The verdict has now been read by the clerk of the Circuit Court of Orange County Orlando, Florida in the trial that shocked the nation. Casey Anthony, “Tot Mom” as Nancy Grace has been calling her for three years, is found guilty of no more than running the cops around Disney World and a few other rabbit trails. After deliberating for eleven hours, including taking time for cokes and Chick-fil-A’s, the jury of five men and seven women got on their Orange County Bus and hightailed it back to the West Coast of Florida. They left without facing the music of a press conference to explain their bizarre verdict of acquittal, where they would have to detail to the public how a beautiful, brown eyed, two year old baby girl, put duct tape over her face after inhaling chloroform, crawled into a Winnie the Pooh blanket and black trash bags, and then jumped into a canvas bag by herself, and then topped it off by reaching back out and putting a little heart that said, “I love you” over the tape.
And then just for additional intrigue the jury might have had to tell the press to explain how a bag of something laid in the trunk of Casey’s car for so long that it smelled to everyone that had ever smelled a decomposed body, yes you guessed it, a decomposed body, including Casey’s father who was a retired cop, investigating police, and a trained cadaver dog that went immediately to the side of the car where that smell was coming from. And it didn’t smell like rotten potatoes as the defense claimed; it smelled like a decomposed body. And then when the car was taken to the junk yard, the testimony was that the odor was detected there. That had nothing to do with voodoo science, referring to odor caught and preserved in a can.
Part of the problem, as my admittedly amateur detective wife admits is, Americans are watching too much CSI, Law and Order, and NCSI, and whatever else is on TV these days. They have all become one hour expert crime solvers, with time outs for commercials. They have also become desensitized to sin. How many on that jury have tattoos, either lived the party life or have watched TV and movies of the Casey life style?
I must confess my shock when I heard Greta Van Susteren question alternate juror # 14 on her show Greta Wire Tuesday night, and he said that jurors thought the whole thing was an accidental death, and the family put the duct tape around little Caylee’s head and put her in the bag just like they had buried their animals in their back yard. I thought, “Have mercy”, then why didn’t they treat little Caylee as well as their animals, instead of taking her a few blocks from their home and throwing her into a swamp? But then if this is true, it would mean that the father, mother and Casey’s brother Lee would have put the child in the trunk of the car and left the little thing to decompose until it stank.
And these are the kind of people that we are trusting to serve on jury’s and they are telling us that the jury system worked? Where have we come to in our land when two year old girls have no more consideration than people’s dogs and cats. In fact, if what juror #14 said is true, the Anthony’s animals received a more humane burial than their daughter and granddaughter. I for one don’t believe it’s true. And if it is, then why wasn’t Casey found guilty of a lesser crime than murder -- the judge gave them a choice of Aggravated Child Abuse or Aggravated Manslaughter.
Part of the problem are the jury instructions. The “beyond a reasonable doubt,” standard is and should be the high bar that jurors should and must cross over to find some one guilty of first degree murder. But when you are talking about manslaughter or child abuse, are you telling me that when the jury was told up front that it was a circumstantial evidence case to begin with, that they couldn’t use their best judgment to determine guilt or innocence? It was proven that Casey Anthony was the last person that was with Caylee. If she didn’t put her in the bag and throw her in the swamp, who did?
If there has to be exact evidence such as eye witnesses, or forensic evidence such as finger prints, DNA evidence, or other such exact exotic methods that ooh and aah us, why is the state allowed to have circumstantial cases to begin with. Because “beyond a reasonable doubt”, means “reasonable” not “unreasonable.” And “reasonable doubt” doesn’t mean “no doubt.” Every normal person has doubts about truth every day, but it doesn’t make truth error. Doubt is healthy. It is the preponderance of the evidence. No one would ever get married if they had no doubt whatsoever that they shouldn’t marry. No one would make any decisions if they had to be 100% correct with no doubts whatsoever. Every person has to make decisions on the preponderance of the evidence.
The state agrees with this assumption; that’s why they gave the jury a choice. If it is unreasonable for the jury to believe that Casey Anthony was guilty of First degree murder, the state then said, if it was unreasonable to believe, circumstantially, with all of the evidence before them that Casey Anthony was not guilty of first degree murder, (which I must say I agree), then was she not at least “without reasonable doubt” guilty of at least Aggravated child abuse or if not that Aggravated Manslaughter? But it is not totally unreasonable to believe that she is not guilty, with the preponderance of evidence against her that she is guilty of nothing.
If she is guilty of nothing more than four counts of lying to the police, all misdemeanors, what did she lie about, missing Sunday school? She was on trial for killing her little two year old girl who they found in a swamp after many months. Little Caylee was missing for thirty-one days while mom Casey told one lie after another. She even said her nannie kidnapped her. She had even no concern for her. If she had done no wrong, what was she covering up?
The jury had a responsibility to Caylee, her grand parents, her uncle Lee, her relatives and society to make a reasonable judgment that a wrong had been committed and a lie was being told to cover up the wrong, and the person who committed the wrong was telling the lie to cover it up. Now how much forensic evidence do you need to figure that out?
For six thousand years crimes have been solved without so called forensic evidence. People used their best judgment and common sense. But now that the world has been taken over by experts, we don’t need common folks any longer. Why don’t we just do away with trials and turn everything over to the experts?
In the mean time, little Caylee’s blood, as righteous Abel, still cries out from the ground. And it cries even louder since that jury’s finding of not guilty in the Orange County Court room Tuesday afternoon. Yes, Casey will walk for the crime of murder, but she won’t walk forever; she won’t walk from her conscience that will haunt her for the rest of her life, she won’t walk from the cries of the blood of Caylee that will scream in her ears when the music from the blaring rock band has stopped for the night, and she won’t walk from the stares and hisses from the people who will look at her wherever she goes for the rest of her life And unless she repents and finds forgiveness at the foot of the cross, where the Lord Jesus Christ died for sinners like us all, she won’t walk where she will stand one day, where all men must stand, at the Judgment Bar of God and meet Caylee face to face and hear her say – Mommy Why? I thought you loved me?