|Sunday, 11 January 2009 11:01|
Caylee Marie Anthony
Born: August 9, 2005, Orlando, Florida
Died: June, 2008, Orlando Florida.
Cause of death: Murder, cause not yet specified.
Notable because: A story that has gripped America where a Mother has googled keywords like 'neck breaking', before killing her own baby and then gone out partying.
Caylee Marie Anthony attracted international attention regarding the circumstances of her disappearance in June 2008 and subsequently determined death. Her mother, Casey Anthony, was indicted on October 14, 2008, for the first-degree murder of Caylee. Police found Casey Anthony's account of Caylee's disappearance suspicious after learning that Casey had not reported her daughter missing for more than a month. The last time Casey Anthony claimed to have seen Caylee was on June 9, 2008, but the child's disappearance was not reported to police until July 15, 2008. On December 11, 2008, skeletal remains of what appeared to be a young child were found by a meter reader. The Orange County Medical Examiner confirmed on December 19, 2008, that the human remains found close to the home of the family were those of Caylee Anthony.
Caylee Anthony was first reported missing to authorities on July 15, 2008. Caylee's grandmother, Cindy Anthony, reportedly called 9-1-1 when her daughter Casey Anthony, the mother of Caylee, would not produce the grandchild. Cindy Anthony had not seen her granddaughter for weeks and became alarmed when she smelled the odor of a "dead body" in the trunk of Casey Anthony's car. Cindy Anthony later revised her account, stating that the smell was from old pizza.
When police questioned Casey Anthony about the whereabouts of her daughter, she stated the child was with a babysitter. The purported babysitter, Zenaida "Zani" Fernandez-Gonzalez, was said to have been caring for the child for over two years. When a local woman named Zenaida Gonzalez (not Fernandez-Gonzalez) was found and questioned by police on July 17, 2008, Gonzalez denied knowing either Casey or Caylee Anthony. When police asked the grandmother Cindy about the babysitter, Cindy said that she had no reason to doubt the account of Fernandez-Gonzalez caring for Caylee. However, in the nearly three years that Caylee was alive and living at Cindy Anthony's house, Cindy had never once met the alleged babysitter.
From the start of the investigation, police had trouble determining the facts of the case. For instance, initially Caylee's grandparents, Cindy and George Anthony, told police that the last time they saw their granddaughter was on June 9, 2008, but authorities found a video tape, taken June 15, 2008, that shows Caylee reading a book. When the grandparents were questioned about the time discrepancy, Cindy Anthony said that she had been confused about the dates and recalled taking Caylee to see Caylee's great-grandfather on Fathers Day, June 15, 2008. Cindy Anthony told police that her husband probably went along with the dates because he took his wife's word on those mistaken details.
When police began to investigate Casey Anthony, they found discrepancies in what she had told law enforcement in her signed statement. Much of the information Casey gave, starting with the babysitter account, appeared to be false. For example, Casey told police that she worked at Universal Studios; when police escorted her to the studio facility, she led them to an office but then admitted that she no longer worked there. Casey also claimed she had been investigating Caylee's disappearance on her own which is why she did not contact police earlier. However, friends and family denied being asked by Casey about Caylee. Photos of Casey attending parties while Caylee was missing were published by media outlets. On the December 10, 2008 episode of Larry King Live, Cindy Anthony said the photos in question were "staged" photos for which Casey was remunerated, apparently for the promotion of a nightclub.
During the investigation, police officers discovered hair samples and a stain in the trunk of Casey Anthony's car. Though there were claims that the stain was from the victim's blood, at the time this fact had not been publicly confirmed. Instead, a lead investigator on the case said the hair was the major deciding factor leading authorities to believe that Caylee had indeed been in the trunk of Casey Anthony's car. Together with these findings, authorities "air tested" the area of the car trunk to determine if a decomposing body had been stored there. The results of the air test were sent to the University of Tennessee Anthropological Research Facility for forensic examination. These results were consistent with the possibility that a body had been in the trunk.
Traces of Chloroform were found in Casey Anthony's car trunk and evidence was found that someone had searched the internet on the use of the chemical and how to make it on Casey Anthony's computer. No dates of the search were given and they did not establish if the searches were done by Casey.
Cindy Anthony was interviewed on September 2, 2008, on the NBC morning show Today by the show's co-host, Matt Lauer. During the interview, Cindy Anthony expressed her hope that Caylee was with a friend or acquaintance of Casey Anthony. She went on to say, "I believe that Caylee is still alive, because I'm still getting phone calls of people who have seen Caylee and they're frustrated because the authorities aren't investigating."
On October 21, 2008 the charges of child neglect were dropped against Casey Anthony. In a statement that morning, the State Attorney's Office explained: "The neglect charges were premised on the theory that her child, Caylee Marie, was still alive. As the investigation progressed and it became clear that the evidence proved that the child was deceased, the State sought an indictment on the legally appropriate charges."
On Friday, October 24, 2008, a forensic report from Oak Ridge National Laboratory in Tennessee confirmed results from a DNA test showing "evidence consistent with decomposition" based on five "key" compounds out of over 400 possible found in the trunk of Casey Anthony's car. DNA samples cannot confirm whether the source is alive or dead. The only DNA testing by the FBI was limited to 752 base pairs out of 16,569 base pairs (less than 5% of the mitochondrial genome sequence). Whether or not the decomposition is human is still unknown but indicated as a possibility. The process has not been affirmed by a Daubert Test in the courts.
On November 26, 2008, officials released 700 pages of documents related to the Anthony investigation, which included evidence of Google searches of the terms "neck breaking," "how to make chloroform," and "death" on Casey Anthony's home computer. No dates were given as to when the searches were done.
In July, KioMarie Cruz, Casey Anthony's childhood friend, told local police to investigate the wooded area near Hidden Oaks Elementary School. On August 11, 12, and 13 of 2008, tips were called in to police by a meter reader, subsequently identified as Orange County utility worker, Roy Kronk, about a suspicious bag near the same wooded area on Suburban Drive, less than a half-mile from the Anthony residence on Hopespring Drive.
On December 11, skeletal remains of what appeared to be a young child were found by the same meter reader. It was reported that the skull had remnants of duct tape on it, and at least a portion of what was found was inside of a bag. On December 12, the remains were tentatively identified as Caylee based on strands of hair found with the remains as well the age and measurements being a match for Caylee. On December 15, WFTV reported that more bones were found in the wooded area near where the skull was discovered.
On December 19, 2008, medical examiner Dr. Jan Garavaglia confirmed that the remains found were that of Caylee Anthony, the death being ruled a homicide and that she was killed by undetermined means. No details of the DNA identification testing were given, such as the number of loci matched or the sources used in the match. Prosecutors indicated they could seek the death penalty after the finding of Caylee Anthony's body.
The case has attracted media attention and has regularly been the main topic of talk shows hosted by Greta Van Susteren, Nancy Grace, Geraldo Rivera, and others, and it has been featured on America's Most Wanted, NBC's Dateline, and ABC's 20/20. The mysterious, yet still unexplained death of Caylee has been distinguished by a frustrating unexplained lack of critical information from Casey Anthony, who was initially charged with child neglect and making false statements to investigators before later being charged with murder. However, while the Anthony grandparents relentlessly called upon the public to search for Caylee in places as far as Texas, Mexico, and Puerto Rico, they also insisted that Casey had been maintaining her silence in order to protect Caylee, and that searches for a dead body were unjustified.
Casey Anthony's parents, Cindy and George, appeared on the Today show on October 22, 2008. They maintained their belief that Caylee was alive and would be found. Larry Garrison, President of SilverCreek Entertainment, was their spokesman until he resigned in November 2008, citing that he was leaving due to "the Anthony family's erratic behavior." Cindy Anthony was reported to be writing a book with her daughter Casey.
More than 600 pages of evidence released by the Orange County Sheriff's Department, including hundreds of instant messages between Casey and then-boyfriend Tony Rusciano, have been the subject of increased scrutiny by the media for clues and possible motives in the homicide.
Casey Marie Anthony (born March 19, 1986, in Warren, Ohio), Caylee's mother, has been charged with the murder of her daughter.
She was first arrested on July 16, 2008 for giving false statements, neglect of a child, and obstruction of a criminal investigation with a request that she be held on a no bond status until Caylee Anthony was located. The arresting detective admitted at a bond hearing that he did not immediately initiate an alert on the missing Caylee.
On August 21, 2008, Casey Anthony was released after one month of incarceration. She was released from the Orange County jail after her $500,200 bond was posted by California bounty hunter Leonard Padilla and his nephew Tony Padilla, a bail bondsman.
She was arrested again on August 29, 2008, on charges of forgery, fraudulent use of personal information, and petty theft for forging $700 worth of checks and using her friend's credit cards without permission. Leonard Padilla subsequently rescinded the $500,200 in bail due to a lack of cooperation from Casey Anthony.
On September 5, 2008, Casey Anthony was released again on bail after being fitted with an electronic tracking device. Her $500,000 bond was posted anonymously, and later revealed that her parents, Cindy and George Anthony, signed a promissory note for the bond.
Casey Anthony was arrested a third time on September 15, 2008, on new charges of theft, and was released shortly afterward.On October 14, 2008 Casey Anthony was indicted by a grand jury on charges of first-degree murder and was arrested for the fourth time. She entered a plea of not-guilty to the charges that she killed Caylee on October 17.
|Last Updated on Sunday, 11 January 2009 11:59|