Saturday, June 11, 2011


Dr. Neal Haskell is called.  He takes the jury through his education and experience. 
He’s been an expert witness in 28 state as well as around the world.
The court accepts Dr. Haskell as an expert witness.
Haskell was contacted by OCSO’s CSI Michael Vincent.  Vincent sent him samples of maggots and pupae in September.
Haskell needed an adult of the fly species to properly do his job.  That’s when he examined the towels and trash bag.
He identifies the box with the paper towels he received from Vincent.
There were hundreds of specimens and a colleague confirmed his finding, that the species are commonly found in decomposition.
The towels contained decomp fluid which attracted the flies.   The material was sent to Dr. Vass.  Vass reported back the material was adipocere.
Haskell then determined the timelines and temperature to do his analysis.
They found one leg of a blow fly.  They are attracted to decomposition to all types – human and non-human.  Blow flies appear at the earliest stage of decomposition.
If a body of a young child had been stored in the trunk of car and then later moved, would that confirm your findings?  Yes.
Different insects will come in at different stages of decomposition.  The various species found support the conclusion of the body being in the trunk and heat for a while.
Haskell says if the body was wrapped in a plastic bag or two it does tends to delay the appearance of the blow flies.
Haskell feels the body would have been in the trunk for a long time and would have been removed before the car was abandoned.  4 to 5 days is his estimate that Caylee was kept in the trunk.
Dr. Haskell went to Florida to inspect the car when he was notified Caylee’s remains had been found.  He arrived in Florida on December 16.
He went to the Suburban Drive scene and the impound yard and spoke with Simon Birch.  He collected specimens from Suburban and the ME’s office.
Bottom line, the remains were placed in the trunk quickly after death.  Some specimens indicated 4 to 5 days into decomposition in the trunk.  Others indicate the remains were in the woods from the June – July time frame and had to have contained body tissue when placed in the woods.
Jose Baez on cross…
You first heard about this case through Dr. Vass?  Yes, I was talking to him on another case at the time he mentioned it.
Vass and Haskell have worked together for 25 years.
Dr. Vass is a biochemist?  His degree is in anthropology.
Do you recall testifying he is a biochemist?
Objection.  Sustained.
Jose Baez bring up the ever annoying flip chart and starts to mark it up with scribbles.
Baez keeps jerking around with it was a garbage bag, it was a trash bag and Dr. Haskell is having none of his clowning around.
DNA can be grabbed from any cell material?  Yes, human DNA has been extracted from bugs and larvae.
Did you send any out for DNA testing?  No, I didn’t.
You don’t know what the study Dr. Vass did found, except for what he told you?  Correct.
You can’t testify intelligently about Dr. Vass’ study?  I can testify intelligently!
Dr. Haskell clearly dislikes Baez and has no respect for him.
Phorid flies were found in the were found in the vacuum filters from when they vacuumed the trunk before removing the carpet.
So those flies could have fallen out of the trash bag?  No, they were in the trunk.
So they could get into the trash bag, but not get out, like the roach motel?
Objection, sustained!
Btw, this is one of Baez’s scientific drawings.  How much do you think the jury gets from this?  
You were hired by the State?  Yes.
How much did you charge? $22k and by the way Mr. Baez, I haven’t been paid for the defense deposition!
Well, submit a bill.  I did submit a bill!
Then the checks in the mail!
Is there a difference between garbage and trash?  Yes, trash is inorganic and that’s all that was in the bag!  There was nothing decomposing in the bag!  There was no unprocessed food item.
So if decomposition was wiped up with the paper towel and then placed in the bag, would that explain the flies in the bag?  Absolutely.
Trash or garbage, that’s your opinion correct?  Yes.
My definition could be different from yours?  I’m sure it is.
Baez is asking questions that Haskell can’t even make sense of!
Dr. Haskell is excused.
Finally, recess is called!
Jennifer Welch is called by the State again. 
You arrived at Suburban Drive to begin photographing the scene?  Yes.
12/11 through 12/21 while you were photographing the scene, how many Law Enforcement members were there?  Around 50 I think.
It was difficult to walk on the surface because of the roots and heavy vegetation.  They cleared the area using machetes.
Photos of the dense root systems and vegetation with evidence markers are entered into evidence.
Did you collect this marked bone for evidence?  Yes.
Some 390 pieces of evidence were collected by her including bottles and pieces of black plastic bag and a piece of duct tape.
She also collected plastic pink strips with words that she identifies as the letters which came off Caylee’s shirt.
How far from the edge of the street from the weed line?  I don’t know, you would have to ask Mr. Murdock.
How far from the street to where the skull was found?  19’8″.
OMG, Baez makes her get down with a tape measure to show the distance to the jury.
The duct tape you found, where was it found?  You would have to ask Mr. Murdock with the diagram.
The defense continues to try to get the body placed closer to the road and not so far into the woods.
Welch is excused.
Recess while some equipment is hooked up.
Ronald Murdock is called.  He helped clear Suburban and mapping the crime scene.  They use a program, Total Station, to enter the data of measurements and where the evidence markers were located to generate dimensional maps.
For some reason this is not being shown to us!  While his computer screen works on the court monitors, it doesn’t work being streamed apparently.
From Suburban drive to area A is around 19 feet – we got that from Welch already.
December 11, 2008, he collected evidence from the Anthony home.
He identifies a photo of items in one of the sheds.  Then the shed with all the lawn tools and the gas cans which were collected.
Pages of heart stickers are identified.
Jose Baez calls for a sidebar.
Photos of both Caylee and Casey’s bedrooms are admitted.
Murdock identifies a bag with Winnie the Pooh bedding and another bag of Pooh items from a drawer in the home office.
He also collected items from the garage – black garbage bag that contained a canvas laundry bag matching the one found with Caylee.
Baez gets up to cross…
The diagram you showed us earlier showed the duct tape.  How far away from the skull was that found?  Some 6 1/4 feet away.
Did you find the tape in the garage also?  No.
The Henkel brand wasn’t anywhere in the house that he knows of.
No duct tape in the attic?  No.
Searched the back yard, the pool area and the sheds?  Yes.
No duct tape found?  None that I know of.
The gas can is the only item in the home is where you found Henkel duct tape?  That’s correct.
You searched the family cars?  Yes.
Murdock is excused.
Next witness is Gerry Johnston.  Owner of  firm who created the video animation of the crime scene – topographic mapping that was done for OCSO working with Murdock.
And we are done for the day!

(What happened during Saturday's witness testimonies in the Casey Anthony trial. Blog excerpt taken from since I was away)

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