Evidence in the Casey Anthony trial

Evidence in the Casey Anthony trial

This is a case of a missing child that got lost around July 2008. Casey was born in a place by the name Orlando in 1986. She was termed as a very brilliant young girl and someone who was very friendly and acted like just a normal American child. Her father worked in a department by the name law enforcement back then. However, she started developing some sort of lies back in high school after the family attended her graduation only to find out that she was short of several credits to graduate. This led to her dropout at the end of the year without the consent of the family making them believe that she would eventually walk together with the graduating class. This was just a path of getting away with graduation. When Casey turned 19 she started adding more weight something that led to her parents suspecting of pregnancy. She, however, lied that she was still a virgin but months later she confessed that she was about to give birth. Casey gave birth to a daughter by the name Caylee on 9th August in the year 2005. Three years later, Casey left the parents home together with her daughter after arguing. On 13th July 2008, the parents got the news that her car had been found in the yard and they had to go check. When the father went there all he could find was her purse and the baby’s toys. There was also some strong smell which was similar to something organic decomposing which was coming from where the trunk was (Battaglia, 2011). Casey was found at the boyfriend’s homestead and when she was asked about the child she talked of leaving it with a nanny whom she claims had kidnapped her daughter. A report was then made on July 16 the same year about the missing of the child and investigation started.

Casey got arrested on the very same day and accused of neglecting the child leaving her with a nanny who later disappeared. Investigations were made and a  dog cadaver sent to confirm the smell which was later found to be human decomposition (Moenssens,1973). Air sample taken from her car showed that there was some sort of remains in the trunk which were of a human being which was confirmed by the authorities. One of the evidence was that of the air sample and the results showing remains of a decomposed human being. Some skeletal remains were by a worker in a woody area near Casey’s homestead (Ensiminger,2016). The evidence was so physical and it led to the authorities declaring that indeed the skeletal remains were for baby Caylee. Some of the evidence that was not used in the case trial but could help in determining the truth was the toys found in Casey’s car which belonged to her daughter. The evidence that was admitted in the court of law indeed showed that Casey was responsible for the murder of her young daughter. There was some human hair found in the car which was assumed to have belonged to the deceased. The theory behind the human hair was that Casey kept the little girl’s hair after having subjected it to chloroform and threw it in the trunk. There was no tissue DNA or root that could have been extracted to perform clear identification. There was a paper towel that was collected in the content of the garbage found in the trunk which was found to be stained.

According to the research about the paper towel, the stain came from Adipocere which is the breaking down of fatty products by water present in an environment which is oxygen-deprived. The air sample that was collected before showed high levels of chloroform and this was evidence enough that Casey murdered the child. The authorities declared that the child was murdered through suffocation since there was a duct-tape which was attached to the child’s skull. This means that the tape was used as a weapon to kill her by covering the nasal cavity and the mouth ensuring that no breathe entered. Regarding the shreds of evidence, it was also found that Casey tried researching concerning self-defence and chloroform using her laptop.  The evidence provided by lay witnesses and the experts were both scientifically proven and physical. The verdict was made after a jury of five men and seven women gave their concerns regarding the case. An expert from Forensic testifies that the only explanation regarding the scent from the trunk was the decomposing body that was eventually found. The role of the forensic expert was to determine if truly the decomposition was of a human being. This meant that Casey indeed murdered the child and threw her away to decompose as a way of covering any evidence. Casey becomes ill at some point during the case and the judge by the name Perry is forced to call the hearing into recession until the accused gets better. Finally, the verdict is made and the accused is charged with abusing the child, aggravated slaughtering of the child and provision of false information since she had indicated that she had left the child with a baby sitter who later run away with her. Casey gets sentenced to four years in jail because of giving false information to the authorities and a fine of $1000 for all the incidences that she lied.


Battaglia, N. A. (2011). The Casey Anthony Trial and Wrongful Exonerations: How Trial by Media Cases Diminish Public Confidence in the Criminal Justice System. Alb. L. Rev.75, 1579.

Ensiminger, J., Ferguson, M. A., & Papet, L. E. (2016). Was There a Body in the Trunk: Volatile Organic Compounds in the Trial of Casey Anthony and the Evolving Search for a Chemical Profile for Human Decomposition. SMU Sci. & Tech. L. Rev.19, 275.

Moenssens, A. A., Inbau, F. E., & Starrs, J. E. (1973). Scientific evidence in criminal cases (p. 412). Mineola, NY: Foundation Press.


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