Saturday, May 28, 2011


First up on the witness stand for the Casey Anthony trial was Casey's former boyfriend, Anthony (Tony) Lazzaro.

Tony testified about events surrounding July 16th, the day he first met Cindy Anthony, Casey's mother, when she arrived at his apartment looking for Casey.  He said that he was playing video games with a friend/roommate of his when Amy Huizenga, Casey's friend, knocked on the door and he yelled out for the knocker to enter.  Casey was sitting near him when the door opened and he saw Amy standing at his door.  Casey left the apartment with Amy.  Shortly thereafter Casey's mother appeared at the door. She was with Casey and told her to get her things and that they were leaving.  Tony testified that Casey yelled at her mother that she would leave but she planned on returning.  He heard Cindy tell Casey no, she wasn't going to return.  Stunned and confused, Tony continued to sit watching, and thought to himself, "oh oh, someone's in trouble".  Tony testified that shortly thereafter an Orlando police officer came to his apartment and asked for Casey's cell phone.  Afterwards, he received a call from Lee Anthony, Casey's brother, asking if it was ok that he come to Tony's apartment to gather some of Casey's things.  Tony told Lee that he was welcome to come and asked what was going on.  That was when he first heard that Caylee was missing.  A few hours later, another police officer arrived, and looked around his apartment for about thirty minutes and left.  Between 9pm and 12 midnight, Lee arrived and took with him a duffle bag that contained Casey's clothes.

Moving on, prosecutors began questioning Tony about text messages he exchanged with Casey after she left his apartment with her mother.  Prosecutors went line by line with Tony, as he read the text messages that were exchanged between himself and Casey.  He testified that he became infuriated when he first heard that Caylee had been kidnapped by her nanny.  He asked her, via text, why she did tell him of all people that Caylee was taken by the babysitter, that she was missing. He said that he was her boyfriend, and of all people, she should have told him. She responded that she felt guilty about trusting a psycho babysitter.  Believing her, Tony continued texting her that he was available to help.

As the texting continued there was one point when Casey texted Tony that if Caylee was not found "Guess who'll be spending eternity in jail", referring to her.

Wanting more information, Tony phoned Casey. His first question to her was "Where's Caylee"?.  When prosecutors asked how he was feeling at the time he called Casey, he said that he was angry, felt lied to, betrayed.  As Tony described his feelings during that time, his demeanor on the witness stand shifted, reflecting how he really felt totally betrayed by Casey.  He appeared upset as he continued answering questions.

He kept asking Casey questions about what exactly happened to Caylee and why didn't she tell him anything, but she continued avoiding answering his questions.  After realizing that he was getting nowhere, he testified that he ultimately got frustrated and told her that he had to go to class and hung up the phone.


Jose Baez came back on the stand, and said to Tony, "These conversations were bizarre?". Tony's answer was "Yes sir".  He had Tony testify that during these text messages, Casey was giving the appearance that she believed that Caylee was still alive, and she cared about her parents.  Baez continued saying to Tony, in a question, that it was hard to tell what was real and what wasn't. "Yes sir", was Tony's answer.  Baez then questioned Tony about Tony's apartment dumpster, and its location.


As Cindy approached the witness stand, she asked for a bottle of water.  When she introduced herself, her voice cracked and was visibly upset.  The prosecuting attorney, Linda Drane-Burdick was in charge of questioning Cindy.  When cameras focused on Casey, she appeared sad as she looked at her mother.  Cindy testified about when they first moved from Ohio to their current home on Hopespring Drive in Florida.  Her son Lee was seven, and Casey was three and a half years old.  She spoke about Hidden Oaks Elementary school, an elementary school which had just completed construction, and was located about five minutes down the street they live on.  Lee didn't attend this school, but Casey did starting with  kindergarten.

Cindy testified that Caylee Marie was born August 9, 2005.  She said that the first time that she found out that Casey was pregnant was on June 30th.  She said that the way she found out about Casey's pregnancy was when that Casey came to her workplace and told her.  Questioning about a wedding that the family attended, where there is a photograph of Casey seven months pregnant standing next to Cindy, began.  Cindy testified that the reason she didn't associate Casey's bloated stomach as being one of a pregnant woman was due to Casey's history of having severe bloating during her menstral cycles. Cindy also experienced severe bloating, and said that it could make both she and Casey appear to look like pregnant women.   In addition to that, Casey started putting on some weight, but Cindy attributed it to Casey being sedentary because she had taken a desk job at Universal Studios. She said that if Casey didn't move around, and being that Casey is short, her weight would be exaggerated.  Cindy said that in the end, Casey only gained about 15 pounds throughout the entire pregnancy.  When asked by prosecutors, Cindy testified that she never tried to hide Casey's pregnancy.  She said that as soon as she found out, she was excited and started planning a baby shower.  Cindy contacted everyone about the news.  They started making preparations for Caylee's arrival.  Cindy took Casey shopping for maternity clothes, they turned their home computer room into a baby's room.  A theme of Winnie the Pooh was chosen for the room.

When a photo of Caylee's bed was shown to Cindy and the jury, Cindy broke down sobbing.  The bed had Winnie the Pook bedspread and siding.  Cindy continued her testimony, in between sobs and wiping her tears away.  Her testimony about Caylee's bedroom and her little playhouse in the backyard was the most difficult for Cindy.


At one point the judge called for a short recess and Cindy stepped off the witness stand.  She walked by the defense table without looking at Casey.  The jury was out of the courtroom and the microphones in the courtroom were turned off.  The cameras however, were not.  As the cameras focused on Casey, we saw her initially flanked by two of her attorneys.  As Cindy walked by, Casey's attorneys parted and we saw Casey staring at her mother as she walked by.  Casey appeared to be looking for her mother to say something to her.  When she saw Cindy completely ignore her as she left the courtroom, Casey started to cry, and then her sadness became peppered with anger.  Not hiding her mouth as she's done throughout this trial, she started complaining to her female defense attorney, about either her mother's testimony or that she ignored Casey.  Unlike the pre-trial hearings from two years ago when Cindy would mouth the words "I love you" to Casey, this time Cindy did not look in her daughter's direction.  This has obviously hurt Casey deeply.   (Unable to read lips, I was only able to gather some things Casey was complaining about because she got so animated.  I saw her saying "She won't even look at me!". Her attorney put her arm around Casey and said "I know". Then Casey started crying and said " ... for three years. Nothing!", "How could she!", "I would never do that!" and "She was never there for me!" as she  waived her hands around and shook her head no).  The female defense attorney spoke softly with her in an attempt to calm her down.  The attorney appeared to try to explain why Casey's mother's actions, but that only angered her more.  After more than three minutes of angry tirade, Casey finally calmed down.  

Cindy testified about Caylee's playhouse and her love of swimming in the family's above-ground swimming pool.  Cindy also testified about the video she took of Caylee when she went with Cindy to visit Cindy's father, Caylee's great-grandfather, at the nursing home he was residing in.  Cindy testified that she took the video because she was afraid that her father, being as sick as he was, might not be alive very much longer.  After coming home from their visit of Cindy's father, Caylee and Cindy went swimming in their pool.  When Casey returned home, she came out to the pool and asked to join them, at which point Cindy said that Caylee and she had been in the pool for over an hour and it was getting cold. So they got out of the pool and Casey helped get Caylee out of the pool.  Then the three of them, Cindy, Casey and Caylee watched the video Cindy had taken of their visit at Cindy's father's nursing home.  She said that she and Casey both cried, because Cindy's father was now in hospice and they were afraid that he would not be alive much longer.  When asked if Cindy ever saw Caylee again after that day, June 16th, her voice trembled as she answered "No ma'am, I did not", and she wiped her tears away.

Cindy then testified about believing that Casey was employed at Universal Studios.  Cindy said that Casey had a name tag which was attached to a shamrock-themed lanyard.  She said that sometimes Casey had different people's names on the name tag she wore, saying that it was a common occurrence, and that it was considered a running joke at Universal - to switch name tags while at work. Cindy also said that she'd seen emails which were sent to Casey from her boss at Universal.  Cindy detailed Casey's work history, saying that she had met Casey's boss prior to Caylee being born. Cindy knew that for a few weeks, Casey did not work at Universal, but that afterwards she believed that Casey had gotten another job there.

Testimony then centered around Cindy's belief that Casey had a nanny, by the name of "Zanny".  Cindy recounted details about the nanny, including Zanny being Jeff Hopkins' girlfriend, and Jeff being the person who had introduced Casey to Zanny in Spring 2006.  Interrupting her testimony briefly, Cindy asked the judge to take down the picture of Caylee from the screen in front of her, because it was so upsetting to her.  The judge promptly had the picture removed from Cindy's screen.

Cindy then said that during Caylee's first few months of life, whenever it was necessary, she was babysat by one of Casey's best friends, Lauren Gibbs.  Cindy said that she'd met Lauren, knew where she lived and was very familiar with her.  When the prosecutor asked if Cindy had ever met Zanny, the answer was no.

When the prosecutor asked if Cindy had looked for Zanny, she said that she looked for her from July 15, 2008 until six weeks ago.  She never found her.

Cindy testified that she spoke with Casey on June 16, 2008 briefly around 4pm.  Casey told her that she was going to spend the night at Zanny's.  Cindy went to work early, since it was a Monday and there were early staff meetings on Mondays.  She also said that George was scheduled to go to work that day as well.  Whenever asked for specifics about what Casey told her, Cindy's recall was impressive.  She detailed things that Casey told her about her work days, including a big negotiation she was working on at Universal with the Hard Rock Cafe.  Cindy said that Casey also spoke about having a co-worker named Juliette Lewis who had a daughter called Annabelle.  From June 18th thru the 21st, Cindy spoke with Casey every day.  Although Caylee loved to speak on the phone with Cindy, Casey always gave her a reason why Caylee was unable to come to the phone.  "There was always a reason I missed her", Cindy said sadly, and she looked down. The entire time Cindy was testifying about Zanny, Casey sat expressionless, stone-faced.

Prosecutors then focused Cindy on July 3rd, and she testified about needing to speak to Casey about some "money issues" (whatever the "money issues" were, they were not discussed in detail during today's testimony).  Cindy wanted to speak to Casey face to face, and she also wanted to see Caylee since she hadn't seen her in so long.  She phoned Casey to find out where she was, and Casey told her she was at her job at Universal Studios.  Without telling Casey, Cindy drove to Universal around 3pm, parked in the parking lot in the Guest Services area and called Casey.  She told Casey that she was there and said "Can I talk to you?" at which point Casey told her that she was not actually at Universal Studios; she was in Jacksonville, Florida, which came as a total shock to Cindy.  Casey told Cindy that she had decided to take Caylee to Jacksonville, to Jeff's condo, to try to rekindle their relationship.  She told her mother that she didn't want her to know that she had left town with Caylee.  Upon hearing this, Cindy was upset and had her doubts that Casey was really in Jacksonville.

Wanting to find her daughter and Caylee, Cindy called her son, Lee, who told her that based on chatter on either MySpace or Facebook, Casey posted that she might go downtown for the 4th of July celebrations (in Orlando).  He said that he'd try to find her.  Feeling betrayed upon hearing that Casey was probably not in Jacksonville as she was told, Cindy created a MySpace account and put up a plea to Casey around 8pm.  In her posting, she vented about feeling betrayed, sent a "Friend" request to Casey and hoped that she would respond.  Unfamiliar with MySpace, Cindy thought that her posting would only be accessible to her MySpace "Friends" (the posting details were not discussed).  Casey never responded to Cindy's posting.  When Cindy finally reached Casey and asked her why she hadn't responded, Casey told her that she felt the posting was mean spirited, and that anyone could read that posting.  (Jose Baez, Casey's defense attorney, objected numerous times during this questioning.  During one sidebar, cameras focused on Casey as she was staring at her mother.  She looked stoic and then turned her attention to the sidebar conversation).  After the sidebar, the judge recessed for the day.

When Cindy stepped down from the witness stand, she again walked by without looking at Casey.

Testimony is set to recommence on Tuesday at 8:30am est, since Monday is a holiday (Memorial Day).

* - Casey's angry tirade video link:

1 comment:

  1. Thank you for posting this as I cannot read it anywhere else. Looking forward to the rest of Cindy's testimony. I feel so sorry for her and George...