Casey Anthony Verdict: Not a Shocker

The Casey Anthony trial had acquittal written all over it.  The evidence about internet searches for chloroform was interesting and maybe compelling; her behavior after the “disappearance” was sickening and bizarre  - but it was never going to add up to proof beyond a reasonable doubt to convict when the jury knows the consequences are possibly a death sentence.  The defense lawyer seemed competent and engaging but it was not brilliant defense work, just smart – don’t do too much because he had to believe they didn’t have enough proof.  All the stuff in his opening about family abuse and such was strange, but since it was never testified about and could only have hurt his client’s cause and cost him some credibility.  It all likely had no effect on the jury.

Circumstantial cases are tough and I’m not sure the prosecution could have done anything different with the proof, but in hindsight, giving the jury some conviction to choose from above a misdemeanor and below a death sentence murder would have been helpful. 

Lastly, the news coverage about “WILL SHE TESTIFY?!?” was comical.  Of course she couldn’t testify.  What would she say: “I didn’t kill my child; I don’t know how to use the internet and search for chloroform; I was so upset about losing my child I just had to party my ass off for 30 days." Defense counsel wisely saw that her testifying would have turned a likely acquittal into a certain conviction. 

Whatever happened, Ms. Anthony will have to live with herself.  My sense is that her life will be public, and it won’t be pretty.

Category: Criminal Defense


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