A Few Thoughts on the Casey Anthony Trial

Jul 13, 2011

1. The standard for conviction in a criminal trial is, “Beyond a Reasonable Doubt.” Notice that this does not say, “Beyond Any Doubt.” It seems like in this case, that the jury was looking at the evidence through the latter, rather than the former lens. A jury can convict while still having minor doubts. The weight of the evidence should tip the scales to the person’s guilt.

2. Juries today seem to be brainwashed by television shows like “CSI” and “Law & Order.” There are not always going to be witnesses, a smoking gun, DNA evidence, or fingerprints. When these things are not present, the jury can still convict someone. It does mean that the jury is going to have to work harder and look at the evidence much closer. These guys only deliberated for 11 hours. That is hardly enough time to pick a foreman, order coffee, and decide what they were going to have for lunch. There is no way that they sifted through all that evidence in that short amount of time.
 
3. The Prosecution made a strong case. Yes, much of the evidence was circumstantial, but it was a mountain of circumstantial evidence. It was the jury’s job to sift and sort through the evidence and connect the dots. Do the dots connect to form the picture that the Prosecution presented?
 
4. The Defense presented a very weak case. I was surprised at how weak and unoriginal it was. There was a half-hearted argument that Casey’s dad had molested her. The lawyer really could not develop that argument or any of the others because there was no way he was going to put his client on the stand. Two of the more ridiculous statements that her lawyer made were, “This was a horrible accident that spiraled out of control,” and the reason Casey was out partying and had not reported her daughter missing was because, “everyone grieves in different ways.” At least Johnny Cochran talked in rhymes when he got OJ off, “If the glove doesn’t fit, you must acquit.”
 
Again juries are supposed to look at the evidence, connect the dots and see what picture is there after the dots are connected. There are no secrets here. The trial was televised and the public had access to all the evidence that the jury did. The vast majority of people who kept up with the trial connected the dots and emerged with a very different picture than the one the jury came up with.
 
What are your thoughts on the trial and the verdict?
 
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