Friday, July 8, 2011

Marcia Clark Gives Insight

I have had a thought about what maybe the jury got hung up on. The problem was I couldn't figure out how to get my thought into understandable, followable words. Marcia Clark, the prosecutor in the OJ Simpson case, did it for me.

Marcia Clark wrote an article for The Daily Beast, here is the excerpt that I found closest to what I was thinking.
So it was a circumstantial case. Most cases are. But the circumstances were compelling. Maybe not sufficient to prove premeditated murder—and I never believed the jury would approve the death penalty—but certainly enough to find Casey Anthony guilty of manslaughter at the very least.
Why didn’t they? My guess, since I’m writing this before the inevitable juror cameos, is that the jury didn’t necessarily believe Casey was innocent but weren’t convinced enough of her guilt to bring in a conviction. The thinking goes something like this: Sure, Casey’s behavior after her daughter's death looks bad—dancing, partying, lying—but that doesn’t mean she killed the baby. Sure, that duct tape was weird, but that could’ve been done after the baby was already dead—no way to know who or when that tape was put on the baby’s face. Sure, the chloroform computer search seems damning, but that may not even have been done by Casey (her mom took the fall for that one).
And so, every bit of evidence presented by the prosecution could’ve been tinged with doubt. At the end of the day, the jury might have found that they just couldn’t convict her based on evidence that was reconcilable with an innocent explanation—even if the weight of logic favored the guilty one.
Jury instructions are so numerous and complex, it’s a wonder jurors ever wade through them. And so it should come as no surprise that they can sometimes get stuck along the way. The instruction on circumstantial evidence is confusing even to lawyers. And reasonable doubt? That’s the hardest, most elusive one of all. And I think it’s where even the most fair-minded jurors can get derailed.
How? By confusing reasonable doubt with a reason to doubt. Some believe that thinking was in play in the Simpson case. After the verdict was read in the Simpson case, as the jury was leaving, one of them, I was later told, said: “We think he probably did it. We just didn’t think they proved it beyond a reasonable doubt.” In every case, a defense attorney will do his or her best to give the jury a reason to doubt. "Some other dude did it," or "some other dude threatened him." But those reasons don’t necessarily equate with a reasonable doubt. A reason does not equal reasonable. Sometimes, that distinction can get lost."

Reason to doubt is not the same as reasonable doubt. This, to me, is the best explanation of what happened with the Casey Anthony jury. Then I started looking at those all important jury instructions.

The jury instructions was 26 pages long. That is a huge amount of instructions, don't forget that JP pretty much read these instructions to the jury. I know that understanding the directions is a huge deal, but listening to an hour of lawyer speak.... well I would have tuned out after 15 min. You can read the jury instructions here. I read the instructions as to how to convict on each count. Let me tell you, had I been a juror I would have had to sit down with the instructions and rewrite them in plain English!!

So here is what I came up with:

First, you must decide if Casey Anthony killed Caylee Anthony. If yes, then you proceed through the counts. If no, you move out of the homicide & murder categories. Without the belief that Casey killed Caylee you can not consider Felony Murder.

We know that the jury did not believe that Casey killed Caylee.
So now we move to Aggravated Child Abuse
"To prove the crime of Aggravated Child Abuse, the State must prove the following two elements beyond a reasonable doubt:
1. Casey Anthony knowingly or willfully committed child abuse upon Caylee Anthony and in so doing caused great bodily harm, permanent disability or permanent disfigurement.
2. Caylee Anthony was under the age of 18

Child abuse means the intentional infliction of physical or mental injury upon a child or an intentional act that could reasonably be expected to result in physical or mental injury to a child."

In reading this as defined by the courts Casey was not proven guilty. At no point did the state prove that Casey caused intentional infliction of physical or mental injury or that Casey did some act knowing it could injury. Did Casey use the chloroform? Did she put that duct tape on Caylee's mouth & nose? I believe she did. In order for the jury to have found Casey guilty of Aggravated Child Abuse they would have had to believe Casey placed the tape over Caylee's face or that Casey used chloroform on Caylee based upon the evidence.

The key line in the entire instruction is this one--
"It is to the evidence introduced in this trial, and to it alone, that you are to look for that proof."
That sentence means you have to take out how YOU feel, what your GUT instinct is & look only at the evidence.

When I take a step back, remove my emotions this is what I see.
Most probable cause of Caylee's death ---duct tape over nose & mouth
Said duct tape is linked to the Anthony home but not linked directly to Casey
Items Caylee was "buried" in --- linked to Anthony home but not directly to Casey
Heart Sticker --- similar stickers were found in Casey's belongings but not the EXACT one
Decomp in the car-- I felt this was proven, but without a link from Casey to Caylee's remains it doesn't matter.

So, now that I have had days to calm down & I have looked at the instructions the jury had, they made the only decision they could.

Do I agree with it, hell no.
Would I have held out in 11-1, you bet your sweet behind.
Did Casey kill Caylee so she could live that "Beautiful Life", those photos of her partying proved that. Did Cindy most likely know from at least August where Caylee was, yep.
Should Cindy face perjury charges, without a doubt.
Will I continue to boycott the Anthony family & anything that will make them $$$ from Caylee's death, you can count on it.
The evidence did prove that Caylee was murdered & Casey had help in the cover up.

What this says to our children is that if you lie & hold tight to that lie, get everyone to lie along with you, you will not face any consequences.

The biggest problem in this case was that Caylee's body wasn't found until there was absolutely no soft tissue left. Without that soft tissue key evidence could not be recovered, key questions could not be answered, thus on July 17 Casey Anthony will go free.
I urge you to continue in the boycott of all things that will bring the family $$$ from Caylee's death.

Not reporting Caylee missing does not fall under child abuse, thus we must support Caylee's law.

Justice for Caylee.

As always this blog expresses my own personal opinion. I have no intent to misrepresent facts of this case. What is contained here is not intended to be slanderous or malicious.

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