The Darwin Exception

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Hey! I Can’t Find My Imaginary Office!

Posted by thedarwinexception on June 2, 2011

Another day in the Casey Anthony trial, another day packed with lies. I think all of this is getting redundant, and while I think that Casey has to take the stand to get her alleged abuse into testimony, I just don’t see how any 12 rational, logical, intelligent people would ever believe a single word she says. I think when the court officer is swearing this bitch in, she should wear a flame retardant uniform, because I’m not quite sure how Casey can swear to “tell the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth” without God striking her dead in a flaming ball of hellfire and brimstone. I won’t even believe her when she spells her name. I think she’ll spell it wrong just because it’s such a habit for her to lie.

But, anyway, at least we et a respite of a few witnesses on the stand that we might be able to believe. And it’s really not fair for the defense – the state’s witnesses look more credible now, just by sandwiching them in between the taped interviews of Casey lying.

First up – Jeffrey Hopkins. This guy is in the same boat as Zenaida Gonzalez – Casey took a real person’s name and wove it into her elaborate web of deception. But at least she only accused this guy of being a rich single dad, not a murderer.

So Jeff says on direct that he is 26, and first met Casey Anthony in Middle School. He says they were acquaintances rather than friends. He worked at Universal Studios for about a year in 2006, but never saw Casey there. He doesn’t have any kids, never used Zenaida Gonzalez as a nanny, and never introduced Zenaida Gonzalez to Casey. He has never lived in Jacksonville or North Carolina. He saw Casey on July 3rd 2008, at the Waterford Lakes Ale House. He was there with a couple of friends, not Casey and hadn’t planned on seeing her there. He had a brief conversation with her that consisted of not much more than “Hi! Haven’t seen ya – how ya been”. They exchanged numbers and that was the end of it. He later received a text message from her that seemed more like a mass group message than a personal one, inviting him to Fusion. He was aware that Casey had a daughter, but had never met the daughter, and Casey never told him her daughter was missing.

On Cross, Jeff says his middle name isn’t Michael, and he’s not sure if Casey had a crush on him in middle school. He says he’s not sure if he had a crush on her, but she was an attractive young lady. Jeff says he was contacted by Law Enforcement when this case first started, and he told law enforcement that he didn’t have a son named Zachary. He also told LE that he wasn’t rich from a trust fund, he never had a girlfriend named Zenaida and he didn’t introduce Zenaida to Casey. He also wasn’t moving him and his son in with Casey and Caylee. Baez asks if Jeff told Law Enforcement that all of these stories were just a great fiction by Casey. Jeff says yes. Baez then asks the standard question of “Do you know how Caylee passed away?” And Jeff says home.

On redirect, Jeff says he was first contacted by police in July of 2008, and has spoken to them twice since. Jeff says he doesn’t even know anyone named Zenaida Gonzalez.

He is excused. Leonard Turtora, the assistant manager of Loss Prevention at Universal Studios, is up next. He has been at this position for 5 years. On July 16th, 2008 Yuri Melich showed up at City Walk (a nightclub/restaurant area of Universal Studios) asking about an employee of Universal Studios. Melich was directed to Turtora’s office and Melich briefed him about the case he was working on. Melich asked about the status of Casey’s employment at Universal and Turtora was able to determine that. Casey was not currently, nor formerly employed by Universal. She had been previously employed by a third party at Universal. She was employed by ColorVision, a subsidiary of Kodak, taking pictures at Universal. She had stopped working for them in May 2006. He also told Melich that Jeffrey Hopkins had been employed by Universal from late 2001 to early 2002. Three was no record of a Juliet Lewis or Zenaida Gonzales.
Later that day he met Casey Anthony. Melich used the speakerphone in Turtora’s office to speak with Casey and ask her a series of questions relating to her employment at Universal. Turtora was not able to confirm anything that Casey said. So Melich asked her if it would be OK for a couple of detectives to pick her up and bring her to Universal. She agreed. About 45 minutes later, Turtora received a call from Melich that 2 detectives had arrived at Universal. Turtora met them at the security gate that Turtora had told Melich to go to. Turtora was introduced to Casey as an investigator for Universal who would be assisting them.

Turtora asked Casey if she was a current employee and she said she was. Turtora asked if she had her ID on her and she said no. Turtora told the security guard at the gate that Casey was a current employee and that they needed to get to her building. Turtora told the guard that she didn’t have her ID and he asked if she knew her employee number – she said she did not. He asked what department she worked in and she said events. The guard asked if it was marketing or entertainment and she said a little bit of both – which couldn’t be true. The guard attempted to look her up in his database by name, and he couldn’t find her. The guard motioned to Turtora to let him know that he couldn’t find Casey in the database, and Turtora gave him a slight nod to let him know that he already knew this. Turtora asked the guard what the next step would be and the guard said that they could call her supervisor.

Turtora asked Casey who her supervisor was and she said “Thomas Manley”. An officer used the company phone book to look up the name Manley and could find no one by that name. At that point, Turtora said that he could bring her and the officers onto the property as long as they stayed with him. They agreed. Fearing that they would be going on a long expedition to nowhere, Turtora asked quickly “Where are we going?” and Casey pointed to a building that Turtora knew had nothing to do with the events department and said they were going there. When they got inside the building, Melich asked Turtora – “are we in the events building?” At that point Casey looked at Turtora, put her hands in her back pockets and said “I don’t work here.” Turtora then arranged for the detectives and Casey to go into a conference room. Turtora went into a nearby break area. The detectives and Casey were in the conference room about 30-45 minutes.

On cross examination, Cheney Mason basically chastises Turtora for taking part in a such a deliberate and obvious charade on Casey. Mason says that even though Turtora knew Casey wasn’t an employee there, that Melich knew she wasn’t an employee, and the other two officers knew she wasn’t an employee, they all allowed her to lead them to the events building. Turtora says “There isn’t an events building, sir.” Which cracked me up for no reason whatsoever.

On redirect – Drane Burdick points out that when Casey came to Universal she knew she wasn’t an employee there. But she maintained this “charade”, as Mason put it.

Next up – Yuri Melich (again). Linda Drane Burdick continues the times line with Melich where he left it yesterday – with him dropping Casey off at home after the wild goose chase of finding Zanny’s apartment. He testifies that after he dropped Casey off at home he continued his investigation into the leads she had given him – starting by traveling to Universal Studios to track down the various co-workers Casey had mentioned. Casey had also said that Zenaida was a seasonal worker at Universal, and since Zenaida was the suspect at this point, Melich wanted to track her down. Casey had also mentioned she had a cell phone that had been stolen at her work – and that she had filled out a report. Melich also wanted to follow up on this and get a copy of the report – Casey had said that Jeff Hopkins and Zenaida’s alternate numbers had been in the memory of this phone.

Melich confirms the story Turtora had just given about meeting Turtora and calling Casey to get her to Universal. Melich says that when he called Casey he asked her to confirm the work information she had previously given him. He didn’t tell Casey he was at Universal sitting with the head of security. He put her on speakerphone so Turtora could confirm the information as she gave it. Melich asked her what her office number was and her extension and what her supervisors name was, and Turtora informed Melich that this information could not be confirmed. Melich asked Casey to come to Universal and had two officers pick her up.

Melich relates the events Turtora previously testified to about the security guard at the gate not being able to identify Casey as an employee. Melich does add that Casey’s story and lies were quite convincing as she talked to the security guard.

Once inside the gate Melich says that Casey directed them where to go to get to her office. Once she fessed up when they reached the building, that she didn’t really work there, Melich says they asked Turtora if there was a place they could go to talk to her. Turtora found them a small conference room. Casey agreed to speak with the detectives. Melich had a tape reorder with him, and taped the conversation with Casey. Casey was not under arrest at this time, and she knew that she was free to leave if she chose.

The tape is played for the jury and entered into evidence.

After the tape of the interview finishes playing, Burdick continues questioning Melich. Melich testifies that while the three officers were interviewing Casey, there were other officers continuing to question people and tracking down the leads that Casey had given them. Melich admits that the surveillance video he spoke of in the taped interview from SawGrass apartments was a lie – there was no surveillance video available from there. Detectives spoke with Amanda Macklin, the manager of the SawGrass apartments, who reported that a Zenaida Gonzalez had never been a resident there. Detectives also tried to obtain surveillance video from the Amscot but those cameras are dummies.

Casey had given Melich a zip drive that contained photographs of Caylee and her cell phone records for the months of June and July 2008.

At the conclusion of the Universal interview, Melich and the others left the building. When Melich got to the parking lot, Detective Allen was going through the DAVID database with Casey, looking at drivers licenses for any Zenaida Fernandez Gonzalez’s who were listed in the database. Casey had told detectives that Zanny had a silver Ford Focus.

Melich testifies that the department had received over 6,000 tips about Caylee and Zenaida Gonzalez’s. They never located the Zenaida Gonzalez that Casey had described. They also never found any evidence that Caylee had ever been with a Hispanic female after July 16th 2008.

The detectives took possession of Casey’s actual cell phone, along with the phone records. They also seized several items relating to Caylee – to use for DNA analysis, should that become necessary.

After Casey went through the DAVID database, Detective Allen transported her back to the Orange County Sheriff’s office, where she was placed under arrest for providing false information to a police officer, child neglect and obstructing a police investigation.

Cross of the witness is next – and Baez is being funny again. He notes to Melich that when Melich answers questions, he turns to the jury to speak directly to them. Baez asks Melich if he is taught to testify this way, and Melich says yes. That part of his training is learning how to talk to juries. Baez then asks if he is also taught how to be persuasive – and Melich says “Persuasive? Since this is for the juries benefit, I talk to them.” Baez then notes that he doesn’t look at the jury when he is answering the defense’s question – and it’s funny, because when Melich answers – by saying “I’m doing it now.” he looks at the jury. And Baez says “well, yeah, now that I’ve pointed it out to you.”

Baez asks if Zenaida was the suspect as of the 16th. Melich says yes. Baez says – and this is after you already know she doesn’t exist, after you knew of the odor in the car, after Casey lied to you about working tat Universal, and after finding out that she had all these imaginary friends that never existed –even after all of this, Casey was not a suspect. Melich says no, and Baez points out he didn’t turn to the jury to say that.

Baez says “But you can really say that she wasn’t a suspect?” And Melich says “A suspect of what, sir? She admitted she lied about certain aspects, but she was very vehement that the last person she saw Caylee with was Zenaida Fernandez Gonzalez.”

Baez asks again – “But you didn’t suspect Casey Anthony of foul play against her daughter at this point?” Melich says he didn’t’ know what to take of Casey Anthony – he couldn’t understand why she was lying to them when they were trying to help locate her child. Melich says that the only thing he suspected her of at that point was holding back information – still. Melich says that in the Universal interview, he ha offered her several different scenarios she could adopt – including one where Caylee was no longer alive – but she was adamant that Caylee was with this Zanny.

Baez then focuses on a line of questioning of the Detective that basically asks “Why the hell did you believe her for so long – she’s a liar! And you KNEW she was lying early in the investigation.” And he accuses Melich of continuing Casey’s ruse by “allowing” her to lie. And basically feeding her delusions by allowing her to go to Universal when Melich knew she didn’t work there – you know, as if Melich was torturing Casey by letting her lie and look silly. Melich says “Hey – she was very convincing!” I think Baez thinks that Melich should have just given Casey a break because she was obviously delusion and irrational. Again – I think that would have been dealt with better had he mounted a diminished capacity defense. He asks Melich what Melich would have done if Casey had told him not to sit on the couch because Zanny the Nanny was sitting there. Again – Diminished Capacity issues – not “Not Guilty” issues.

Baez then asks Melich about his interrogation techniques and trust building process. And how none of these techniques worked with Casey. Melich says “Well, she admitted she lied…”

Melich then says that when he left the interview room while speaking to Casey, he did call Cindy Anthony back. He says this is when he first heard of “the ladder incident”, where Cindy found the ladder up against the pool and the gate open sometime in June. Baez asks why he didn’t question Casey about this. Melich says it was just another piece of information that he had to investigate. Baez says that Melich has never confronted Casey about this information, and Melich agrees he hasn’t.

He then asks Melich about the authenticity of the hairbrush that was given to him, purportedly of Caylee’s. Baez asks if it was ever in question if it actually was Caylee’s. Both of these questions are met with sustained objections. I think that maybe this is why Cindy is having a heard time accepting that the body found was actually Caylee. Maybe there’s some question in her mind because of the hairbrush – it was eventually the source of the DNA used to identify Caylee’s body. Maybe Baez is feeding her delusion.
Burdick redirects the witness – and asks if Cindy ever gave Melich a specific date when the “ladder incident” happened. Melich says the only date he got was “sometime in June”. Burdick asks about the “pool accident” that was suggested during the interview and if Casey ever adopted that scenario as true. Melich says no.

He is excused. But he’ll be back.

The State then enters into evidence the video of Lee visiting Casey in Jail after she is first arrested on 7/25/2008.

After the video is concluded, Baez again renews his motion for a mistrial based on the bad things Lee says about Baez in the videos. Baez says there are also misstatements of laws and facts. The state says (correctly) that Baez’s motion is untimely. And the judge agrees, there was a deadline and Baez missed it. Out of all the hundreds of motions Baez filed, there was none made to redact the videos. (Idiot). Baez counters with “I’m raising the issue because they are highly prejudicial. I missed the deadline, but that doesn’t make them less prejudicial.” Yeah, that’s not an excuse, dude.

Perry rules that time deadlines are harsh. But Baez is shit out of luck. His renewed motion for a mistrial is denied. But Perry will let him write a curative instruction.

Next the State plays the video of George and Cindy Anthony’s morning and afternoon visits to Casey in jail on July 25th.

After this video, the state plays the Lee Anthony visit from July 28th.

When this video is complete, the State informs the judge that the defense has put a new witness on their list – it’s a Dr. Sally Jarioth, an expert in grief counseling. Baez describes her as an expert in the different ways that people grieve. Judge Perry explains that her testimony may not even be admissible, and suggests that the state depose her.

The defense also wants to introduce eviudence via George Anthony’s medical records. There will be a hearing on this issue (and the late discovery – again – by the defense) on Saturday.

» Patrick Bourgious July 24
» Parents July 25 Morning Part 1 | Part 2
» Parents July 25 Afternoon Part 1 | Part 2
» Lee Anthony July 25 Part 1 | Part 2 |

» Lee Anthony July 28 Part 1 | Part 2
» Parents July 30 Part 1 | Part 2
» George Anthony’s August 3 Jail House Visit Part 1| Part 2


5 Responses to “Hey! I Can’t Find My Imaginary Office!”

  1. Good work Kim.

    Just between you me and the lamppost if I was on the jury, a liar is guilty and she lies like a rug.

  2. tess said

    It’s pretty interesting how all these people get up to testify, tapes that are damming, and lies upon piles of lies and Casey has on the pout. When Jeff stated he wasn’t sure if he had a crush on her in middle school, he did say she was good looking girl, that elicited a little smile. Do you think we are a little self-absorbed? I also thought it was funny that Baez was jumping off the cliff because Lee didn’t like him and said some unflattering things about him. Never mind his client’s incessant lying to her family, just Baez didn’t look “pretty” at that point. I am just amazed at what everyday brings in this trial. I thought Spector was an adventure (and it was) but this one is rivaling that one for sheer mind-boggling lawyering. On a side note, I saw Linda Kenny Baden on one of the shows, and WTH happened. She looked terrible. The whole make-up drawer on her face at once.

  3. Cas in Wilmington said

    Saw photo of little cutie on bike; certainly understand you being drawn away from trial! 🙂

    One question; what is this I heard about one of the jurors saying she “couldn’t judge anyone”? Why would she be allowed on the jury?

    Thanks Kim!

    • Saw photo of little cutie on bike; certainly understand you being drawn away from trial!

      Yeah, I cheated all morning and went out and played – I’ve seen all these videos a million times, anyway.

      One question; what is this I heard about one of the jurors saying she “couldn’t judge anyone”? Why would she be allowed on the jury?

      Yeah, she’s a problem, I think. She said during the hardship stage of the voir dire that her only hardship with serving would be that she “doesn’t like to judge others”. She said that her religion didn’t allow for her to point fingers at anyone based on what others say. The prosecution tried to get her excused – twice – based on these statments, but because she is a black female (and because the defense – obviously – LOVED her) the defense challenged the prosecutions request to have her removed saying they were trying to get rid of her because she’s a minority. The defense won, because the judge himself had questioned the juror during voir dire and had her expand on her statements that she couldn’t judge anyone. The judge was satisifed that the juror would be able to follow the law. But not everyone has been convinced of that. Personally, I think that if the case ever gets to a penalty phase, even if this woman could convict Casey of murder – there’s no way she could recommend the death penalty. Luckily, Florida does’t require a unanimous death recommendation to impose that penalty.

      • Cas in Wilmington said

        I’m not so worried about death penalty, just want to see her convicted. That one juror could really mess up a reasonable verdict!

        Enjoy your weekend with your family.


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