adhesive side of the tape which did not match the DNA of Casey Anthony, her parents, the FBI analyst, or that of Caylee.[37]

[edit] Civil case

Casey Anthony is being sued for defamation by Zenaida Gonzalez, a 38-year-old Kissimmee mother of six, for damages including punitive. Anthony told investigators that a baby sitter named Zenaida Fernandez-Gonzalez — also known as "Zanny" — abducted 2-year-old Caylee Marie in June. It was reported that Anthony would be exercising her rights under the Fifth Amendment in response to written questions in the civil case.[38] The civil trial is set for August 29, 2011.[39]

[edit] Attorneys depart

Andrea Lyon[40] has departed the defense team for Casey Anthony.[41] Todd Macaluso[42] left the case due to California stating that he cannot practice law in California due to charges he used his clients' money. Brad Conway, the attorney for Casey Anthony's parents, withdrew in mid-August 2010, citing allegations in a defense motion that he got "special treatment" in reviewing records. Conway denied the defense allegations, and stated that the allegations made him a witness in the case and forced him to withdraw.[43]

[edit] Casey Anthony

Casey Anthony

Anthony mugshot July 16, 2008
Born March 19, 1986 (1986-03-19) (age 24)
Warren, Ohio, U.S.
Charge(s) First degree murder, et al.
Status Incarcerated in Orange County Jail[44]
Parents George and Cindy Anthony
Children Caylee Anthony (2005-2008)
Casey Marie Anthony (born March 19, 1986), Caylee's mother, has been charged with the first degree murder of her daughter.

She was first arrested on July 16, 2008, for giving false statements, neglect of a child, and obstruction of a criminal investigation with a request that she be held on a no bond status until Caylee Anthony was located.

On August 21, 2008, Casey Anthony was released after one month of incarceration. She was released from the Orange County jail after her $500,200 bond was posted by California bail bondsman Tony Padilla.[45]

She was arrested again on August 29, 2008, on charges of forgery, fraudulent use of personal information, and petty theft for forging $700 worth of checks and using her friend's credit cards without permission.[46][47] Tony Padilla subsequently rescinded the $500,200 in bail due to a lack of cooperation from Casey Anthony.[48]

On September 5, 2008, Casey Anthony was released again on bail after being fitted with an electronic tracking device.[49] Her $500,000 bond was posted anonymously,[50] and it was later revealed that her parents, Cindy and George Anthony, signed a promissory note for the bond.[51]

On October 14, 2008, Casey Anthony was indicted by a grand jury on charges of first-degree murder and was arrested for the fourth time. She is currently in the Orange County Jail awaiting her expected May 16, 2011, trial date, jury selection will start on May 9, 2011, in an undisclosed location.[52] The Florida state attorney's office in April 2009 announced that it intended to seek the death penalty. If convicted and sentenced to death, she will join Tiffany Cole as the only two women on Florida's death row.

[edit] See also

[edit] References

  1. ^ "Caylee Marie Anthony Missing Toddler from Orlando Florida USA". Retrieved 2008-12-20.
  2. ^ "Remains identified as missing toddler Caylee Anthony". Orlando Sentinel. 2008-12-19.,0,423309.story.
  3. ^ "Missing tot's grandmother hates that clings to hope she's alive". MSNBC. 2008-09-02.
  4. ^ "The Caylee Anthony Case". Retrieved 2008-12-20.
  5. ^ McBride, Alan (2008-07-31). "Casey Anthony Party Photos Discovered". Florida News. Retrieved 2008-12-20.
  6. ^ "Caylee Marie Anthony Disappearance Timeline". Central Florida News 13. 2008-12-19. Archived from the original on 2008-08-22. Retrieved 2008-12-20.
  7. ^ "Caylee's mother Casey Anthony indicted on 1st-degree murder charge". LA Times. 2008-10-15.,1,6830980,full.story.
  8. ^ a b "Remains ID'd As Caylee; Meter Reader Comes Forward". Click Orlando. 2008-12-19. Retrieved 2008-12-20.
  9. ^ "State reverses itself, will seek death in Casey Anthony case -". CNN. 2009-04-14. Retrieved 2010-04-28.
  10. ^ "Casey Anthony Back in Jail: DCF Investigates Confrontation". My Fox Orlando. 2008-09-15. Retrieved 2008-09-15.
  11. ^ a b "TimelineDocuments and Photos related to the Casey Anthony Case". Fox News Orlando. 2008-12-23. Retrieved 2008-12-27.
  12. ^ "Casey Anthony indicted, arrested on murder charge". Florida Today. 2008-10-14. Retrieved 2008-12-19. [dead link]
  13. ^ "Child-neglect charge dropped against Casey Anthony". Orlando Sentinel. 2008-10-21.,0,4701569.story.
  14. ^ Edwards, Amy L.; Sarah Lundy (2009-04-13). "State to seek death penalty in Casey Anthony case". Orlando Sentinel.,0,1925641.story. Retrieved 2009-04-13.
  15. ^,,20260231,00.html Diary Written in 2003
  16. ^ "Documents: Heart Sticker On Tape Over Caylee's Mouth". WFTV. 2009-01-21. Retrieved 2009-01-21.
  17. ^ "Sheriff: Anthony home may be a crime scene". CNN. 2008-12-11. Retrieved 2008-12-20.
  18. ^ "Lawyer: Investigators think body is Caylee's". CNN. 2008-12-12. Retrieved 2008-12-20.
  19. ^ Canning, Andrea; Scott Michels (2008-12-15). "More Bones Found Near Caylee Anthony Home". ABC News. Retrieved 2008-12-19.
  20. ^ "Remains identified as Caylee". Caylee Anthony Search Blog. 2008-12-19. Retrieved 2008-12-20.
  21. ^ Pacheco, Walter; Sarah Lundy and Amy L. Edwards (2008-12-19). "Remains identified as missing toddler Caylee Anthony". Orlando Sentinel.,0,1859200.story. Retrieved 2008-12-19.
  22. ^ "Caylee Marie Anthony". America's Most Wanted. Retrieved 2008-09-05.
  23. ^ "Second Anthony spokesperson steps down". My Fox Orlando. 2008-12-14. Retrieved 2008-12-20.
  24. ^ Amy L. Edwards, Sarah Lundy and Walter Pacheco (2008-09-26). "Hundreds of legal documents in Casey Anthony case released". Orlando Sentinel.,0,5763958.story. Retrieved 2008-12-27.
  25. ^ LEE FERRAN (2009-01-23). "George Anthony Left 5-Page Suicide Note, Sent Suicidal Texts to Family: Anthony Taken Into Custody, Hospitalized for Evaluation". ABC News. Retrieved 2009-01-23.
  26. ^ "Can Casey Anthony Get a Fair Trial?"
  27. ^ See the ruling of the Supreme Court in Sheppard v. Maxwell
  28. ^ Edwards, Amy L.; Sarah Lundy (2009-05-05). "Casey Anthony's lawyer wants trial moved to Miami-Dade". The Miami Herald. Retrieved 2009-05-05. [dead link]
  29. ^ "Decomposition evidence in Casey Anthony's trunk, lab says". CNN. 2008-10-24. Retrieved 2008-12-20.
  30. ^ "Did Caylee's mom chloroform her? Evidence mounts". MSNBC. 2008-09-05. Retrieved 2008-12-20.
  31. ^ Wangrin, Mark (2008-11-26). "Web Searches Revealed in Missing Fla. Girl Case: 'Neck Breaking,' 'Household Weapons' Among Searches on Anthony Home Computer". Associated Press (ABC News). Retrieved 2008-12-19. [dead link]
  32. ^ "Nancy Grace". CNN. 2009-02-18. Retrieved 2009-02-22.
  33. ^ "Caylee files reveal details about duct tape, Pooh blanket, car trunk". 2009-02-18.
  34. ^ Steve Helling (2009-02-19). "Defense: Caylee's Mother's Diary Was Written in 2003". People.,,20260231,00.html. Retrieved 2009-03-26.
  35. ^ FBI (2009-09-30). "Scan of various FBI emails". Retrieved 2009-12-20.
  36. ^ "FBI: Bloody Silhouette of Child Found in Casey Anthony's Car". 2009-09-30.,2933,557480,00.html. Retrieved 2009-10-20. [dead link]
  37. ^
  38. ^,0,7488580.story
  39. ^ "Casey Anthony update 14 June 2010".
  40. ^ "Andrea Lyon motion to withdraw".
  41. ^ "Andrea “cryin” Lyon, leaves the notorious Casey d-team".
  42. ^ Motion to Withdraw Filed by Todd Macaluso, Esq.
  43. ^ "Lawyer for Caylee Anthony's Grandparents Quits".
  44. ^ Current Inmate Database
  45. ^ "A Casey Anthony Released From Jail". Central Florida News 13. 2008-08-22. Retrieved 2008-08-30. [dead link]
  46. ^ "Group Decides To Stay, Continue Search For Caylee Anthony". WFTV 9. 2008-08-30. Retrieved 2008-08-30.
  47. ^ "Missing girl's mom taken into custody". CNN. 2008-08-30. Retrieved 2008-08-30.
  48. ^ "Cops: Trunk of Casey Anthony's car held a body". Orlando Sentinel. 2008-08-28.,0,5194122.story. Retrieved 2008-09-01.
  49. ^ "Caylee's mom goes home again". Orlando Sentinel. 2008-09-06.,0,5244190.story.
  50. ^ "Caylee's mom gets out of jail again". CNN. 2008-09-05.
  51. ^ "Casey Anthony makes bail, going home today". Orlando Sentinel. 2008-09-05.,0,7306870.story.
  52. ^ "Chief Judge Perry sets timeline". September 2, 2010.

[edit] External links


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