Monday, July 20, 2009

Casey Anthony's Defense: Searching for Reasonable Doubt

New motions were filed last week by Casey Anthony's defense attorneys, Jose Baez and Andrea Lyon.

The first motion that caught my eye was the one which asks for Tim Miller, head of Texas Equusearch, to be certified as a material witness. In the motion, Jose Baez and Andrea Lyon requested documents:

1) Any and all records in its possession relating to its searches of the area in and around Suburban Drive and Hidden Oaks Elementary School, Orlando, Florida;

2) Any and all video or photographic records of its searches of the above area;

3) Any and all maps, charts, diagrams, drawings, and other pictorial representations relating to its search activities in and around the above area;

4) Any and all records of communications between Texas EquuSearch, its employees, members, and volunteers, and law enforcement made during the period of its search operations in Orlando, Florida; and

5) Any and all names, phone numbers, and other contact information of any employees, members, or volunteers with Texas Equusearch who may have searched the area in and around Suburban Drive and Hidden Oaks Elementary School, Orlando, Florida: (pp. 3-4)

The motion further stated the reason for needing this information:

9. The above mentioned documents and information are material to Ms. Casey's capital murder charge because they directly pertain to the timing and manner of the arrival of the remains of Caylee Marie Anthony at the site where they were discovered. (p. 2)

Read the motion

Along with the motion, a Memorandum of Law, a 17 page document in support of the motion, was filed along with appendices of supporting information which is 39 pages long.

At the same time, Baez and Lyon furnished a completed form for Judge Strickland to sign certifying Tim Miller as a material witness.

It is quite obvious that having a new attorney in the lead has brought about well-prepared motion concerning Tim Miller and Texas Equusearch. The first motion filed in January was extremely vague, the second motion, also filed in January, was slightly less vague by limiting the search area to "central Orlando." In a January 30, 2009 ruling, Judge Strickland denied the motion as written. Now, nearly six months later, we have a proper motion.

Read about the June 30 hearing HERE.

It remains to be seen, of course, if the motion will be granted. Now that the defense has jumped through the first hoop by requesting Miller be certified as a material witness in the case, the defense will still have to prove that TES was working as an agent of the state. Baez and Lyon provided their "proof" of this in the appendices, by showing that there were police officers scheduled to assist in the search and a $5000 donation to TES by the OCSO.

At the heart of this motion is the defense's search for reasonable doubt. They are desperately trying to prove that Caylee's remains had not been at the Suburban location when TES searched the area.

On December 11, Tim Miller had the following dialogue with Nancy Grace.

TIM MILLER, TEXAS EQUUSEARCH: Nancy, if you recall -- and I got a lot of criticism for calling the search off the first time, but we actually lost a four-wheeler back in this same exact area that one of the volunteers was on the four-wheeler and water went totally over it. And the next day is when I called the search off, and it`s the best choice I ever made because if you recall back then, I said, You know what? If this little girl is under the water and a horse steps on her or a four-wheeler goes over or even a person steps on her just thinking it`s some type of debris underneath the water, then we`ve jeopardized any future search efforts.

And then when we came back the second time, this water where she was found -- and I actually went right back to the scene with investigators a couple of hours ago. But this water was still high when we came back the second time. And a neighbor actually said it was about a week-and-a-half ago or two weeks at the most when the water receded enough that you could see anything there.

So this is an area that we tried to search. Weather conditions just would not allow it. And I will never, ever regret calling the search off at that time because we could have done far more damage than good if we had...

GRACE: Tim, I remember that very night -- I remember talking to you about that night on the show, asking you why you pulled out. And you made it very clear that you were so afraid that in all the water -- it was feet deep -- that you were afraid if Caylee`s remains were there, they would be ruined or scattered and would never be found. And boy, were you right, Tim Miller. You never made a better call in your life.

It would seem that TES never searched the specific area where the remains were found. Based on the information supplied in Appendix B of the documents provided to the court, Baez is relying on an interview between LE and Joy Wray in October, 2008. It's and interesting and confusing read, but one worthy of your attention. Joy Wray Interview

In one part of the interview, which appears to have taken place on Suburban Drive, Wray states that when she was there, there was water (pages 29 to 30). I find it interesting that Baez and Lyon didn't bother to supply those two pages.

After reading Ms. Wray's interview, I can't imagine her being a reliable witness for the defense. Read the interview to see if you agree with me.

The defense will also have to have their scientific experts who have placed Caylee's body at that location for many months. Then, that's another story.

Will the defense be able to raise reasonable doubt that Caylee's body was in it's final location? It will be interesting to see where the latest motion takes them in their quest!


Anonymous said...

Ritanita, thanks for that informative post. I appreciate you doing all that tedious reading and giving us the bottom line. Well done.

September MOO

Summer's Mom said...

I agree w/you on Joy Wray. She does come off as a bit of a ditz (here at least)- if it wasn't for that I'd say the prosecution should put her on, as their witness! Basically, she's saying there WAS water there, she didn't really look hard trying to find the body right there, she wouldn't trust George with her kid, that she's basically an Anthony family groupie, and no one ever saw this babysitter that Casey always talked about. Viola! A great prosecution witness! Except she's a ditz.

Anonymous said...

The woman sounds like a real nutcase. Anybody who actually believed "the babysitter" story would have to be. When she said she was "the only supporter" at one of the vigils...that's very telling. Everybody else had brains enough to know the truth.

Nora said...

I believe that Lee Anthony said that the nanny's name was code for Xanax, the drug. There is no doubt that Casey is a pathological, complusive liar, and I'm sure she's a narcissist and has her own version of sociopath going on. What will be interesting is how they will explain away Caley in the car's trunk, and why the nobody ever met this supposed nanny, and why the parents never went to look for Caylee. The reaction of Casey when Caylee was found is priceless evidence. I hope the prosecutors don't flub this one.

shari said...

When rebuttal of Baez claim for reasonable doubt comes to the fore..there will be NO doubt. Tim Miller has all the transcripts of what he said to NG about this site and the site was so covered in water (as was all of central florida) during this time. This is such a heavily wooded area and the area where the body was found would have gotten ALL the water runoff from the street at the time of FAYE. IF anyone searched at this exact place (and I doubt it from Tim Millers own words) they would have found nothing but waist deep water. There is NO REASONABLE DOUBT in this case. Baez and Lyon are going to have to come up with a true "hail Mary" in this case. Florida, and national sentiment are certainly not on their side!

katfish said...

Thank you Ritanita for a very informative report. It's about time some paperwork was filed properly by this defense team. Do you know if the prosecution has filed a response to this motion yet? Hopefully they will include those omitted pages of the Joy Wray interview in their response.
Thanks again!

ritanita said...


There haven't been any counter-motions filed that I know of.

The issue I have with this whole situation is that the wooded area in the vicinity of the crime scene is huge. It is my understanding from reading Kiomarie's interview that the area where they played as kids (well, that's one way to put it) is all the way up at the end of Suburban where there is a gate now. I believe that and other drier areas were searched.

However, as you pointed out, the area where the remains were found bank steeply down, away from the road and were wet. I also believe that the area was somewhat under water when former Dep. Cain was there. That area didn't dry up until much later, I'm thinking the end of October or early November.

That's one reason it was probably NEVER searched by TES. They quit due to losing and ATV in areas near the site that were also wet.

No! I'm not going back and reading all THAT material, too! I could be wrong on some of the details.

I'm hoping that the prosecution can get rid of this motion or get it limited to the area where the remains were found.

If Tim Miller is called as a witness in this trial, you can bet it will be as a prosecution witness!