Wednesday, March 23, 2011


Today is the 1st day of 3 this week whereby Casey Anthony gets to sit in a courtroom and hear more evidence that will be used against her by the State of Florida's prosecution.

Here's an excerpt from

Casey Anthony was back in court Wednesday, less than seven weeks from the scheduled start of her murder trial. During three days of hearings, defense attorneys will try to get scientific evidence thrown out, claiming it's not reliable technology.

Lawyers spent all day arguing over scientific evidence, including a hair that was found in the trunk of Casey's car and the cadaver dogs that searched for Caylee's body.
Casey Anthony walked into the court room around 9:00am Wednesday wearing a low-cut pink blouse and dark slacks, with her haired pulled back into a bun (images | video).
The first motion to be heard involved the defense request to have post-mortem banding evidence be excluded as unreliable (read it). Karen Korsberg Lowe, an FBI expert in forensics, was the first to testify on behalf of the prosecution, who believes the evidence should be admissible.
The defense was having a tough day in court. The defense started off trying to keep out its own confidential expert's research, which actually validates the hair evidence the defense wants thrown out as "junk science".
WFTV was the first to report the dark, parallel banding that can indicate hair came from a dead body early in the case. That banding was on one of Caylee's hairs found in Casey's trunk.
The defense tried to challenge the FBI investigators who found the banding. Defense attorney Dorothy Sims asked Lowe whether a hair from a live person could develop dark spots after exposure to water, soil or enzymes.
Lowe believes a hair in Casey's trunk came from a deceased body with DNA similarities to hair from Caylee's hairbrush.
"The characteristics present in this hair were consistent with post-mortem root banding, which I recorded as apparent decomposition," Lowe stated.
Sims' repeated improper questioning sparked a lecture from Chief Judge Belvin Perry.
"How many times do I have to tell you?" Perry asked Sims.
Prosecutor Jeff Ashton was told to stop interrupting her to object, but a stranger to the case caused the biggest outburst.
"The Lord has shown himself in Japan with the destruction!" said an unknown person in the courtroom.
"Out! Remove that person from the courtroom!" Perry said.
Prosecutor Linda Drane-Burdick's objection to a defense expert's testimony, that a cadaver dog handler could inadvertently cause the dog to alert on an area being searched for a body, brought a comment from defense attorney Jose Baez.
"I can't help it if Ms. Drane-Burdick didn't do her homework.
"He can insult me all day long, all he wants," Drane-Burdick replied.
About 30 minutes later, Baez wasn't so snarky when the prosecutor reduced the defense expert to merely an observer and a reader.
"You're not an expert in that area, but you've read a few articles," Drane-Burdick asked Dr. Scott Grieve.
"Yes," Grieve answered.
WFTV legal analyst Bill Sheaffer said from what he's heard in court Wednesday, the defense will lose that fight. The evidence that the jury will hear once Casey's murder trial starts in May is mounting.
The jury will hear all the lies Casey told to investigators and to her family right after Caylee was reported missing.
Sheaffer said he's never seen cadaver dog evidence thrown out, and defense arguments to keep out the hair evidence fell short.
"This witness will not let the lawyer confuse her or confuse the issues," Sheaffer said. Sheaffer said if the jury does hear all of the evidence against Casey, the defense will have to create not just doubt, but reasonable doubt in the minds of the jurors.
"The only person that could refute a lot of this circumstantial evidence is Casey Anthony herself but she comes with too much baggage," he said.
Casey is charged with first-degree murder in the death of her daughter, Caylee Anthony. Casey has pleaded not guilty and says a babysitter kidnapped Caylee.
The trial is set to start May 9.
Getting new science into trials is not new ground for lead prosecutor Jeff Ashton.
In 1987, he was the first prosecutor in the country to get a conviction on DNA evidence. Jimmy Lee Andrews was convicted of burglary and rape.

The scientific evidence testimony from the FBI centered around one piece of hair that was found in Casey's car trunk.  This hair, the prosecution & FBI expert said had a dark band at the root which signified that it came from a dead body. After they ran DNA tests on it, it came back as being either from Casey, her mom Cindy or the victim Caylee.  Since Caylee is the only one who is dead, they are saying that this hair belonged to her.  The defense attorney tried to argue with the FBI expert, saying that it was possible that this hair band theory could simply be a dark band from some other means, such as being submerged in water for a long period of time, which is how Caylee's body was probably placed for several months.  That didn't go over so well with the judge and prosecutor cuz this day was supposed to argue the scientific validity of hair bands = dead body.  The defense attorney got a bit chewed up by the judge for her persistence in trying to get the FBI to say otherwise.

The K9/Cadaver dog testimony revolved around the July 17th - 18th when K9/cadaver dogs were brought in to smell around Casey's car and her parents' backyard.  As the prosecution's expert witnesses (FBI & detectives) testified today, the dog(s) "hit" on a few key areas.  They said that this type of alerting was due to the probability of a decomposing body having been there.  The "hits" included  several areas around Casey's little white car and her parents' backyard.  Casey's defense brought in expert witnesses of their own, one of which tried to explain that K9/cadaver dogs are just "tools" in an investigation, and the idea of them "hitting" or "alerting" of decomposing bodies is not what should be concluded by the dogs' alerts.  Their stance was that the dogs could be alerting to something other than a decomposing body.  Maybe some rotten pizza or dead squirrel perhaps? LOL.

As I watched the defense's attorneys cross-examining prosecution witnesses, and getting their own witnesses to say things in Casey's defense, I started to fall asleep.  It seemed that these testimonies just went on and on.  I started getting bored since I have a technical/to-the-point state of mind, and just wanted them all to just get to the point of the matter.   Doesn't look like that's what's gonna happen in this trial.  There's gonna be a lot of jockeying for position by the defense, so to try to keep Casey out of prison and away from the death penalty.

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