Casey Anthony Trial: Day 31

 

Casey Anthony charged with murdering her daughter speaks in court a little as her Defense pushes for a mistrial.

FOX News Radio’s Eben Brown reports from Orlando:

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There was some very emotional testimony Wednesday from George Anthony.  Casey’s Father broke down in tears when describing how he felt when he learned his granddaughter Caylee’s remains were found in the woods near his house.

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Afterwards, there was a brief break in testimony so George could compose himself.

At the end of the day, word that the trial could soon be over.

FOX News Radio’s Eben Brown has details…

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FOX Producer Kathleen Reuschle was in the courtroom all day and has this recap of Day 31’s proceedings:

Defense attorney Jose Baez faced a barrage of objections today and witnesses who fell short of helping advance his theories to prove Casey’s innocence. He hoped to show jurors a father who was capable of molesting and framing his daughter in his granddaughter’s accidental death. Instead, he got a sobbing, one-time suicidal father who was so desperate for information he purchased a gun to threaten individuals he thought may know something about the case. He hoped to show jurors a money-hungry meter reader who tampered with and moved Caylee’s remains, and instead got an overwhelmed man who made mistakes on his police statements, kept secrets,  tried to impress his son, and only pivoted the skull with his meter reader stick a little. He hoped to get convincing expert testimony about how grief-coping mechanisms could explain Casey’s bizarre behavior and instead got an admission that the same behavior could be a result of guilt and shame.

Baez tried to show George Anthony may have been purposely implicating Casey by pulling police aside and telling them “negative things” about his daughter – telling them “something happened to Caylee and Casey had something to do with it” – to which George replied,  “definitely something happened to Caylee, she’s no longer with us, and Casey is the last person I saw her with.” George admitted he told police 3 years ago Casey’s car smelled like human decomposition and said he stll believes that to this day. When Baez insinuated it was odd George never called 911 when he smelled the odor, and went to work instead, George replied he “wasn’t ashamed” of what he did.

Next were a series of denials and admissions.  George admitted he never asked the 2 private investigators who were trapsing around in the woods and filming in the spot Caylee’s remains were later discovered,  what they had been doing there.

He denied ever harming his daughter when she was little. But, he admitted when prosecutors took his deposition, he defensively said police were to blame for putting the duct tape that was linked to Caylee’s body on his gas can.

When Caylee’s remains were discovered and police executed a search warrant at the Anthony home, George denied being uncooperative even though they were forced to ask him to step outside. He denied feeling pressure that “walls were closing in” on him, but explained that it was a tumultuous time in his life and he was very upset. He denied purchasing a gun for the express reason of violating Casey’s house arrest rules so she would be sent back to jail – and instead explained he bought it thinking it would help him in his search for answers.

Baez then called meter reader Roy Kronk’s son to the stand – to directly refute his father’s testimony from yesterday about a phone call Kronk said “never happened.” Brandon Sparks revealed his father DID call him in November 2008 to tell him he knew where Caylee’s remains were. Sparks said he didn’t think much of it, because his father was always saying “far-fetched” things – and it wasn’t until December 11, 2008 when Caylee’s body was indeed discovered that he recalled their conversation. He said his father told him he was going to be rich and famous.

Baez then called Detective Yuri Melich and Deputy Edward Turso to the stand who both responded to the crime scene on Suburban Drive on December 11th and took statements from Mr. Kronk. They said Kronk oddly never told them he made 4 calls into a tipline in August about possibly seeing the skull in the woods.

Finally grief expert Dr. Sally Karioth took the stand and was asked to respond to a hypothetical case (Casey’s). She stated it is very common for young people to be “reluctant grievers” and for them to engage in risky behavior. She said denial is a “great tool.”  When asked about the peculiar circumstances in this case, she stated, “when we deal with families where there is a conspiracy of silence, where the rules are don’t talk, don’t feel, don’t share, in those situations its very likely that the response to a traumatic episode is to leave other people…so the story of what may have happened can be changed a little bit.”

In cross-examination prosecutor Jeffrey Ashton added to the hypothetical situation (Casey’s) and asks the expert what she makes of a long list of lies added to the scenario – and whether denial means lying. Karioth responded, “I would agree that this a young woman in crisis who is unable to figure out how to make things better, I may call that grief because it makes people do very unusual things, I would think you need to get her some help.” The expert explained the behavior as “magical thinking” – “if I can keep all these balls in the air maybe it won’t be true what happened.”

Jurors paid close attention to and locked their eyes on George Anthony today. He was seen trying to make eye contact with his daughter Casey at the defense table who refused to look up. Casey was seen shaking her head “no” when she believed her father was being untruthful on the stand. She also became emotional when the grief expert took the stand and cried during the woman’s analysis regarding a family with a “conspiracy of silence.”

Defense announced they will rest tomorrow – and Judge said he will let the jury decide if they want to have closing statements continue thru Sunday.




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