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30
Jun

a dog day afternoon

In the IMDb (Internet Movie Database), for the movie, Dog Day Afternoon, it says:

A man robs a bank to pay for his lover’s operation; it turns into a hostage situation and a media circus.

In the case being tried right now in Orlando, The State of Florida v. Casey Anthony, it was a real dog day as the Anthony defense team focused on the Anthony family pet burials, and the testimony benefited the State of Florida.

A Dog Will Have its Day

Had the Anthony defense team stipulated that Casey Anthony learned how to double-bag dead family dogs in a blanket, wrapped up in a bag, and taped with heavy-duty tape, it would be one thing.  BUT to HAND this testimony about burying dogs in a pet cemetery directly to the State is quite another thing, and is totally unbelievable!

The Defense asked Cindy, Lee, and George specific questions regarding the burying of animals – their intention was to illicit testimony that duct-tape was used, and George was the primary person burying the beloved dogs.

Clearly, the plan backfired in way that was justifiably poetic because one could not help but be left with the sense that Casey Anthony bagged Caylee this way because she’d learned and seen how it was done since she was a young girl.

The icing on this case was Jeff Ashton’s question on cross:

  • Jeff:  Did you ever take a dead pet and throw it in a swamp?
  • George: No.

When Cindy testified about the dying dogs, Linda Drane Burdick followed up and asked Cindy if she’d ever given her animals chloroform, or taped their mouths shut with duct-tape?

Brilliant!

The Defense Rests

It is amazing we have come this far – that the end of this case is almost here!  Indeed, today marked the end of the Defense case (unless they’re allowed to put on Sir Rebuttal testimony), and it ended with a whimper, it fell flat as a decomposing pancake.

What did the Defense prove?

In opening statements, Jose Baez promised….

  • Molestation by Lee of Casey.  No evidence of.
  • Molestation by George since age of 8.  No evidence of.
  • Drowning. Suggestive of evidence, but no direct evidence.
  • Put Duct tape in George’s hands. Proven to be available to George, and Casey.
  • Smell from garbage.  Not proven.  Too many State witnesses testified to smell of decomposition in trunk.
  • Roy Kronk in possession of body?  No evidence of.
  • George throwing Caylee in woods?  No evidence of.
  • George is a ladies man?  Possibly, but irrelevant.

Granted, it is not incumbent on the defense to put on a case; but they have put on a case, to their detriment.  I can barely think of a single fact they have proved, can you?

It appears to me that absolutely nothing was presented to support the wild claims Baez made during his opening statement.

Cindy Anthony’s Big Blunder to Save Her Daughter

Last Friday, Cindy Anthony made the grave mistake of testifying that her work records were wrong to indicate that she worked during the week of March 17th to 21st, 2008.

Although her records say she was at work, and the State understood there was no dispute of this, Cindy Anthony got on the stand and testified that she was home and had made the searches for Chloroform.

The State of Florida turned to the company where Cindy worked at that time – Gentiva – and procured those records, proving that Cindy was indeed at work and could NOT have performed the search for Chloroform.

A serious question left on the table, did Jose Baez knowingly put Cindy Anthony on the stand knowing she would LIE?????

This is a serious matter, if true.  We will hear about the fall out from this after the trial, if there is any truth to it.

River Cruz aka Crystal HollowayAn Affair to Remember?

I want to believe George’s version of this affair with Crystal Holloway; however, the conclusion I ultimately come to is, So what?

George is not on trial, his daughter, Casey, is.

In essence, I felt this testimony also backfired on the defense.  It was explained that it was Casey, not George, who Crystal indicated George was referring to when he said mentioned the “accident snowballing out of control.”  Crystal supported this and indicated that she never thought George was involved.

There were other defense dogs today, but it’s too late in the evening…

…. and I am dog-tired!

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29
Jun

the courtroom as torture chamber

I find it’s difficult to write about the tumultuous day in the Orlando courtroom where Casey Anthony is being tried for the Capital Murder of her daughter, Caylee Marie Anthony.

It was a cruel day for George Anthony, Casey’s father.  It was not a Father’s Day for Roy Kronk, either.

If looks could kill. Photo: Red Huber, Orlando Sentinel

George is an ordinary man who has made ordinary mistakes.  His love for his Granddaughter, Caylee Marie Anthony was extraordinary – more to him than life itself.

Today was a stellar day for the State of Florida, thanks to the defense team.  Jose Baez, the most despicable attorney on the face of the planet, provided the State of Florida with extra energy today.

The performance of Jose Baez, especially today, was slimy; crueler than cruel.

His courtroom performance demonstrates, at least to me, why he should be immediately disbarred at the close of this horrendous case.

Baez tortured George Anthony today for hours.  Is this American Justice?  Can this be what our system is becoming?

When did the courtroom become a witness torture chamber?

George Anthony sat in that cold courtroom with his chest cut open while Baez poured acid into his open wounds.

It was painful to watch. Though I’m sure most everyone cheered the courage that George Anthony had today, no doubt they cried, too, seeing him lay there bleeding.

As he bled, George’s own flesh and blood, Casey Anthony, used her murderous eyes to cut him further.

Were those the eyes Caylee saw as she took her last breath?

My prayer for Caylee, just as her own mother snuffed the last breath from her, was that she was gently taken up by loving hands to a place we can’t see – beyond a veil, protected and loved. To the same place where her “Jo-Jo” wanted to go to be with her.

When George was explaining his suicide attempt, which Baez cruelly mocked, he said, through tears:

My emotional state even through today is it’s very hard to accept that I don’t have a grand-daughter…

I just felt like it was the right time to go and be with Caylee, I just decided that was the time for me to get away from all this, to spend time with Caylee..I didn’t want to be in this world anymore….

His voice trailed as he waited for Baez to land another blow to his already beaten heart.

Hell will have a special room for the likes of Jose Baez.

Anyone who would attack another human being at their lowest and most vulnerable – just when their heart is hanging out and freshly bleeding –  is inhumane and certainly does not deserve to be called an officer of the court – a seeker of the truth.

Clearly Baez never learned the Golden Rule for defense lawyers.  Juries do not like cruel defense lawyers and are likely to punish the client as a result.

The cruelty of this defense and this murderous daughter is coming full circle and will result in a charge of Murder One and the disbarment of Jose Baez.

The accusations, the lies, the innuendos from Baez have all back-fired.  The State will bring it all forward in their closing statements, and will remind the jurors that the truth  and this defense team are strangers, as the Honorable Judge Stan Strickland once said about Casey Anthony.

The boomerang effect has landed a death-blow to this defense.

And, it serves the defense right that their last witness of the day, Dr. Sally “Hello Dolly” Karioth, was more Carol Channing, singing “Before the Parade Passes By,” than she was grief counselor hired to help the defense.  Jeff Ashton skillfully sliced and diced her testimony so skillfully she never knew what hit her!  (By the way, did Judge Perry not see that she was chewing gum on the stand?)

And, lastly, Brandon Sparks, who appears to be a very troubled young man, blew it when he referred to his father as, “Roy Kronk,” and then as his “biological Father,” while testifying.

Jurors are not stupid; they will smell a son’s vendetta from forty paces.

Two children destroyed two fathers today.

28
Jun

it was quite a good day (God Bless Mr. Kronk)

Today’s parade of defense witnesses, in the State v. Casey Anthony trial, didn’t perform too well for the defense, however, they were colorful and in some instances, provocative.

In short, today’s defense witnesses were quite good for the State of Florida.

Here was today’s line-up:

  1. Joe Jordan – He was a Texas EquuSearch volunteer who served as a team leader, and originally thought he’d searched the area where Caylee’s remains were found, but admitted later that he was mistaken. He was subsequently rabidly pursued by the defense who wanted to use his original testimony to prove that the body could not have been in those woods at the time because Joe Jordan said he didn’t see a body.  In an email, Joe Jordan had told Yuri Mellich that Caylee’s body couldn’t have been there because he was sure he and his team had thoroughly searched the area.  But, the defense is STILL pursuing his original testimony in the hopes it will give rise to some reasonable doubt. There came a time when the defense was pursuing Mr. Jordan for his story, which troubled him so much he decided to tape his conversation with Morton Smith, investigator from the defense, without his knowledge.  It is against the law for a citizen to record anyone without their knowledge (law enforcement may do so).  Mr. Jordan, when questioned by Cheney Mason about being possibly charged with a felony, it scared him and he began to plead the fifth, which the State objected to.  There were lengthy side-bars regarding this issue, and ultimately, the jury was asked to disregard the question and answer.
  2. George Anthony – He was asked if he knew River Cruz aka Crystal Halloway.  He was asked if he had a romantic relationship with her; he denied this.  Note: I believe that River originally denied there was a romantic relationship, too.  George was very defensive on the stand and it appeared that he was hiding something.  And, uh, there was no mention of molestation, drowning, or duct tape!  Hmmmm.
  3. Cindy Anthony – She was asked about whether she had told Dominic Casey and James Hoover to search off of Suburban Drive for Caylee based on a psychic’s tip.  I clearly remember that Yuri Mellich wrote in his police report that Cindy Anthony had claimed she’d sent people out to those woods and Caylee was not there.  Today, she completely denied it.
  4. Lee Anthony – Lee said the exact opposite of Cindy.  He did have an argument with his mother about sending Dominic Casey in the woods to look for Caylee.  Cindy told Lee that she’d gotten a psychic tip and he was very angry.  It was the first time his family was going to look for a “dead Caylee” and he was very angry. Frank George asked him if he was completely sold on his sister’s lies at that time.  Strangely, Lee smiled, shook his head as if amused, and said, “yes, and no.”
  5. Yuri Mellich – he agrees that Cindy Anthony told him (as he’d written in his report), Cindy told him she’d “sent her people walk in that area and there was nothing in the area then.”
  6. Roy Kronk– Mr. Kronk was a FANTASTIC witness!  He made

    Roy Kronk - Caylee's Angel on Earth

    Cheney Mason, who questioned him, look like a bumbling, mumbling fool!  Mr. Mason did his best impression of a tough as nails but folksy and smart lawyer, giving “knowing” glances to the jury, as if to say Mr. Kronk was a big ole liar when, in truth, Mr. Mason looked like the big ole liar.  Oh, it was a beautiful thing.  Mr. Kronk is Caylee’s angel; were it not for Roy Kronk no one may have found Caylee Marie Anthony.  Thank you, Mr. Kronk, and GREAT JOB today!

  7. David Dean – Another meter reader, expressed to Roy Kronk that the area off of Suburban Drive “would be a great place to put a body.”  During cross, Linda Drane-Burdick asked Mr. Dean, “Why did you feel this area was a good spot to maybe look for Caylee?”  To which Mr. Dean indicated that in the jail videos of the family visiting Casey Anthony that she had told the family she felt Caylee was close by.  This was not good for the defense!   Meter Readers are now all heroes in my book, by the way.
  8. Alex Roberts – Roy Kronk’s supervisor, a senior meter reader, supported the series of events.
  9. Corrections Officers – Two officers were there to testify that Casey Anthony was a model citizen.  This is totally irrelevant to this trial and the Judge did would not allow their testimony.
  10. Jesse Grund – Out of the presence of the jury, Mr. Grund said that Casey had told him Lee Anthony had “groped” her on two occasions.  The defense would sure like to have this self-serving hearsay into evidence.  They’d like to have the chance to have Casey’s allegations into the record.  The judge is going to rule on this tomorrow.  There’s no way this is coming in, but the defense can dream – let ‘em spend the night dreaming!

In other news today, we learned that the State, in their rebuttal case, is going to call people from Cindy’s former workplace, Gentiva.  The individuals are from the Internet Technology (IT) group.  No doubt they are going to dispute Cindy’s recent testimony about not being at work the days the chloroform searches were performed on the family computer.  (You may remember, Cindy claimed that she was home that day and most likely made the “chloroform” searches – not Casey.)

Cindy claimed the only way to tell if she was at work would be to go back and look at her emails, but she’s sure those emails are no longer in existence.  Hah!  What Cindy doesn’t realize is that nothing on the Internet is gone forever!

The defense team told the Judge today they have only about 6 or seven witnesses left to testify, one of which is a grief counselor (who never met Casey, by the way), but Jeff Ashton was not able to depose the witness on a Saturday as he was dealing with other defense witness depositions (Furton and Rodriquez).  Jeff Ashton is going to be at a disadvantage as a result of not having the opportunity to depose this witness.  It remains to be seen if this witness will be allowed to testify.

Judge Perry advised the defense that when the defense is ready to rest their case, he will advise Casey Anthony that she has the right to either testify or not, and it’s solely her decision.

The defense case is going downhill so fast, and so completely, the only way to get the evidence of accidental drowning and the molestation out there, she will have to testify.

It’s a bad idea, of course, but, hey, when you’re very life is on the line, maybe it’s not such a bad idea after all?

27
Jun

Competent to face death

So, we learned today the mystery surrounding Saturday’s sudden court recess in the State v. Casey Anthony trial.

Casey Anthony’s team of defense attorneys determined that, lo and behold, after three years of hearings and one month of trial proceedings, Casey Anthony was not competent to stand trial.

And we thought it was the defense team who were the incompetent ones!

Why all of a sudden is Casey Anthony not competent?  No one saw this one coming!

I agree with Bill Shaeffer, my favorite Orlando Attorney, who said it could be that Casey is asking to testify in her own defense, and the lawyers are advising her not to. The defense undoubtedly knows it would be a disaster if she were to take the stand, is this the reason she’s suddenly incompetent?

Three independent psychologists examined Casey Anthony this weekend.  Their reports were submitted to Judge Perry who found that Casey is indeed competent to stand trial.

As I wrote yesterday, the defense is damned if they do and damned if they don’t ask Casey to testify.  She is the only person who can bring the molestation claims against her brother and her father into the trial; and she is also the only one who will be able to testify to the drowning claims.

It’s likely that the defense, in particular Cheney Mason who filed the motion to determine competence, wants a CYA (cover-yer-arse), type of record.  They likely want to be certain that appellate courts will see that the defense would not recommend she take the stand.

Or, perhaps it’s the other way around?  Does the defense want her to take the stand and she refuses, hence she’s crazy?!

Just like this weekend’s speculation – this is my best guess today (Bill Shaeffer agrees, so I’m in good company!)

The Issue of the Death Penalty

Attorney Ann Finnell was in court today.  The jury hadn’t seen her since their voir dire in Clearwater.

She has a smooth style, and her succinct questioning of witnesses is excellent.  It was nice to see a competent attorney on the defense side of the aisle.

Ann Finnell also made some news today as she recently filed a motion asking the court to declare the Florida Statute on the death penalty unconstitutional.

This motion is filed on the heels of a recent decision by a federal judge in Miami.

On June 22, 2011, Judge Jose Martinez, ruled that Florida’s sentencing of the death penalty is unconstitutional.

The reason?  Because currently juries take into account particular aggravating factors in their decisions regarding the death penalty, but jurors do not record which factor they weighed above others – which factors they may have agreed upon (if there are multiple factors), and which they did not agree upon.  Therefore, no one is made aware of the details of their decisions.

The recent ruling also finds troubling the fact that in death penalty trials, the decision to vote for the death penalty does not have to be unanimous.

At this time, during sentencing, only the Judge has to provide opinions surrounding the aggravating factors.

The view of people in the legal community say this ruling will not end the death penalty in Florida, but it WILL be argued anew as a result of this recent decision.

According to the Miami Herald, reporter David Ovalle writes:

The ruling, likely to be argued in appellate courts for years, does not strike down Florida’s capital-punishment law. But it could force lawmakers to change the statute, and could give recent convicts new avenues for appeal, legal experts say.

Read the Miami Herald article.

Currently, Florida courts allow jurors to make death penalty recommendations that are not unanimous decisions.

A twelve panel jury only requires a majority vote.  It also does not require jurors to record which aggravating factor encouraged their individual decisions.  Therefore, it is unknown if all jurors in the majority would have agreed unanimously on specific aggravators.

In addition, trial judges, such as Judge Belvin Perry, have the authority to override the decision of the jurors, whether they decide for or against the death penalty. In other words, if the jury decides the defendant should be sentenced to death, the trial judge can sentence life. Conversely, if the jurors decide life in prison is their recommendation, the judge can overrule them and sentence the defendant to death.

Furthermore, the argument used in Judge Martinez’ ruling, explains that if both the jurors and the trial judge vote for death for the defendant, there is no way to know which aggravating or mitigating factors were relied on by either the judge or the jury.

Judge Martinez determined the death penalty unconstitutional because of these very facts.  The case in which his decisions were decided is the case of a defendant named Paul H. Evans.  Evans was convicted and sentenced to death in 1991, for his actions in a murder-for-hire case.

An Assistant Public Defender in Miami, discussing the death penalty, remarked that it was ironic that it takes a majority vote to send a defendant to jail for life, but only a majority of jurors to sentence a defendant to death.

Today, Ann E. Finnell, attorney representing Casey Anthony, filed a motion stating that the decision by Federal Judge Martinez, makes the death penalty in the Casey Anthony case unconstitutional.  She also wants a new trial with a new jury.  It is highly doubtful the Judge will decide in favor of this motion.  I have every reason to believe that Judge Perry has already thought long and hard about the implications of this recent decision as it relates to the Anthony trial.

Regardless, I do hope the death penalty aspect of this motion prevails.

26
Jun

damned if she does; damned if she doesn’t (take the stand)

The incompetence of Jose Baez has been the subject of many of my posts. I will never understand how a lawyer without ANY experience in Murder One cases, would keep the Casey Anthony case.  Moreover, who could believe that a case that has America transfixed, would end up having a defense and lawyers that are brunt of jokes and clear laughing stocks?

credit: Orlando Sentinel

Let’s say, very hypothetically, that Casey is innocent and Jose is her lawyer.

No, let’s not.  The outcome would be tragic.

The organization, the Innocence Project , fights for the lives of thousands of innocent people as a result of incompetent lawyers.  We can only hope that the American Bar Association will come up with a better system to monitor the work of lawyers.  Likewise, we can only hope that criminal behavior could somehow, magically, be curtailed.

But, when there are terrible lawyers trying cases they are not qualified to try, as obviously happens, what can be done?  Apparently, the answer is: Nothing.

Objection!

Couldn’t Judge Belvin Perry have put Baez on a shorter leash?  Couldn’t there have been “OBJECTIONS!” to that horrible opening statement of which no evidence exists?  Did the State want Jose to take this route because they knew he’d be digging a hole he’d never be able to climb out of?

I’m told by a criminal defense attorney, here in Broward County Florida, that Jose Baez would not have been able to give that opening statement in this county.  He would have been stopped in his tracks.

This makes me wonder why it was allowed to happen in Orlando Florida?  Did Baez make a promise to the Judge that he could back this up?  The only way that Baez can get this evidence in would be to put Casey on the stand.  Did Baez promise the Judge and the State that Casey Anthony would go on the stand and testify to this?

I doubt it. However, I believe that may be what’s coming.  Is that why the court recessed so early this past Saturday?  Did Baez and Cheney finally realize Judge Perry would not let this drowning or molestation hearsay testimony in?

Is putting Casey Anthony on the stand the ultimate, final, Hail Mary?

Putting Casey Anthony on the stand would be criminal in itself!  She has felony convictions!   The convictions would support giving her the death penalty if she’s found guilty and would be revealed in cross examination.

However, the alternative is to put on NO evidence of this theory and get decimated when the State of Florida reminds the jury of all the promises that Baez made during the Defense opening statement.

Damned if they do; damned if they don’t is the predicament they’re in.

God Help the Uninformed

Normal American citizens have not got a clue about their rights under the law.  The Anthony’s clearly didn’t know how to find competent representation, but their instincts told them Jose Baez was the wrong lawyer for Casey (the Anthony’s were also thinking about Caylee, convinced Casey and her lawyer should be able to assist in that effort), but Casey knew she was in trouble, and for whatever reason, she trusted Baez and has stuck with him.

And, what is beyond the beyond of malpractice is the fact that those jail videos were entered into evidence with out redaction’s!  There, for the jury to see and hear, were the Anthony’s denigrating Jose Baez – in front of the jury!

If a criminal lawyer has no credibility in the eyes of the jurors, the client is doomed.  This is the death-knell for the client. The bells announcing the funeral are rung by an incompetent defense.

Both Baez and Cheney Mason have done such a horrendous job thus far, one would think Casey would see incompetence at work?

I read about another absurd murder case today that was tried by an attorney by the name of Joseph Rakofsky.  The parallels in that case to the Anthony trial, are uncanny.

Granted, when Casey Anthony was initially arrested, the charges were not murder, but the murder charges were written on the wall very early in the day, and everyone knew it.

This case smelled like a winner to Jose Baez and by God, he was going to use it to his advantage!

But, why would he accept a case, where the death penalty – a human life – is on the line, when he has NO experience trying such cases?

This is what has driven me crazy about Jose Baez.  He has no right to try this case and there should be some system in place to avoid this kind of malpractice from happening in the future.

This is a Death Penalty case!  He has a life in his very hands!  I know, I must sound melodramatic, but how could he – knowing a very life is in his hands????

Baez was greedy.  He wanted to use this case as his Internship to learn how to try a murder case before he was ready.

It is both ego and hubris that drive Jose Baez.  It was fame, money, and recognition he wanted.  The media attention started early, as you can see from this screen shot, and he was loving it.

Baez pretending concern for Caylee

Most any competent attorney steers far away from the media as you wouldn’t want to be held to any theory of the case because things change, criminal trials are fluid and ever-changing.  For instance, Jose Baez, in his opening statement, said Caylee Marie Anthony died on June 16th, 2008 as a result of drowning in the family pool.

What about all the “innocent” claims?  What about all the hundreds of television appearances where he painted his client as not guilty because the baby was dumped in the woods while Casey was in jail, therefore she (Casey) was innocent!

He was not doing his client any favors by appearing in the media!  In fact, he is responsible for creating the media bonanza, in my opinion!

Even though all the television appearances that Baez made from the early days of this case made Casey look even more guilty and made Baez look really bad, he continued to appear on television,  He even hired people to “handle” the media for him.

He wanted this case so badly because he wanted a name for himself.  Now he has a name, but it’s not a good one.  Who on earth would hire him now?

The Anthony’s must be the stupidest people on the planet not to see what Jose Baez was doing.

Do the Anthony’s really think this theory is believable given all the facts in this case? How can they believe a drowning makes sense?  And, molestation made Casey hide for 31 days?

The theory makes no sense!

If Caylee drowned why fight the evidence of decomposition in the car that is so powerful?  Why would it be such a stretch, given this theory, to say “Yes, Casey drove around with Caylee in the trunk for a while.”  They cannot address the decomposition because of the chloroform levels.

The chloroform evidence negates the drowning story.  Plain and simple, end of story.

It’s impossible to know what is going on behind the scenes in this case.

My view is this:  If Casey Anthony were innocent this case would be even more tragic because not only would we mourn for a beautiful child whose life was lost, we could also be mourning for the legal system gone seriously a muck.

That scares me a whole lot more.

Read about Joseph Rakofsky, who reminds me of Jose Baez in so many ways.

25
Jun

casey trial ended suddenly – speculation is just that

It’s very interesting to hear the excited speculation that was raised at the sudden end of today’s planned testimony, in the State v. Casey Anthony trial.

Today began (like many other days in that Orlando courtroom), with a defense discovery violation.

Jeff Ashton again brought up another glaring discovery violation as it relates to defense witness, Dr. Kenneth Furton, who is a professor and researcher with Florida International University (FIU), in Miami, Florida.

Arguments began regarding the discovery violation issue – Jose Baez was extremely recalcitrant and in denial about what could possibly be the problem.

Baez said, “We’re not going to go through this!”  The Judge said, “You’d think this would have grown old by now, but I guess some things never change.”

Then Mr. Mason alerted the Judge of another matter they needed to attend to.

The video on WFTV has the file of the first part of this morning’s session.  You’ll be able to see for yourself what the issues are.  Click here for the video.

The attorney’s went back behind closed doors for quite a while, when Judge Perry came back and announced there was a legal matter that required their attention – and it was unrelated to what was previously discussed (the Dr. Furton discovery violation).

HLN was all over the map trying to speculate. We’re all speculating, of course!  I get a giggle when HLN speculates, though.  HLN had a story on whether Casey Anthony was crying when she came out of the closed door session with the attorneys, since she was blowing her nose?  (Maybe she has a cold?)

And, then there was the story of George Anthony crying today since he was seen with a tissue.  George was clearly blowing his nose!

I don’t know if HLN brought this bit of speculation up, too, but someone on Twitter asked if a plea deal was offered today, hence the tears from George and Casey.

There was speculation centered around a mistrial (which I think makes the most sense). Oh, and there was more speculation that Casey wants a new defense team.  (Something she should have done on July 17, 2008.)

HLN speculated about the picture of Caylee (below), shown yesterday during Jose Baez’ direct with Cindy Anthony.  Was the picture doctored?

Caylee (?) at Anthony Home

Is it really Caylee?   Maybe the picture was staged?  Is that really Caylee, or is it another child?

Blah blah blah blah – the talking heads talked.

Honestly, I can’t help speculating as well!  

For what it’s worth, my speculation is this:  Yesterday, Cheney Mason brought up the motion for mistrial which is still on the table.  (Cheney Mason asked the Judge about it yesterday, near the end of the day.)

Judge Perry told Mr. Mason, if he was to entertain this motion for mistrial, it would require a full evidentiary hearing, and not just lawyers flapping their gums.  Mr. Mason concurred, and then the subject was dropped.

Did Mr. Mason bring up something solid with regards to this motion that sent everyone scurrying away?

I don’t think so, but who knows!

We may never know the answers to today’s abrupt change of plans because these closed-door discussions were sealed by Judge Perry.

The facts we do know surround the attorneys needing additional time to do some work, take more depositions, and so on.  It must be difficult to work on your case when you’re in trial all day.  No doubt the attorney’s are stressed and need more time to do the actual work that is required in the case (i.e. motions to write.)

After all, they only have Sunday off!

Reportedly, Jeff Ashton is taking this free time to do another deposition of Dr. Furton.  Court is resuming as usual on Monday morning, and it appears that things will be business as usual.

The Discovery Issue….

Dr. Furton, apparently scheduled to testify today, has come to court with some new ideas and opinions.  Jose Baez handed Assistant State Attorney, Jeff Ashton, a new PowerPoint demonstration created by Dr. Furton – today.  I believe this is at least the third time Jose Baez has played this trick – he faces contempt charges already, you’d think he’d learn his lesson by now?

When Dr. Furton testified in the Frye hearings, Dr. Furton came off as a “wanna-be Dr. Arpad Vass,” in my opinion.

During the Frye hearings, Dr. Furton would have liked us to believe there was no smell of decomposition; rather it was a result of the infamous trash, which is all garbage, which was left in the trunk of Casey’s car.

In addition, Dr. Furton’s bases his findings and his experiments on separate body parts decomposing.  Not entire bodies.

There’s a big difference between the two events, as can be imagined.  Dr. Furton would not concede, during the Frye Hearings, that there would be differing results from a whole body, versus a body part going through the decomposition process.

In short, he was not a convincing expert witness.

We’ll see how all this plays out Monday morning!

Happy weekend, everyone!

24
Jun

any theory will do

Cindy is at it again.

Those of us who have been following the case surrounding the murder of the dear little Caylee Marie Anthony, saw it coming.   I’m referring to the Anthony family’s lies and cover-ups.  The only problem is, they can’t keep their stories completely straight, and that is not going to play well for the jury.

The strangest testimony today came from Lee Anthony.  Lee broke down when he recalled the horrible hurt he felt about not being included in the news that Casey was pregnant, and was not asked to be there when Caylee was born.  You know what? I love my brothers, but I’m not sure they’d be there for the birth of my child.   But, Lee wanted to be there – he wanted to be included but said he was ignored.  He sobbed over the memory of it.

It was very curious why the defense failed to use the opportunity today to ask Lee about paternity.   It seemed like the perfect time for the defense to bring up their horrible defense theory.  Have they dropped the idea of Lee’s alleged abuse?  Will the full burden of abuse rest on George Anthony now?

Judge Belvin Perry today had questions about the theory of the defense of Casey Anthony – the jury has to be wondering, too.

One aspect of the “theory” was brought up today regarding the pool ladder.  Cindy Anthony and the defense would like the jury to believe that because the pool ladder was inadvertently left on the pool one day, Caylee must have drowned that day.  But, on cross examination, it was revealed that Cindy is not really sure what day the ladder was left up on the pool.

It sure appears as if profound jealousy is a weird dynamic in that family.  I cannot begin to know the truth of the matter, but my reaction to hearing Lee today is that both Casey and Lee may have had a deep hunger for love and affection from their mother that was never fulfilled.

I tell you, the Anthony family dynamic could fill an entire folio of Shakespeare’s tragedies.

The bottom line is, the Anthony’s will lie on the stand to save Casey.  I don’t think they will condone the molestation theory, of course, but Cindy sure buys the drowning theory.  Regardless, the defense is still looking for their theory; so is Judge Perry because he asked the defense to clarify it.

Judge Perry told the defense that he’d thought the theory of the defense was that Caylee drowned, and Casey covered it up due to the years of abuse.

Cheney Mason confirmed that was their theory, but then added, “among other things.”  This prompted sidebar #32.

Well, I really couldn’t count the sidebars, but more time was spent in sidebars than in testimony today.

Court starts at 9:00 a.m. tomorrow, and is scheduled to be in session until 2:00 or 3:00.


23
Jun

cindy’s hand-sanitizer scare? true?

The testimony of Cindy Anthony was not a bombshell, or a major development despite the news outlets using it as such.  It was simply a replay of the conniving Cindy Anthony we had previously come to know.

Cindy Anthony testifying today

I was very surprised at Cindy’s about-face today.  I think the State of Florida was, too.  But, there is no way that Cindy will get away with this for long – the state still has a rebuttal case to put on.

What Cindy Anthony fails to realize is that her testimony today can be verified.  She will continue to be impeached and this will only hurt her daughter, not help her!

Although Cindy’s work records verify she was at work the day of the computer searches, she said she remembers not working those days. Huh?    I don’t remember the days I take off of work, especially not three years ago!  Do you?

The State of Florida and Law Enforcement will be able to verify what Cindy said today; I have no doubt they will.

Cindy said she remembers searching the computer for a bunch of things. One reason she searched that particular day?  Because a colleague at work emailed her about dangerous issues resulting hand-sanitizers and children.

Cindy called it a “hand-sanitizer scare.”

I ran a quick search for “hand sanitizer scare” and found nothing about a scare in 2008.

Cindy also claimed she searched for Chlorophyll on the very day because of concern for her little Yorkie eating bamboo leaves. And she looked up “neck-breaking” because a friend was in a terrible car accident.

Do these kind of elaborate lies sound familiar?  The apple doesn’t fall far from the tree, does it?

Cindy’s Hand-Sanitizer Scare

The issues with “hand-sanitizers” Cindy said was a “scare” in March 2008.  A New York Times article, on March 21, 2006, says otherwise. Here is the link: http://www.nytimes.com/2006/03/21/health/21cons.html

A Chicago Times article, on May 22, 2007, discusses the possibilities of getting “drunk” from them: http://featuresblogs.chicagotribune.com/features_julieshealthclub/2007/05/getting_drunk_o.html

An ABC News article from May 23, 2006, discusses that hand-sanitizers are no subsitute for water: http://abcnews.go.com/Health/story?id=1993859

ParentDish, on June 26, 2007, discusses how hand-sanitizers can poison children:  http://www.parentdish.com/2007/06/26/hand-sanitizer-can-poison-your-children/

Google Search for Hand Sanitizer Scare shows no news in 2008.  Click here

I truly don’t think that Cindy did anything to hurt the State’s case today.  In fact, I think her lies were helpful for a couple of reasons.

Cindy successfully….

  1. …Reminded the jury of additional details regarding computer searches, such as the “MySpace” hits which were interspersed with the “how to make chloroform” hits/searches.
  2. …Pointed out that she didn’t know about or use MySpace at that time.  But there were only seconds between the MySpace hits and the “how to make chloroform” hits/searches.
  3. …proved she is unreasonable.  No one could possibly remember their computer searches from three years ago, much less pinpoint those searches to a specific day!
  4. …Showed the jury she was stretching the truth when Linda Drane-Burdick impeached her, asking if her memory is better now that she’s changed medication.  We all know medication doesn’t IMPROVE your memory

On the stand today, Cindy was overly long-winded, indicating to me that she was exaggerating.  When cross examined, she was not nearly as clear and changed her testimony by referring to “possibilities,” while trying very hard to fill in details that were ridiculous, i.e. remembering the day and time of computer searches made three years ago.

This is beyond the boundary of reason

When Ms. Burdick asked, “Did you look up the word “inhalation?”  Cindy said, “Yes.”   And she went on to add other “household items like alcohol” and other toxic chemicals that she confirmed searching for.

Cindy is trying to save her daughter, but at the expense of justice for her beloved granddaughter.

Justice is only found via a search for the truth….

Today’s Testimony Notes

There were other wins for the State today. FBI Hair Specialist, Stephen Shaw, did a great job for the State of Florida in explaining how to recognize Post-Mortem Hair Banding on a strand of hair.

The defense dug their own grave by calling Stephen Shaw.  He was very strong for the State.  Even stronger today then when he originally testified for the State.

There were other witnesses, too.  Dr. Barry Logan, a forensic toxicologist (who is also a wanna-be analytic chemist), testified for the defense, though only allowed to testify about toxicology.

What Dr. Logan really wanted to do, however, was to disprove Dr. Arpad Vass’ findings.

Dr. Vass, you may remember, is the charismatic researcher from the Oak Ridge National Laboratory who testified about the compounds from the trunk of Casey Anthony’s car – decomposition; and the very high levels of chloroform.

In short, the defense would really like Dr. Vass’ testimony to go away, but Dr. Logan was not allowed to discuss the type of testing Dr. Vass does!

To tell you the truth, the defense appears to be in a cloud, or a fog.

They put on evidence that’s like a sling-shot, ricocheting back at them.   It’s bizarre!

They’re just prolonging the inevitable outcome of this case.

22
Jun

today was just half as bad for Anthony defense

I’m sure it was a relief to the defense that evidence and testimony in the State of Florida v. Casey Anthony trial, lasted only half of the day today.  Instead of a day-full of defense witnesses turning into witnesses for the State, they only suffered half the hurt.

There were no inroads made by the defense again today as they continued to point out the “lack” of evidence in the State’s case.

It’s interesting that the defense, rather than attacking the evidence presented by the State, are presenting testimony to illustrate the lack of evidence found.

Perhaps this strategy would work in another case – a far different case.   Not in this one. Common sense tells us this will not work in this case.  Why?  The amount of circumstantial evidence is staggering.

Remember Scott Peterson’s trial for the murder of Lacy Peterson and the death of her unborn child?  That was a circumstantial case, too.  There was far less evidence in that case and he’s on death row right now.

The duct tape, the baby blanket, and the laundry bag clearly ties Casey Anthony to the crime.  The smell and evidence of decomposition in Casey’s car links her further, as does a long strand of Caylee’s hair found in the trunk of the car, and showing the dark banding near the hair-root indicating it came from a dead child. And there’s even more evidence…

The evidence is strong and it clearly and profoundly links Casey Anthony directly to the crime.   As does, the 31 days. The tattoo. The lies. The made up people and places. The computer searches. The evidence of chloroform.  The duct tape. And on and on and on.

The defense  has a miserable story to tell, as we heard during their opening, but to date they have not whispered a word of it.

A parade of six defense witnesses today brought little to bear for the defense.

The defense will get no where in this case as long as Jeff Ashton has an opportunity to cross examine the defense witnesses.  He is brilliant, passionate and completely devoted to finding the truth.

Today’s defense witnesses:

  • FBI forensic geologist Maureen Bottrell,
  • FBI forensic toxicologist Madeline Montgomery,
  • Dr. Michael Sigman of the University of Central Florida,
  • Dr. Michael Rickenbach,
  • Dr. Andrew Kramer, professor and head of the anthropology department at University of Tennessee, and
  • FBI lab technician Karen Korsberg Lowe.

All much ado about nothing.

Where’s the beef Jose?

21
Jun

it gets more worser each day

What happened today in that Orlando courtroom, where the State of Florida is trying Casey Anthony for the murder of her child, Caylee Anthony, demonstrates how bad the case looks for the defendant.

It was a day where things kept piling on and making matters worse for the defense in this case.  What’s worse, it is entirely the fault of Jose Baez, the lead attorney on the case who, rather than seeking the truth, is playing tricks in a desperate attempt to gain advantage.

It was a really bad day – no, worse……

One of the most humiliating moments for the defense happened as a result of the Judge laying down a very cogent record for the contempt charges he will level against Jose Baez at the conclusion of the trial.

What must have been extremely humiliating for Jose Baez came as a result of Judge Belvin Perry questioning the defense team’s Touch-DNA witness, Richard Eikelenbloom.  Judge Perry asked Mr. Eikelenbloom a series of questions regarding if Jose Baez told him he needs to render an opinion, and write a report in this case.   Answer:  No.

The witness said, Jose Baez informed him on Saturday, June 18, 2011, to write a report and give his opinion.

Ouch!

Jose Baez, desperately needing to ambush the State, faced sanctions today as it pertains to some of what Mr. Richard Eikelenbloom can testify to.  The Judge did not allow any testimony with regards to the absence of DNA in decomposition fluid found in the trunk of the White Pontiac Sunbird, driven by Casey Anthony.

However, the Judge left the door open for a Frye hearing on the matter.  It is up to Jose Baez to determine if this is something he wants to do.  Um.  I think Jose has bigger fish to FRYE, at this point.

It gets even worser….

Today’s parade of defense witnesses were very helpful to the State’s case.  Dr. Jane Boch, the Botanist, was the female version of Dr. Spitz.  She was so bad, so unbelievably bad, it was embarrassing.

With a straight face she said, repeatedly, the remains could only have been in the area for a minimum of two weeks.

Oh, really?

During the cross, Jeff Ashton (again showing his brilliance!), asked, “Dr. Boch, were you aware that remains of the victim were discovered buried four inches under the muck?  Wouldn’t it take more than two weeks for the muck to bury a bone in that fashion?”

The response from Dr. Boch, “Perhaps dogs, or coyotes buried the bone?”

Jeff Ashton’s jaw dropped before he said, “No more questions.”

So, that was the end of Dr. Boch.  She added nothing. Absolutely nothing but a chuckle or two.

And worser still…

And then there was the testimony of Dr. Marcus Wise of Oakridge National Laboratory.

Oh, this was bad for the defense.  This was unbelievably bad because this witness  turned into a State’s witness during the Defense’s direct examination!!!

Dr. Wise was freely discussing the unexplained and high levels of chloroform found by he and Dr. Vass in the carpet samples they tested.

And, if that were not bad enough, Dr. Wise (a very good witness) had an inordinate amount of praise for Dr. Vass.

It was a beautiful thing!

And even more worser….

The most incredible moment today, however, came before today’s lunch break.  Jose Baez was full of disgust at the State suddenly releasing computer data from June 16th, 2008, as well as releasing discovery concerning a woman who was incarcerated in close vicinity of Casey Anthony, and whose child drowned, in 2007, in a pool.

The child’s grandfather discovered the drowned child.  The grandfather performed CPR and called 911.  Sadly, the child could not be saved, though the family did all they could to save him.

The State advised they may not use this information, but they wanted to turn it over to the defense, since the info is discoverable.

If it is learned that Casey may have known about this story, it would not be a stretch to conclude how she’d use this scenario to craft her lies about George Anthony, since we know she uses real incidents to assist her in the lies she tells.

Saving the worstest for last….

The biggest bombshell today, in my opinion, came when Jose Baez thought he had a clear case of Tit for Tat, or “Gotcha!” as far as discovery violations.

When Casey Anthony allowed Law Enforcement to have her home computer to search for “clues,” a copy of the computer hard drive was also furnished to the defense – in the event they wanted to investigate it.

Inexplicably, the defense failed to do its due-diligence and look at the data on the hard-drive.

The State did.  (Insert smily-face here.)

Since the defense made it’s horrific claims of what happened on June 16, 2008, the last day that dear little Caylee was seen alive, the State went back to look at that day of computer activity.

Bonanza?

Apparently so.   We don’t know the details of what was found on the June 16th date, but the State will use this information, if needed.

Linda Drane-Burdick said, in the event Casey Anthony testifies, they will use it against her, or they will use it to rebut any testimony the defense intends to put forward about that day.

Apparently, there was activity on that computer, there were instant messages (IM’s), too.

No doubt Casey’s IM’s tell a story that is very different than the version Jose Baez told in his opening statements!

Can it get worser?

20
Jun

If there’s no report there’s no retort

What happened today and Saturday is exactly what the State of Florida predicted would happen.

I’m not a lawyer, but it’s plain to see what went on today.  For Jose Baez,  and Casey Anthony, the fallout will be very, very serious, if the Judge applies the ultimate sanction of excluding defense witnesses.

Watching a few minutes tonight of HLN, a few talking heads, for their dramatic pleasure, were calling into question Mr. Ashton’s supposed failure to take depositions.  Nothing could be further from the truth.

The talking, babbling heads are just plain wrong.  But, drama sells.

Mr. Ashton, although he’s emotional and gets riled when Baez does not play by the rules, is following the rules; he knows what the rules are and he knows that Jose Baez is very slimy and conveniently excludes expert witness reports, which is a direct violation of court orders.

If you or I ignored a court order, we’d be in jail!  Jose Baez, on the other hand, has violated court orders, not once, not twice, but THREE times.

When a lawyer willfully violates a court order that many times, I feel confident to say that Judge Perry will charge Baez with contempt of court when this trial is all over.

Contempt of Court is a criminal charge, requiring a trial.  Baez will need to be represented by counsel.  It is very serious.

Not only that, Jeff Ashton is proposing sanctions against Baez. Previously, when Ashton requested sanctions, the Court required that Baez pay fines.

There’s a big difference between sanctions and contempt.  Contempt is very serious.

If Judge Perry charges Baez with contempt, the penalty could be revocation of the law license, fines, suspension, remedial classes, or jail time.

What happened today was NOT Jeff Ashton’s fault

Granted Mr. Ashton and Mr. Baez have a lousy working relationship, and though there are two sides to every story, I can tell you that Mr. Ashton is one hell of a lawyer, and he plays by the rules.

Mr. Baez, on the other hand, ignores the rules.  Baez doesn’t like the rules of the criminal court, so he skirts them.

Baez said over and over today that Mr. Ashton had all the time in the world to take depositions, but he did not do it. Baez told the Court that Ashton has refused to take the deposition of Rodriquez and another expert witness regarding trace DNA.

Baez asked Judge Perry for sanctions against the State since they have not taken depositions, claiming the State “chose not to do so.”

If there’s no report there’s no retort

What Baez conveniently forgets are the rules!

There can not be a deposition of expert witnesses UNLESS THERE IS A REPORT FILED!  (Sorry for yelling!)

This is where Baez is making up his own rules. As a result of the defense failing to provide the State (back in 2009, 2010, and 2011), with discovery, the Court was forced to lay down rules requiring that the defense provide expert reports.

As Judge Perry reminded Baez today, there were previously two Court orders on this matter.  The first order was dated December 10, 2010.   See the court order:  Order Granting State’s Motion For Clarification To Compel Compliance With Order For additional Discovery

In this order, Judge Perry laid out, in plain English, what Baez must provide:

  1. The expert’s curriculum vitae or qualifications of the experts;
  2. The expert’s field of expertise or medical specialty;
  3. A statement of the specific subjects upon which the expert will testify and offer opinions;
  4. The substance of the facts to which the expert is expected to testify; and
  5. A summary of the expert’s opinions and the grounds for each opinion.

When the above Court order failed to move Mr. Baez into action, Jeff Ashton, since he is handling the expert witnesses, was livid and called for sanctions.

Judge Perry agreed with Mr. Ashton.  Fines were imposed, and Court orders were re-written very specifically with regards to the reports required.  These reports, ruled the court, must contain the following:

2. The defense shall provide written reports to the state from all expert witnesses which shall include the following information:  a complete statement of opinions the witnesses will express and the reasons for those opinions, and any data or other information considered by the witnesses in forming their opinions or conclusions.

The above order from Judge Perry, on Jan. 6, 2011, outlines what Baez must do to comply with the court, and contains the sanctions imposed.  This order is contained in the link below.  See the Court order: Order Granting States Motion for Sanctions – Motion to Compel

“This Court Doesn’t Make Threats” ~ Judge Belvin Perry

Judge Perry advised Baez that he will not threaten, he will apply the rules of law as they apply.  And, if anyone knows the rules of law, Judge Perry does.

It must be noted that because of Jose Baez, the State of Florida’s case is hampered and hurt.  Discovery is a reciprocal process and when one side does not follow the rules, it results in ambush of the other side.

Jeff Ashton cannot take depositions if he does not have reports.  So, here we are, in the middle of the trial, and Baez is lying, and disobeying court orders to gain advantage.

A trial is supposed to be a search for the truth.  Baez does not have to prove anything, that is the State’s burden. Yet, he makes bold assertions about George Anthony, drowning and other such nonsense, attempting to prove Casey Anthony did not act alone.  Of course, these assertions were made in opening statements, which does not have to be true – though most lawyers lay their case out as truthfully as they can in opening, it is NOT evidence.  (By the way, the only way these allegations can be raised are by Casey Anthony.)

In reality, the only thing the defense is proving is they are burdened with a guilty client who is represented by a lawyer who will make up the rules as he goes along.

The truth and Mr. Baez are strangers.

19
Jun

little caylee and her angels

This took my breath away.   I bet it will make you catch your breath, too.

Photo credit:"lil toad."

Laurli, a contributor to this blog, shared this picture with me yesterday. It’s titled “Caylee’s Team.”

The original is posted here:  http://www.flickr.com/photos/60857547@N03/5835813911/

This picture will do the writing for me tonight.

I think you’ll see why.

18
Jun

Yet again, Judge Perry says willful violation by Baez

I originally wrote the below post on Jan. 3, 2011 after Jose Baez was caught red-handed, trying to hide information, just as he did today with Dr. William Rodriguez. He’s a forensic anthropologist with the U.S. Department of Defense.

Today, the witness, Dr. Rodriquez, began to testify about the effect of duct tape on skeletal remains – a topic that was not included in the witnesses report, and which violates the rules of discovery in Florida criminal cases.

The court stopped abruptly as attorney Jeff Ashton advised Judge Perry of the violation.

Judge Perry asked Dr. Rodriquez was he told that he had to included ALL is opinions in his report?  “No,” said Dr. Rodriquez.

Judge Perry asked the witness, “When did you tell Mr. Baez about this opinion?”  “In February,” Dr. Rodriquez replied.

Baez was required to share this with the State of Florida – he did not, he kept it secret.

Therefore, with rising disdain an frustration, Judge Perry told Baez that his actions were willful and clearly a violation – just as he said in January of this year, when I wrote the below article.

It is just another reminder that Jose Baez thinks nothing of acting in “Bad Faith” in his practice as a lawyer.

Judge Perry could have held Baez in contempt of court today, but in the interest of seeing this case to its completion, he did not do it. But he could have, and some will argue he should have.

Judge Perry said, “This is not my first rodeo, Mr. Baez.”  Perry then told Baez he will withhold his ruling / revisit this at the conclusion of the case.

If I had to bet, I would say Judge Perry will do it – he will find Baez in contempt.  There is no way a contempt hearing could happen now, in the middle of the trial, of course, and the Judge is committed to see the trial through to its final bow.

But, I think he may do it.

Judge Perry previously warned, and warned Baez again and again, in pre-trial hearings, about the rules of discovery.  Baez kept breaking the rules until he was formally sanctioned and was required to pay costs to the State of Florida.

Back in January, Judge Perry, in no uncertain terms, told the lawyers,   if an expert should FAIL to disclose what he or she will testify to, that expert will be precluded from testifying at trial.

Today, Perry was not so strict and will allow the State to take the witnesses deposition today, allowing him to testify next week.

Judge Perry was not about to let Jose Baez’ actions hurt Casey Anthony’s opportunity to put on this witness.

Here is a link to an article I wrote about the fallout of the sanction and the violation.   https://andreadreamin.com/2011/01/20/oh-that-contemptuous-defense/

Here is the January 6th article that is related to what happened today:

Judge Perry: Willful violation by Baez

Every single day across the state of Florida, both criminal defense and prosecution attorneys abide by a very strict rule of reciprocal discovery.  The rules of discovery in criminal proceedings are very well known to most attorneys who practice in the state.  In short, the discovery rules require each side to inform the other in writing of any and all discovery that exists prior to trial.  This rule is to avoid what Judge Perry referred to as the common principle of “trial by ambush”.

Now, the Casey Anthony defense team won’t be the first to disobey this requirement; I would venture to say that in cities across the state of Florida, prosecutors have also inadvertently or willfully disobeyed this rule on occasion, as no case is perfect.  The troubling aspect of failure to abide by this rule is to run the risk of a verdict being overturned, which would require a retrial.

As you may recall, Judge Perry ordered the defense to produce expert witness discovery by a certain deadline date.  When the defense failed to comply and turn over sufficient detail to the prosecution, Judge Perry clarified the order for Jose Baez at a second hearing.  When Jose Baez failed to comply to the second court order, the court today concluded that the defense willfully violated its court order.

The prosecutor, Jeff Ashton, advised the court that the defense has a history of deliberately skirting deadlines, and not complying with discovery rules. To which Cheney Mason answered: The defense is doing its best against the State – with all its resources.  Mr. Mason opined that he and Mr. Baez are paying out of their own pockets for airfare and other incidentals.  Mr. Baez later sarcastically let the court know that his salary is about $3.00 per hour.

The fact of the matter is, this is the burden that ALL defense attorneys have to contend with!     If Mr. Mason and Mr. Baez cannot keep up with the costs and the demands this trial asks of them, it’s too bad and oh so sad, but that is life in the criminal justice system in Florida.

Jeffery Ashton was quite convincing and eloquent today.  He asked that the court sanction the defense to the extent that is personally hurtful.  He said, if the Judge does not do so, the defense will continue to obfuscate and delay, causing harm to Casey Anthony’s ability for adequate defense, and causing delay to the May trial date.  Mr. Ashton suggested that Jose Baez be charged $500 per day until such time as he produces the discovery of its expert witnesses.

Judge Perry wasted no time in issuing his ruling, and was clearly very prepared, having read the motions and the supporting documents from the State.

In short, the Judge found that the defense willfully violated a court order.  He also pointed out that it is highly unlikely that the defense team does not know what their experts’ opinions or findings are.

As to sanctions, the court decided that Jose Baez would pay the costs associated with the State having to file the motion for sanctions, including lawyer fees.  Jeff Ashton will determine an amount; submit it to the court who will announce the amount of the fine. Jose Baez will then have five days to appeal the amount he will have to pay the court.

Furthermore, the court ruled that the defense may not use or argue any expert opinion that is not included in written discovery or in a deposition at trial.  This means, if the defense chooses to “hide” a fact or an opinion from the prosecution, and then tries to bring the opinion before the jury at trial, it will be disallowed.

That alone is a very serious sanction for Jose Baez as his strategy is to conceal and hide information in the hopes of knocking the State off their game with the element of surprise. As you know, the rules of criminal procedure for the state of Florida do not allow for trial by surprise or ambush.

Mr. Baez had better resort to trying his case on its merit, of which we know there is little, and steer clear of trickery or contempt charges will be the next tool used by Judge Perry.

Judge Perry ordered the defense to submit its expert witness discovery within seven days.  Jose Baez asked for 30 days, the Judge said no, but allowed Jose Baez to submit by Wednesday an estimation of how long it will take to fulfill the discovery request.  The Judge appeared willing to concede a day or so, which was generous of him.

As for the additional motions – all 22 of them.  Most will not be heard until the State can provide an argument in answer to each motion.  The Judge is allowing the state 15 days to file their responses to the motions.

17
Jun

wee wee wee, all the way home

This little piggy went to market

This little piggy stayed home

This little piggy had roast beef

This little piggy had none

This little piggy cried, “wee, wee, wee”

All the way home!

 

As the saying goes, you can put lipstick on a pig, but it’s still a pig.  Same goes with a false witnesses in a court of law. When an Expert witness only wants to please the side they are on, rather than being scientifically ethical, it is just plain wrong. A good witness will tell his own truth, not the truth that one side wants to hear.

In the case of the State of Florida vs. Casey Anthony, one defense witness took up the entire day.  Dr. Timothy Huntington, a forensic entomologist and Adjunct professor at the University of Nebraska.  (An Adjunct professor, by the way, is not a full-time employee of a university.  Adjuncts are hired to fill in and cover courses term by term.)

Mr. Jose Baez must have thought that he bought a pretty good witness before Assistant State Attorney Jeff Ashton applied his incredible expertise at cross examination!

Oh, the pigs were oinking and crying when Mr. Ashton was finished today!

This expert, hired on December 11, 2008, by Linda Kenney Baden, just finished his Ph.D. in 2008, and desperately wanted to do well for the defense.

Dr. Huntington, in order to research the decomposition process in the trunk of a car, experimented with a pig, wrapped in a blanket, in the place of a small body. He photographed and cataloged the bug species that came to feast on the poor pig.

When Mr. Ashton asked if this pig in a blanket experiment (yes, he said “pig in a blanket” to everyone’s delight!) was done as a result of being hired by the defense, Dr. Huntington was clearly being disingenuous when he said, “No” he’d always wanted to do this kind of experiment. Right!  No one believed it. Not for a moment….

By the way, this witness is a very young, he has never testified in court before, and he may never do so again.  Well, maybe for a defense team needing a chameleon.

Thank you Dr. Huntington.   Love from, Jeff Ashton

Despite his tendency to be disingenuous, this witness was wonderful for the State and Ashton hog-tied him to quite a few admissions!

  • The witness said the body was in one place (the car) and was deposited in June and did not move from there.  This is incredibly important to the State’s case!  How could Kronk have known about where the body was in June, when Cindy Anthony only made the fateful 911 call on July 15th?  There was not even a reward for Caylee until later.
  • When the witness examined the car in July 2010, it still stunk, despite there not being any garbage in the trunk (oh yes, Baez would still like the jury to think the smell is the garbage).
  • This witness said, “Oh well, I know there was garbage in that trunk, so I couldn’t say it was decomposition.”  Ashton countered by saying, “When has garbage kept an odor after two years?”  Then Ashton paused and gave this witness a glare that clearly said he was mortified that the witness continued to dissemble and speak from both corners of his mouth.
  • Ashton asked the witness, “Why didn’t you place the pig in a blanket, then in two garbage bags, then in a laundry bag?”
  • This witness stuck to his theory that bugs were likely attracted to “chew” in the empty chewing tobacco can.  Huh?
  • Ashton got the witness to agree there was NO food in the garbage bag.  The witness said, oh no, I’d seen salami still in the package in that garbage. Ashton got the garbage out of evidence, fished out the salami package, and showed the witness what he thought was salami was crumbled paper.

There were other points scored by the State, including the fact that the high levels of chloroform in the trunk would contribute to killing or warding off the bugs.

Let’s hope the remainder of the defense experts will be more forthcoming at the outset.  Listening for a full day to the flat testimony today, may have had made the jurors go buggy!

I was so disgusted at the whole charade today – with the focus on pigs in a blanket and not a dear child, I could have snorted like a pig!

 

16
Jun

well, it was a non-evidence kind of day

My parents always told me that it is fruitless to try to prove a negative since it generally returns results that are negative.

Mr. Jose Baez, apparently, was never schooled in this idea.

The purpose of highlighting non evidence?  Mr. Baez is banking on a single juror to be stupid enough to think such a lack of evidence is evidence of something.  What non evidence is evidence of, is anyone’s guess.

Oh, but Mr. Baez will blow smoke in the air and try and try and try some more to create “non evidence “smokescreens for the jury.

We know this after today’s monotonous, confounding and completely wasteful day of testimony, there was no attempt to lay the ground work regarding their theory of drowning.  And, we now know that Mr. Baez agrees that a body decomposed in the trunk of the car since he was asking his own witnesses about such evidence!

Therefore, today was about as wasteful for the defense as the trash that Mr. Beaz spent so much time talking about.

Why?

Because the result of today’s testimony advised the jury that not a single drop of blood was discovered by FBI, DNA Expert Heather Seubert, when she examined articles from the crime scene and from the trunk of the car driven by Casey Anthony.

We know that DNA cannot survive over a period of six months in wet, hot, and volatile environments.  Furthermore, it has been proved, both today, and in the State’s case, that DNA does not survive during the decomposition process.  Nor does blood, apparently.

And yet, Mr. Jose Baez asked and asked and asked and asked this witness, did you find blood to test?   No.  No. No. No. Mr. Baez, that answer will be, grrrrr, NO!

And, why does the defense focus on blood, or the lack thereof, if the defense contends Caylee drowned?

It is possible that the defense is trying to show that the amount of non-evidence exceeds the actual evidence?

Does the lack of evidence – or rather, of NOT finding evidence where we would not expect to find evidence anyway, prove anything?  Does this prove Caylee Marie Anthony was not drugged and suffocated?

No. Not in the least.

When Ms. Welch, who also testified in the State’s case and called today by the defense, was asked again and again and again and again and AGAIN, if items pictured as “trash” were ever sent to the FBI to be tested for anything.   The witness and the jury saw pictures of beer bottles, soda bottles, and a plethora of miscellaneous items one would find in a garbage dump.  And over and over, Mr. Baez asked – were these items tested for anything?  “Not that I recall,” said Ms. Welch, repeatedly.

When it was Ms. Burdick’s turn to cross examine Ms. Welch, she asked one simple, singular question that brought everything home and into focus for the jury:

Ms. Burdick: Ms. Welch, is it fair to call the area where Caylee Marie Anthony’s remains were found, as a trash dump?

Ms. Welch: Yes, I would characterize it that way.

And so, today of all days – exactly three years from the very date that  Caylee Marie Anthony was murdered – Ms. Burdick pointed out that Caylee was treated as trash.

This small moment in time brought home the injustice that Caylee suffered.

May the Heavens continue to bless the little angel, Caylee Marie.

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