Casey Anthony Acquitted of Killing Daughter

Tuesday, 05 Jul 2011 02:42 PM

 

Share:
  Comment  |
   Contact Us  |
  Print  
|  A   A  
  Copy Shortlink

ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) — Casey Anthony was found not guilty Tuesday of killing her 2-year-old daughter in a case that captivated the nation as it played out on national television from the moment the toddler was reported missing three years ago.

Anthony, 25, wept as the judge read the verdict, which jurors reached after less than 11 hours of deliberation over two days. She was charged with first-degree murder, which could have brought the death penalty if she had been convicted.

Instead, she was convicted of only four counts of lying to investigators looking into the June 2008 disappearance of her daughter Caylee. Her body was found in the woods six months later and a medical examiner was never able to determine how she died.

She will be sentenced by the judge on Thursday and could receive up to a year in jail for each lying count.

Anthony's attorneys claimed that the toddler drowned accidentally in the family swimming pool, and that her seemingly carefree mother in fact was hiding emotional distress caused by sexual abuse from her father.

Prosecutors contended that Caylee was suffocated with duct tape by a mother who loved to party, tattooed herself with the Italian words for "beautiful life" in the month her daughter was missing and crafted elaborate lies to mislead everyone from investigators to her own parents.

Captivated observers camped outside the courthouse to jockey for coveted seats in the courtroom gallery, which occasionally led to fights among those desperate to watch the drama unfold.

Anthony did not take the stand during the trial, which started in mid-May. Because the case got so much media attention in Orlando, jurors were brought in from the Tampa Bay area and sequestered for the entire trial.

Anthony's attorney, Jose Baez, conceded that his client had told elaborate lies and invented imaginary friends and even a fake father for Caylee, but he said that doesn't mean she killed her daughter.

"They throw enough against the wall and see what sticks," Baez said of prosecutors during closing arugments. "That is what they're doing ... right down to the cause of death."

He tried to convince jurors that the toddler accidentally drowned in the family swimming pool and that when Anthony panicked, her father, a former police officer, decided to make the death look like a murder by putting duct tape on the girl's mouth and dumping the body in woods about a quarter-mile away. They said that Anthony's apparent carefree life hid emotional distress caused by sexual abuse from her father. Her father firmly denied both the cover-up and abuse claims. The prosecution called those claims "absurd," saying that no one makes an accident look like a murder.

Lead prosecutor Linda Drane Burdick concluded the state's case by showing the jury two side-by-side images. One showed Casey Anthony smiling and partying in a nightclub during the month Caylee was missing. The other was the tattoo she got a day before her family and law enforcement first learned of the child's disappearance.

"At the end of this case, all you have to ask yourself is whose life was better without Caylee?" Burdick asked. "This is your answer."

Prosecutors hammered on the lies Anthony, then 22, told from June 16, 2008, when her daughter was last seen, and a month later when sheriff's investigators were notified. Those include the single mother telling her parents she couldn't produce Caylee because the girl was with a nanny named Zanny — a woman who doesn't exist; that she and her daughter were spending time in Jacksonville, Fla., with a rich boyfriend who doesn't exist; and that Zanny had been hospitalized after an out-of-town traffic crash and that they were spending time with her.

© Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Share:
  Comment  |
   Contact Us  |
  Print  
  Copy Shortlink
Around the Web
Join the Newsmax Community
Please review Community Guidelines before posting a comment.
>> Register to share your comments with the community.
>> Login if you are already a member.
blog comments powered by Disqus
 
Email:
Retype Email:
Country
Zip Code:
 
Hot Topics
Follow Newsmax
Like us
on Facebook
Follow us
on Twitter
Add us
on Google Plus
Around the Web
You May Also Like

Sen. McCain Pitches FIFA to Take 2018 World Cup Away From Russia

Thursday, 31 Jul 2014 16:09 PM

Sen. John McCain wants soccer officials around the world to consider moving the 2018 World Cup games from Russia to send . . .

Justice Ginsburg, 81, Says She'll Stay on High Court 2 More Years

Thursday, 31 Jul 2014 15:51 PM

It looks like feisty octogenarian Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg plans to remain on the high court for at lea . . .

GOP Chairman Priebus: Party Competing for Black Votes

Thursday, 31 Jul 2014 15:39 PM

Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus told a national convention of black journalists on Thursday that t . . .

Most Commented

Newsmax, Moneynews, and Independent. American. are registered trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc. Newsmax TV, NewsmaxWorld, NewsmaxHealth, are trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc.

 
NEWSMAX.COM
America's News Page
©  Newsmax Media, Inc.
All Rights Reserved