Jurors under fire from US public over shock Casey Anthony verdict

As armchair pundits across the United States continued to express astonishment, and in many cases disgust, at the acquittal of Casey Anthony over the 2008 death of her young daughter in Florida, a back-up juror who sat through the testimony and the jury deliberations said the right verdicts had been reached.

Today Judge Belvin Perry, of Orange County courthouse in Orlando, will decide whether to sentence Ms Anthony to additional prison time for the four guilty counts of lying to police in the weeks after her baby vanished. But with the jury acquitting her of murdering her daughter, Caylee, he may release her on time served.

Until Tuesday evening, the 25-year-old was facing the prospect of being found guilty of first-degree murder and possibly ushered to Death Row. She is now on the brink of freedom and is likely to get opportunities to cash in on her celebrity with interviews, book rights or a film.

The trial was catapulted to the top of US daytime ratings in part by Nancy Grace, a shrill former prosecutor turned television anchor on HLN, a channel that belongs to CNN. She unabashedly pushed her view that "tot mum", as she called Ms Anthony, had killed her child. She became apoplectic when the verdicts were read out, suggesting the "devil is dancing tonight".

All 12 of the jurors have declined to speak about the verdicts, but the alternate juror, who sits in on the case but votes only if one of the 12 has to drop out, voiced disappointment at the tidal wave of opprobrium from television commentators and many of the 500-odd spectators who were outside the courthouse on Tuesday.

Just as with the OJ Simpson trial 15 years ago, many Americans are unlikely to let go of their view that Ms Anthony has been allowed to get away with murder. "The prosecution failed to prove their case and there was reasonable doubt," the alternate juror told ABC News. "They didn't show us how Caylee died. They didn't show us a motive. I'm sorry people feel that way. They [the jurors] really listened to this case and kept an open mind."

The two-year-old disappeared in 2008 and her body was found in a swamp near her home six months later. Prosecutors claimed Ms Anthony suffocated the child, left her in the trunk of her car then dumped her. But the evidence was largely circumstantial and nothing was presented to directly link the mother with the death. The defence said Caylee had drowned by accident in a pool and that as the family panicked, her father had tried to help the death look like a murder, by applying duct tape to her mouth.

Suggested Topics
Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
ebooksAn unforgettable anthology of contemporary reportage
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Business Development Manager / Sales - OTE £45,000

£35000 - £45000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This company is a solutions / s...

Recruitment Genius: Sales Executive - OTE £45,000

£18000 - £45000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Sales Executive is required t...

Recruitment Genius: Test Development Engineer

£35000 - £40000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Are you inspired to bring new a...

Recruitment Genius: Trainee Motor Engineer

£14000 - £18000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an exciting opportunity...

Day In a Page

Sepp Blatter resignation: The beginning of Fifa's long road to reform?

Does Blatter's departure mean Fifa will automatically clean up its act?

Don't bet on it, says Tom Peck
Charles Kennedy: The baby of the House who grew into a Lib Dem giant

The baby of the House who grew into a Lib Dem giant

Charles Kennedy was consistently a man of the centre-left, dedicated to social justice, but was also a champion of liberty and an opponent of the nanny-state, says Baroness Williams
Syria civil war: The harrowing testament of a five-year-old victim of this endless conflict

The harrowing testament of a five-year-old victim of Syria's endless civil war

Sahar Qanbar lost her mother and brother as civilians and government soldiers fought side by side after being surrounded by brutal Islamist fighters. Robert Fisk visited her
The future of songwriting: How streaming is changing everything we know about making music

The future of songwriting

How streaming is changing everything we know about making music
William Shemin and Henry Johnson: Jewish and black soldiers receive World War I Medal of Honor amid claims of discrimination

Recognition at last

Jewish and black soldiers who fought in WWI finally receive medals after claims of discrimination
Beating obesity: The new pacemaker which helps over-eaters

Beating obesity

The new pacemaker which helps over-eaters
9 best women's festival waterproofs

Ready for rain: 9 best women's festival waterproofs

These are the macs to keep your denim dry and your hair frizz-free(ish)
Cycling World Hour Record: Nervous Sir Bradley Wiggins ready for pain as he prepares to go distance

Wiggins worried

Nervous Sir Bradley ready for pain as he prepares to attempt cycling's World Hour Record
On your feet! Spending at least two hours a day standing reduces the risk of heart attacks, cancer and diabetes, according to new research

On your feet!

Spending half the day standing 'reduces risk of heart attacks and cancer'
Liverpool close in on Milner signing

Liverpool close in on Milner signing

Reds baulk at Christian Benteke £32.5m release clause
With scores of surgeries closing, what hope is there for the David Cameron's promise of 5,000 more GPs and a 24/7 NHS?

The big NHS question

Why are there so few new GPs when so many want to study medicine?
Big knickers are back: Thongs ain't what they used to be

Thongs ain't what they used to be

Big knickers are back
Thurston Moore interview

Thurston Moore interview

On living in London, Sonic Youth and musical memoirs
In full bloom

In full bloom

Floral print womenswear
From leading man to Elephant Man, Bradley Cooper is terrific

From leading man to Elephant Man

Bradley Cooper is terrific