06 July 2011

A long overdue post on the Casey Anthony verdict.

Well, three-plus years of speculation, lies, and bizarre behavior have been put to rest (supposedly).  Casey Anthony was found NOT GUILTY of brutally murdering her two year-old daughter, Caylee, in the summer of 2008.  She did not even report her missing for 31 days after anyone else last saw her.  Casey concocted a bizarre web of lies to explain the disappearance.  Caylee’s badly decomposed remains were finally found in December of 2008.  

Casey Anthony and her case has captivated the country for three years.  Sure, it died down between the initial shock/anger/etc but came right back to the surface when the trial began approximately 6 weeks ago.  There is no doubting that she is a pathological liar, and very narcissistic, but she was somehow acquitted.  
I thought that the prosecution did the best with what they had.  There was very minimal cold hard evidence that was found (no DNA or notable forensic evidence recovered that would connect Casey to the crime) and a lot of circumstantial evidence, which doesn’t always sway a nonpartisan jury.  Their fatal flaw, in my opinion, was charging her with murder one with the death penalty as a potential punishment.  They overcharged, and I think that could be a reason their case did not hit home with the jurors.  If I was responsible for bringing charges against her, I would have probably stuck with a lesser charge, such as aggravated manslaughter, first to avoid the taboo issue of the death penalty and second because of the lack of hard evidence that was found at the scene(s).  This is not to say that the defense had it easy; they were put in charge of defending this young woman who many see as an absolute monster.  They clearly put forth their argument effectively enough to get her acquitted of the most serious charges that were brought against her.
I was outraged when the verdict came out.  I have no doubt (and quite honestly I don’t think any sane person has any doubt) that Casey Anthony had SOMETHING to do with the death of her daughter.  But our justice system weighs heavily in the favor of the defendant, hence the whole “presumed innocent until proven guilty” mantra in law.  Perhaps the jurors simply did not have enough evidence to convict within the confines of the law, and that is why they acquitted her.  I certainly do not agree with this, but it is what it is and the case is done and over with.  She is due to be sentenced on lesser charges Thursday (most likely) and can serve a total of four years in prison for the counts she was convicted on (essentially lying and deceiving law enforcement).  She has served three years already.  Many are speculating that the judge will allow her to go free with time already served; however, I tend to think that he will make her stay in jail for a while longer, if only for her own safety.  There are many people out there who are absolutely livid with the verdict, people who probably wouldn’t hesitate to attempt to cause harm to Casey Anthony.  She has become an open target upon acquittal.  Media and paparazzi will be all over her (she will love the attention with her level of narcissism) and I think that the judge will take that into consideration when making his decision.   
I hope that one day the truth will come out about what happened to little Caylee.  She was such a beautiful child, and no child deserves to die at the hands of someone who is supposed to care for her, whether that be her mother or someone else.  For now, though, the Anthony family needs to heal, as much as they possibly can.  
God bless little Caylee, and rest in peace.  We know that you are watching down, shining your light down on us always.