Is Casey Anthony’s Guilt Really As Obvious As We Think?
By now, we’re sure that everyone has heard of Casey Anthony and is aware of the trial that has engulfed her and her entire family. Just in case you haven’t, Casey Anthony is the young mother who is accused of killing her three-year-old daughter, Caylee, three years ago. Casey worked as a manager of a group of “shot girls” in a Florida club, and infamously waited over 30 days to report her daughter missing. In fact, she reported to her mother that Caylee was away with Zenaida Gonzales (nicknamed Zanny the Nanny), a name she apparently made up. In the midst of the media firestorm that ensued, Caylee’s remains were found and everyone suspected the child’s mother, who seemed so unaffected and unconcerned with her daughter’s well being. It turns out her face had been covered in duct tape.
In the court of public opinion (where she was tried most prominently by Nancy Grace and Jane Velez-Mitchell), Casey Anthony has been portrayed as a young party girl who was more caught up in living the life of a nightclub socialite to be concerned with raising a child. It was brought out that little Caylee spent several nights in the homes of men Casey would sleep with and she was manipulative with her parents concerning the case. Nationwide, people scoffed at the pure evil that must exist within this woman, and it seemed like an open-and-shut case.
However, Casey Anthony’s trial began this week. Of course, like any trial, it began with opening statements. The prosecution laid out its case methodically and masterfully, talking about the internet searches for “chloroform,” among many other damning searches and the 30-day delay in reporting the child missing, her continued partying even though she knew her daughter was missing or dead, and the complete fabrication of Zanny the Nanny.
The defense took the floor for opening statements and dropped a number of bombshells, the likes of which have made this case, and potential plot twists and turns, better than anything you’ve ever seen on Law and Order: SVU. Defense attorney Jose Baez stepped up and stated Casey Anthony was sexually abused by her father since the age of eight and by her brother years later. He stated that because of this, she was able to put terrible experiences out of her mind—doing so had become common practice. For this reason, Baez notes, it was easy for Casey to hide the death of her daughter. He also said she had been forced to hide her pregnancy by her parents, who were ashamed Casey conceived without being married. Finally, Baez stated Caylee accidentally drowned in the family pool and that the only bad decision Casey made, with the help of her father George Anthony, was attempting to cover it up.
The defense’s theory of the case has cast Casey in a whole new light as a more sympathetic character. It is not yet known whether these things are true or can be proven—the evidence did not seem to support the drowning theory and there is still the matter of the chloroform and duct tape—but the media attention, youth of the victim and potential to destroy a family seem to put this very interesting case in the running for the Trial of the Century.
If convicted, Anthony will likely face the death penalty.