Casey Anthony Killed Her Daughter by Accident?
In 2011, Casey Anthony was found not guilty of the murder of her two-year old child, Caylee. The verdict was met with public backlash with many people believing her to have killed the child with chloroform.
The child was reported missing by Casey’s mother, Cindy Anthony, in a 911 call where she said that she had not seen the child for more than 30 days. Casey gave a number of different statements to detectives regarding the whereabouts of her child-- at one point she claimed Caylee was with a nanny, then she claimed the same nanny had kidnapped the child. The name that she gave, Zenaida Fernandez-Gonzalez, was found to have no connection with the Anthony family.
Casey was arrested for the first time in July 2008, later being charged with child neglect, obstruction of a criminal investigation, and giving false statements to law enforcement. On December 11, 2008, a trash bag with the remains of the child was found in the woods near the Anthony residence. Caylee’s death was then ruled a homicide.
In July 2011, Casey was found not guilty of first-degree murder, aggravated manslaughter, and child abuse. However, she was found guilty of four counts of providing false information to law enforcement. She was sentenced to one year in jail, but was released after less than two weeks for time served. In January 2013, an appeals court reduced her convictions from four down to two.
Six years later the judge who presided over the case gave an interview to HLN. Belvin Perry, a former judge and now attorney, stated that he thinks the death of Casey’s child was an accidental chloroform overdose. Because there was no evidence of prior child abuse he thinks the death was genuinely accidental.
During the trial, two different explanations for the death were offered. The prosecution alleged that the child was killed with chloroform with her nose and mouth covered with duct tape and later dumped in the woods. The defense, on the other hand, alleged that the child drowned in the family’s pool and that Casey’s father helped her cover it up.
Perry stated that Casey had two distinct personas in court. One was specifically for the jury-- “Casey in the presence of the jury was very calm, very easygoing, mild-mannered, in a very sympathetic-appearing person.” However, he stated that when the jury wasn’t in the room, Casey’s attitude quickly changed. “She was quite in charge, quite demanding, and quite manipulative.”
Ultimately, Perry does not blame the jury. He understands that there are many different ways to view the case all-depending on perspective. Despite this he feels that there was enough evidence for a first or second-degree murder conviction. In the end, it is quite possible that the jurors simply didn’t know what happened. If there is that element of uncertainty then that constitutes reasonable doubt. In 2012, Casey made a statement to CNN that her daughter was her “greatest accomplishment.”
In early 2017, Casey was spotted at an anti-Trump political protest outside his estate in Palm Beach, Florida. She declined to speak on camera, but stated she was against Trump’s policies and agenda.