Tuesday, July 05, 2011

The Embarrassment Of The Casey Anthony Verdict

The decision would be a foregone conclusion.

Everyone knew Casey Anthony killed her daughter. They never once criticized the prosecutors. Defense lawyer Jose Baez was a punching bag for his colleagues, his "brothers of the bar" in Orlando, and the public who enjoyed trashing him hourly - and with 3 years experience, was merely comedic relief for "legal experts" on cable news shows whose last murder trial was, well, let's move on.

I don't know what happened to 2-year old Caylee Anthony. Neither do you.

Neither do you.

But according to you, the case was solid. Casey was a lying slut, she lied to the cops, a few people opined on whether her trunk had a dead body in it, and well, a child was dead, so there we have it. The fact that there was no murder weapon, no cause of death, no witnesses, and a bunch of other "no," didn't matter. Cable news and social media addicts had no doubt, and all that was left was 12 people to agree with the majority of twitter, Facebook, and the zombie audience of Nancy Grace.

And like all of our best laid plans, it just didn't work out.

The jury of 12 unanimously rejected that the state proved Casey Anthony killed her daughter.

CNN calls this a "stunning" conclusion. Why?

Because the public knew she was guilty.

People are "disgusted," "sick," shocked that their demands that "the verdict better be guilty" were not met. Even lawyers, officers of the court, are showing disrespect for the system for which they are a part.

According to those not on the jury, if they were on the jury, the vote would have been 11-1, apparently.

This same jury that would have been applauded upon the return of a guilty verdict, is now a "bunch of uneducated" "morons" who "couldn't get it right."

The media is almost speechless. Almost, because the legal commentators are now stepping all over themselves to backtrack on their disgraceful commentary during the case and try to claim they are oh-so-pleased that the Constitution worked today. The media is on the verge of tears that the jury won't speak to them. I wonder which reporter is falling over which reporter to get Jose Baez' interview now?

I hope someone will compile all the comments of the media throughout the case so that we can all watch the summary, and make it a required lesson in every journalism school in America.

For the media now doing the typical questioning of their behavior during the trial, save it. You made your bed, you lost your bet that there would be a death sentence, and questioning yourself is the definition of hypocrisy.

As for the public's "disgust," and whiny disastrous attempts at complete sentences on social media - I can't help you understand the system of American justice. You don't care. You want what you want, damn the Constitution and jury instructions. All I can say about you is that I will argue for your right to act like complete morons and I will argue for a criminal defendant's right to a fair trial, which includes the obligation of the state to prove each and every element of the charge(s) beyond and to the exclusion of a reasonable doubt.

The embarrassment of the Casey Anthony verdict is not the verdict, it's everything surrounding it.

Non-anonymous comments welcome.

Brian Tannebaum is a criminal defense lawyer in Miami, Florida practicing in state and federal court, and the author of The Truth About Hiring A Criminal Defense Lawyer.Share/Save/Bookmarkokdork.com rules Post to Twitter