Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Casey Anthony Loses Three More Motions: What Will The Defense Do Next?

Judge Belvin Perry released three more orders today, all denying the defense motions in limine.

First is the Order Denying Motion To Preclude Phantom "Heart Sticker" Evidence. The defense had claimed that since the examiner had destroyed the evidence either inadvertently or in bad faith, it can not be used in trial. The judge explained that this situation came between the cases cited in the defense motion.

...The defense has presented nothing to establish that the state either intentionally or negligently lost or disposed of evidence or that the evidence was unavoidable consumed. Ms. Fontaine's testimony would consist of a description of something she observed while she was examining the duct tape for latent fingerprints.

Therefore, Ms. Fontaine will be able to testify to what she saw on the duct tape, although she can't say it was a sticker.

Judge Perry ruled on both motions concerning hair-banding in his Order Denying Motion To Exclude Unreliable Evidence (Post Mortem Banding) And Amended Motion In Limine For Hearing On The Unreliability Of Scientific Testimony By Karen Lowe On Post-Mortem Hair Banding.

He cited the NY case which the prosecution brought to his attention. My favorite part of the decision was when Perry indicated that

The court notes that Mr. Petraco's, Dr. DeForest's, and Faye Ann Springer's qualifications as an expert in the field of forensic science are not subject to dispute.

He also indicated that Karen Lowe, the FBI hair and fiber analyst had read the peer-reviewed journals going back to 2008 and was going to testify that the hair was "consistent" with post-mortem banding. It will be up to the jury to decide whether or not to believe the testimony.

The judge also issued an Order Denying Motion In Limine To Exclude All Evidence Relating To Canine Searches and Alerts.

In his decision, the judge went into great detail as to other cases, Trejas v State (Texas), Clark v State (Maryland), and Harris v. State (Florida). Without mentioning any of the testimony presented in this case, Perry felt that there was no reason to keep the cadaver dog evidence out.

There have been other motions filed lately as well.

George and Cindy Anthony's attorney, Mark Lippman, recently filed a whopping 15 page motion with a memorandum attached making the document a 96-page long read. The Motion For Relatives Of Victim To Be Excused From The Rule Of Sequestration And Memorandum Of Law.

If you recall, there was a hearing where George and Cindy both testified. At that time, Lippman argued for them to be present as next-of-kin to the victim. Judge Perry made a comment which mentioned "changing stories" and refused to excuse them from the rule.

Bill Sheaffer, as usual has made comments about this in a conversation with Kathi Belich. It can be found at WFTV. Just expect a slow load on this, it's obviously very popular. Sheaffer thinks that the chances are "slim" and noted that there would be a risk to the defense if they are in the courtroom.

Thanks to Muzikman, we also have a defense motion, Motion to Reconsider Trunk Stain Motion.

In this motion, the defense pretty much tells Judge Perry that he probably got mixed up during the hearing because
The arguments for this specific motion where (sic) held at the conclusion of several scientific related hearings in which evidence was admitted on a variety of motions. It would be easy to overlook what the Court believed to be presented for one motion, but was actually being presented for multiple motions as is the case here.

Baez then went through the arguments that were presented. I still don't understand why he keeps insisting there was enough food in that garbage bag to produce fatty acids! When it comes into the trial, the CSU people will testify to the total lack of rotting garbage in the bag and to the not-so-terrible odor that emanated from it.

I wonder if Baez still believes all the stuff Henry Lee said early on during the "Nancy Grace" show.

I had absolutely no trouble during the hearing sorting out what was what. I wonder if Judge Perry will take umbrage at what Baez said!

While I'm at it, I should also mention a Motion In Limine filed by the defense on April 21.

In it, the defense argued that the pictures could not come in because they cannot be used to show consciousness of guilt. The only problem I see with that motion is that, as many others have already said, the prosecution never said that COG was the reason they wanted them admitted! Valhall already has a great article about it at the Hinky Meter, it's a must read if you already haven't!

So far, we have no hearing date and it wouldn't surprise me if the defense filed some more motions before next week. Let's face it, there are only 8 weekdays between now and jury selection.


FRG said...


Thank you for the update!

What a beautiful day for Caylee! Not so good for KC's defense though! LOL

I wonder if JB and CM miss HHJS yet... Oh well! Is CM having fun yet?

Justice for Caylee is coming! I have faith in Mrs. Burdick and Mr. Ashton!

Anonymous said...

I saw Linda K-Baden on Jane V-Mitchell couple nites ago agreeing that the nanny story was a lie....do we know why LKB left the case? I have not followed every entry.
Casey will be an old lady by the time the case goes to trial. Wonder what the tab to the taxpayers in the end will be. This is another state that has no money to pay teachers decently, etc.
Wes J.

Darcy said...

8 weekdays? 8 weekdays. It's been a long time coming - in a way, I am amazed that the trial date is actually HERE (sometimes it felt as if the pretrial would last forever - usually when Cheney Mason was speaking).

donchais said...

Thanks for always being on top of your game, ritanita!

Unknown said...

Thanks.....for your entry.

I never miss them....they are so
very insightful.

I'm hoping the HJP denies the latest motion from the Cindy Anthony camp....but they should be
forced to sit and view each and every autopsy photo put up on the big screen.....

ritanita said...

FRG, I also trust this wonderful prosecution team. We must not forget Frank George. He's going to make his contributions, I'm sure.

Darcy, it's 7 weekdays now! The count down has been going on for so long!

Donchais, can you tell I'm hyped?

Chris, I go along with Bill Sheaffer that he won't let them attend until after their testimony. I hope the prosecution saves the autopsy pictures for after their testimony.

WESH is reporting that the next status hearing will be May 4 (next Wednesday). I'll update the blog when I see it more than one place.

DNR87 said...

I am new to T & T, a couple months now. I've added it as one of my homepages and check for updates daily. I live in WA State, ol' Pacific NW. Grew up in Seattle. I've been to FL a few times in 2006 & 2007, Tallahassee & Jacksonville. I founded a home for teen mothers & a club type program for gang-deterence. Working w/HIGH RISK population for 30 yrs has given me A LOT of experience w/the courts.
I really appreciate your BLOG. VERY thorough. I'm sure I'll be getting my two cents in during the trial.
newby Diane

ritanita said...

Welcome aboard, DNR87! I think we're in for a bumpy ride!

Nora said...

Wow - what a productive day in court, finally. One thing is so odd to me: Ms. Fontaine will be able to testify to what she saw on the duct tape, although she can't say it was a sticker. So what is she supposed to say if she saw a sticker? Not tell the truth? I don't get this.

As for George and Cindy being in court, they should be there since Cindy is the one who called the police, she then lied, covered up to protect Casey. She's very much part of this. And besides, both she and George are Caylee's grandparents. They should see it all, and (is it too much to hope for) maybe that will help them get out of denial? (Even though that is not the legal point of them being present.)

Anonymous said...

What's with the way Casey comes into the courtroom? She is often all smiles. Once, she even grasped one of her attorneys at the waist. What's with that? Her behavior seems bizarre and inappropriate. I, too, am awaiting the trial. I am interested in seeing how the Anthony's hold up during their examinations on the stand. Wonder if Cindy will be cracking her gum as she did before when she was being questioned.

Diane said...

Now I do have a question. With regards to the impression of a heart sticker seen by ONE FBI lab analyst on a piece of the duct tape recovered from Caylee’s skull, is that ONE FBI lab tech the ONLY person who saw this. What about Dr. G, or her staff at the coroner's office? All that press was about ONE person's observation, and now it's gone, or are there others who saw it?
I'm glad HJP is letting the lab tech testify to their observation, though.
And, thanks for the welcome. You never know with trials, ups.... downs....hurry up and wait wait wait... It will be the show of MAY, talk about MAY SWEEPS.... I can't stop thinking about that adorable little girl... :( D

ritanita said...

Hi everyone!

I guess I didn't explain very clearly about the "phantom sticker" evidence.

When Ms. Fontaine examined the tape, prior to dusting it for fingerprints, she noticed the shape of a heart, possibly made from the residue from the sticker. She either tried to photograph it and failed or didn't think to photograph it.

She did show it to her supervisor, so she's not the only one to see it.

As for Casey's "walk" into court, I will have to say that I've given up trying to figure her out.

As for Casey's parents being in the courtroom, they will be able to be there after they testify and if Jose Baez releases them from testifying for the defense.

It is pretty much up to the discretion of the judge whether they are permitted to attend the entire trial.

Both of them will have to watch their behavior in court. Things will be a lot stricter during the trial with the jury present. They won't be able to make faces and express their displeasure during the prosecution's presentations.