The Darwin Exception

because it's not always survival of the fittest – sometimes the idiots get through

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What’s that, Garus?? Timmy is in the well?!?

Posted by thedarwinexception on June 8, 2011

Well, thank God Dr. Arpad Vass is done. It was distracting listening to him yesterday. And it was painful to watch Baez make a fool of himself over and over. Instead of some of those ridiculous motions that he made, he should have been preparing himself for some of this technical testimony – and, of course, writing motions to redact the videos.

I truly question Casey’s ability to have a fair and effective trial. I’ll wait until the defense case begins to truly gauge Baez’s abilities, but right now I think they are questionable at best, and nonexistent at worst.

It’s really a shame.

First up today, the state recalls Gerardo Bloise. He testifies that he received a bag of trash from Awilda McBryde on July 16th, 2008. He removed the plastic bag that contained several trash items, and did a visual inspection of the items, as well as photographed it. The mouth of the plastic garbage bag was slightly open when he received it.

Bloise began to inspect the items that were in the white garbage bag. He removed the items through the opening in the garbage bag without cutting or tearing the bag. He took each item out of the bag and since some of the items int eh bag were wet, he placed the items from the bag in the “dry room”. The items were in the dry room for approximately two days. This is a room in the forensics lab that they use to dry out wet items.

Bloise says that the bag gave off the odor of normal trash, and did not smell like the car.

Once the items were removed from the dry room, Bloise placed them in a cardboard box and placed them in an evidence locker. They were dry at that time.

The state introduces pictures of the trash – pictures in the bag, out of the bag, in the drying room, out of the drying room, the paper items, the non paper items, the items wet, all spread out……yeah, it’s trash. Although it does make me wonder about my own kitchen trash. Can you imagine Gerardo Bloise going item by item through a typical daily bag of your trash? What would be put into evidence? Linda Drane Burdick would be up there questioning Bloise: “Yes, is this a picture of a pile of dog shit from a spoiled Cairn terrier?” “Yes” “Is this 14 boxes of empty Little Debbie Snack Cake boxes?” “Yes” “Is this a receipt from McDonald’s for 4 Super Sized Number Two Meal Deals?” “Yes – we are assuming it was an error, because it says number of diners – one.” (They don’t know Paul….) I doubt they’d have to put my trash into the “dry room” though. Unless they wanted to dry out the dog poop.

Bloise then itemizes the 37 items found in the trash bag: Bloise documented each item and placed them in separate envelopes.

1. Empty Cherry Coca Cola Can
2. Empty Coca Cola Classic Can
3. Empty Milwaukee’s Best Light Beer Can
4. Empty Sprite Can
5. Empty Copenhagen Tobacco Tin Can
6. One Hair Pin
7. 3 Plastic Tie Wraps
8. Empty Dr. Pepper Soda Can
9. Empty Pepsi Can
10. Empty Mountain Dew Can
11. Oscar Meyer Plastic Container
12. Empty Small Crystal Light Container
13. Empty Crystal Light Bottle with brown liquid inside
14. Bottle of Kiwi Sport Cleaner
15. Empty Bottle of Arm & Hammer Detergent
16. Crystal Light Soft Drink Mix
17. Empty Black Container
18. Empty Broken Pizza Box
19. Empty Carton of Cherry Coke
20. Empty Velveeta Cheese Box with Napkin Attached
21. Empty Carton of Velveeta
22. Empty Velveeta Box
23. Empty Package of Parliament Light Cigarettes
24. Empty Package Marlboro Cigarettes
25. Empty Package Trident Splash
26. 2 Empty Aluminum Wraps of Velveeta Cheese
27. White Plastic Hangar – Broken
28. Empty Wrapper Italian Bread – Roma – with Napkin attached to it
29. Document of Full Sail Registration
30. 3 Receipts
31. 4 Air Freshener Sheets
32. 5 Napkins
33. Plastic Wrapper of Stouffer’s Garlic Chicken
34. 3 Small Pieces Plastic Wrap
35. 3 Pieces of Aluminum Foil
36. Empty Can of Sprite Soda
37. Piece of Fabric (Made in Honduras)

All the cans were empty – as was the pizza box and the Velveeta cartons– (so one wonders where any smell would be coming from)

Baez crosses – He asks if the trash was originally wet, and if Bloise put it in a dry room, if by doing that Bloise essentially destroyed evidence? Baez placates the witness by saying, you now, poor Bloise had no idea this would be critical evidence – and it wasn’t his intention to destroy evidence, but, you know, ultimately, that’s what happened. OK – well, altered then, not destroyed. Bloise says he just received evidence and he went by the protocol and preserved it. That’s all he did – preserved it. And documented it – he preserved and documented it. He destroyed nothing – the evidence is there.

Baez then shows Bloise a plastic bag containing paper towels. At one time they were moist – then they went into the dry room and dried – then put in a plastic bag. (Which is a mistake – all evidence should be put in paper, not plastic. Plastic tends to hold moisture and break compounds down.) Baez takes Bloise to task for putting this in a plastic bag – he asks about DNA evidence and what might be destroyed by being in plastic. Bloise says that at the time he inspected the paper towels and saw nothing of forensic value, so he put the paper towels in a plastic bag. Baez says, well, you know, it wasn’t Bloise’s intention to destroy evidence. Or alter it, excuse me, ALTER evidence.

On Re-direct Burdick asks why they dry evidence before it is stored. Bloise says it is to allow for better inspection of the items. It is also to retard bacterial growth – like mold. Burdick also has the witness if the paper towels were stored in plastic because there was bug larvae n it. The witness doesn’t remember.

On Re-Cross, Baez asks about the air samples done on the dry garbage. Bloise says he has no knowledge of air samples done. Baez asks if DNA samples can be obtained from bug larvae. (Can they? Because that’s like Jurassic Park Shit, isn’t it?? They aren’t going to start cloning raptors, are they??)

The witness is excused. And Arpad Vass is back. Only for the limited purpose of re-identifying the can containing the carpet sample that he testified about yesterday. Oh – that’s too bad. Seems Ashton yesterday showed him the wrong can and he identified it. The defense is going to have a field day with this – well, probably not. I don’t think Baez is skilled enough for “field days” – but give this scenario to Johnny Cochran and there would be motions for striking the witnesses entire testimony. Tsk. Tsk.

Baez crosses. He asks “So, yesterday, you testified about a can you didn’t even do analysis on?” And Vass says “Well, a can – I didn’t test a can.” Baez asks if he identify the can yesterday through markings on it – and if he admitted the wrong piece of evidence – and if this is because he only works at a research facility, and not a forensics lab, and they aren’t familiar with handling important pieces of evidence. The witness just kind of shrugs and says “Eh….it was a can…” But you know, this was a huge error. One would expect a scientist and an expert witness to be more aware of small details. The jury can wonder if, you know, if he’s this sloppy – well, what else is he sloppy about?

The state then calls Michael Rickenbach. He works for the FBI as a forensic chemist examiner. (Here’s the Forensic chemist Baez wanted yesterday…) Rickenbach has a PhD in Chemistry. He’s been qualified as an expert witness before – like 12- 15 times. Mainly in Federal Court. (Baez has no objections to him being submitted as an expert witness – he must be excited for a chemist at last!)

The witness was given some items from this case for examination in August, 2008 Ashton shows him all the things he had examined and has him identify them and the items are entered into evidence.

This witness was sent the items specifically to test for the presence of chloroform. He says when he received the items, he opened each one individually, noted each of them for any specific characteristics of staining or noticeable defects. He then took samples from each item and placed the samples in glass vials and subjected each to head space gas chromatography.

The first item he did testing on was a piece of the spare tire cover. He opened the can, observed the material inside, took a cutting based on staining, put it in a sealed gas vial and subjected it to head space gas chromatography. The witness testifies that residues of chloroform were present in the sample.

The next item was a piece of the left side of the trunk liner. He did the same analysis. The result was that chemicals consistent with chloroform were present in the sample. (Consistent with but not an identification – one test didn’t show positive results, one did…)

The next item tested using the same methods was the right side of the trunk liner. The result was that chemicals consistent with chloroform were present in the sample.

Cross of Witness: The witness testifies about the GCSM. This is a sensitive machine, and can pick up chemicals in water. The machine can break down compounds into very small chemical samples. The second test the witness used was the same as the GCSM, but using a different detector.
Chloroform is usually found in a liquid state – it was not in a liquid here – but when put through the GCSM, it detected the small amounts in the materials. Chloroform can be detected in lots of cleaning agents, including detergents. Chloroform can also be found in water. Baez asks if chloroform can be found in chlorinated swimming pools, the witness doesn’t know. When detected in cleaning products, the chloroform found was found in very small amounts- like in this case.

The witness then explains what a chromatogram is – basically it’s the output from the GCSM. It’s a graph showing the levels of any single chemical the GCSM has detected. The vertical axis, shows the intensity or level of chemical present, the horizontal axis, shows how long it took for that specific chemical to be released from the sample.

Baez asks the witness what the difference is between a quantitative and a qualitative analysis. The witness explains that in a qualitative analysis, you are just trying to identify what is in a sample, a quantitative analysis tells you how much is there.

The witness testifies that when he did his analysis he had an internal standard, and ran dual tests on the samples. The witness testifies that the amount of chloroform he found in the sample was a small amount. It was not “shockingly high” levels of chloroform.

OK – now this, again, is little disingenuous and a little confusing, maybe. This chemist was not running air samples. He was testing actual pieces f fabric – where one would expect to have only “trace amounts” of chloroforms, if there was any present at all. Chloroform evaporates very quickly. Dr. Vass did air samples – and found “shockingly high” levels. Trace amounts of compound in the fabric are consistent with the “shockingly high” air samples. I hope the prosecution points this out to the jury and makes them understand the difference.

Baez goes through each of the samples that Rickenbach tested – and the results he got.

Q22 – A Piece of the spare tire cover in an airtight can– residue of chloroform. Significantly lower levels than the positive sample.

Q23 – Another portion of the Spare tire Cover – residue of chloroform.

Q24 – Left side of trunk liner – chemical consistent of chloroform – one of the tests detected low levels – second method found no trace.

Q25 – Right side of trunk liner – chemical consistent of chloroform – one of the tests detected low levels – second method found no trace.

Q44 – Piece of spare tire cover – residue of chloroform at low levels.

Q45 – Piece of Spare tire cover – residue of chloroform at low levels.

Baez then asks about the low level residues – he asks if theses levels are common in cleaning products – and the witness says yes.

On re-direct, Ashton asks the witness If he fund any other chemicals present that would be found in cleaning products. The witness says that he was tasked only with analyzing the samples for chloroform – he didn’t look for any other chemicals.
The witness testifies that “low” is a subjective term. And, like I hoped they would, the prosecution does ask the witness about searching for chloroform in a solid form. The witness says that this is the first time he’s ever done that – generally if he is analyzing for chloroform, he will be looking for it or testing it in a liquid form. So the witness does agree that he has no perspective to judge exactly what a “high” or “low” amount of chloroform in a carpet would be.

The witness then testifies that the way the large piece of tire cover came to him was packed in a box. And that the basic properties of chloroform would allow for the chloroform to evaporate off of the item rather quickly. Chloroform is a volatile chemical and doesn’t stay around long – the witness says that he was quite surprised to find any chloroform at all – that he would have thought that the chloroform would have all dissipated.

Ashton then goes through the comparison of the control standard to the actual sample the witness rant the test against. The control sample was 0.01% in water – or 100 ppm (parts per million). This is what he compared the sample to.

Reluctantly, the witness gives a rough estimate of the percentage of chloroform in sample Q22, which is 5% of the amount in the control sample. Q23 was approximately .1% of the control sample (This was the unsealed spare tire cover.) The sealed container contained much greater levels than the unsealed container. Q44 was 1% of the control sample. Q45 was approximately .2% of the control sample. The witness also points out that the cuttings he took were not uniform. One piece may have been larger than another, and therefore could have more chemical on it. The witness also says that it is possible that much of the chloroform could have evaporated by the time the samples were taken.

This witness says he has never tested for chloroform in air samples.

ReCross by Baez – Baez asks the witness to again say that doing a quantitative analysis of the amounts in the samples the way the prosecution asked him to do was not the correct way to do it – as Baez puts it “you wouldn’t want to mislead a jury that way, right?” Which pisses Ashton off. But the judge lets him answer and the witness says that he wants to be precise, and he can’t, and he doesn’t want to mislead anyone. Baez then brings up that since this witness has never tested carpet samples for chloroform before – or tested any solid material for chloroform – that this is all a guess for him. The witness then brings up that he does know the packaging would affect the amount of chloroform – since chloroform is a volatile chemical.

Ashton then asks the witness that if the witness can’t quantify legitimately the amount of chloroform in the carpet sample – the how is the witness able to answer defense counsels question about comparing the amount to the amount in cleaning supplies? The witness says that he can compare the amounts in the samples and the amounts in cleaning products only to the positive control – the witness says that when he said the amounts were similar – he meant only that they were detectable – not that they were quantitatively similar – because he doesn’t know the precise quantity in the samples.

The witness is excused.

The next witness is Jason R. Forgey. He is in the K-9 unit of the Orange County Sheriff’s Department. He is a K-9 handler and has been handling dogs since 1991 exclusively. Forgey cross trained with the K-9 unit before actually working with the unit. Originally he was a part time handler in the bloodhound unit. The initial scent training is 5 weeks long. He and his dog did follow up training – a minimum of 2 tracks per month. He worked with canine Garrett for 10 or 11 months until Garrett was put down. Then he received a second dog, Ike, another bloodhound. Forgey then trained Ike, in scent discrimination – teaching the dog to learn the odor of what the handler scented him on. Forgey worked with Ike until 2004-5 when Ike was turned over to another handler. Forgey had multiple dogs he was training in different areas – including in 2002, when he worked with a dog named Bones who was trained as a single purpose dog. The dog Bones was trained to locate human remains. This was his “job”. Along with his obedience training, he is trained to detect human decomposition. The dog and handler go through 160 hours of specialty training in this area and then they take proficiency exams before they can be deployed in the field. Forgey was trained int his area after 9/11 when the two dogs that they had were converted to EOD (explosives) dogs. Forgey was then next in line to train with a Cadaver dog, so he trained two dogs at the same time – Ike and Bones.

Training a cadaver dog consists of first introducing the dog to the odor – to see if it is something he will be comfortable with. The they go through an “imprinting” stage – where the handler takes the dog straight to the odor and teaches it the behavior the handler would like the dog to display as his “Final Alert”. For instance, if you want the dog to sit when he finds the odor, during the imprint stage the handler will take the dog straight to the odor, and teach it to sit, and reward the dog when he completes this. The next phase of teaching the dog is “searching” – if you have the odor in a can, you would spread multiple cans around and give the dog his command and have the dog search for the can with the odor, and then sit as his final alert when he finds the can.

A “Final Trained Alert” can be any recognizable body change that the handler has trained the dog to do when the dog has found the source of a scent – a down, a sit, a lay. . A “Final Alert Phase” is when the dog is working the source of the odor – when he gets a whiff of the sent he is searching and there are changes in his body – whether that’s his breathing patterns, the lift of his muzzle, something the handler recognizes as the dog alerting to a scent.

When Forgery trained Bones – his Final Trained Alert was a sit. Forgey trained Bones with rags soaked in the chest cavities of cadavers. Over the course of training the cadaver dog, Forgey used bones (actual human bones, not just the dog’s name), placentas, blood, tissue, psuedo-scent for drowning victims (a pseudo-scent is a man made tablet that gives off a human scent. The trainers place the tablet into the water so the dogs can learn to hunt for drowning victims.) Forgey also used grave dirt as training aid.

After a while, the decision was made to have a full service dog rather than a single purpose dog. Bones was put into training as an apprehension dog, but he did not make it in this training so he was eventually given to Osceola county for work there as a single purpose dog.

So Forgey was given a full service dog – Garus, a German Shepherd. Garus was 20 months old when Forgey received him. Garus will be 9 this October. When Forgey first got Garus, they started a 400 hour school – teaching obedience, man tracking, scent discrimination, area searches, aerial searches, apprehension and hand and voice. Garus was then certified for case work. He is evaluated by two outside sources before certification. And when the dog is tested, the handler is tested. There is only one handler per dog. No one works with the dog but the assigned handler. After “graduation” the dog gets a break from school before going back and completing the 160 hour coursework in human remains detection. This was the same course Forgery had done with Bones, but Garus’s final trained alert is a “down” instead of a “sit”.

Forgery testifies that as an aid to training, Garus has never had a bone – not a regular meat bone or rawhide bone, because Forgey doesn’t want the dog to learn that bones are for chewing. Forgery also trains Garus around ham, meat, dumpsters, pizza, decomposing animals, horse rings – all kinds of distractions to ensure that the dog focuses on the scent he is trained for. The dog is also exposed to many different environments, like the fireman’s mock buildings. Forgey also exposed the dog to cars, training fields, concrete environments.

During training Forgey generally knows where the hidden scent is, but there are special training scenarios where the dog is tested along with the handler and neither one knows where the scent is. This is to avoid :bias” or “cuing” on the part of the handler that might create a false alert.

Garus underwent an evaluation within the department initially. And was then certified to do multi purpose jobs – then Garus went to a cadaver school hosted by an independent entity in Sarasota.

The state then has Forgery identify all the awards and certifications that he and Garus have been awarded. The defense has a problem with the records, and voir dire’s the witness.

Baez asks if Forgey is the keeper of these records – so that he can bring them to court and show the judge and show the jury that he and the dog are trained. The witness agrees.

Baez says that the records are inadmissible. The judge admits them anyway.

Burdick then goes through a training log to show how they are filled out and what information is contained in each one – where the dog was searching, where the training aid was located, whether or not the dog found the target, the total number of misses and false alerts, the environmental conditions (raining, temperature), and what kind of targets were used.

Burdick then goes through some photos of Forgey and Garus training at the school in Sarasota in both 2005 and 2006. The 2006 school was an advanced training course. The 2006 class taught the canines with more advanced distractions and harder searches in more advanced locations and conditions.

In both schools Garus had 4 false alerts and 2 misses. In a haunted house Garus missed 2 napkins with drops of blood on them – but he found 13 other items in the haunted house. Forgey said that the false alerts were due to doing 31 searches that day and the false alerts were due to him being bored and fatigued.

In a real world situation, a dog would never do 31 searches in one day.

Quarterly Garus and Forgey are evaluated by supervisors and monthly he is required to do maintenance training in 2 specialties.

Burdick asks if Garus has ever been trained using a situation where a body has been removed and Garus has to alert on the residual odor left behind. Forgey says that he has trained Garus in this scenario.

Since 2001 Forgey has received over 200 real world calls and ran almost 500 training scenarios. Garus is also a full service dog, and undergoes a lot of training. When Forgey is working, the dog is working.

Burdick then goes through Garus’s history – in 2005, Forgey had no real world calls. In 2006, Forgey had 6 real world calls, and one alert – that was a find – a dead body was found. In 2007, Forgey had 9 real world cadaver searches – no alerts. In 2008 Forgey had 71 cadaver searches with 3 alerts. 1 was a find – a mandible.
After July of 2008 Forgey had hundreds of tips and calls on this particular case. That’s why his search count went form 9 the year before to 71 this year. In a couple of the calls that they received, Fogery found areas that looked like graves. Garus alerted to neither of them, but they were dug anyway. Nothing was found.

Forgey had 12 real world calls in 2009 with one alert. That was a find. Garus found a drowning victim. In 2010 Forgey had 11 calls and no alerts.

Garus is currently retired. His last call was September of 2010 – he went down on a call.

Burdick then shows a video of Garus finding a dead body near a pond in 2006. But not before Baez stands and makes another motion that he feels is “A matter of law not a matter of facts”. He wants to stop the madness before it goes any further. The judge blows him off again.

Forgey explains the video, and how Garus performed in the video and what the conditions were.

Burdick then asks Forgey about his prior dog, Bone, and the find that this dog had made in real world calls. Forgey says that Bones had 4 finds in 11 months.

On July 17th 2008, Forgey was called to assist in this case. He responded to the forensics bay where Casey Anthony’s car was being held. To prepare for different jobs and functions, Forgey uses different tools and implements to alert the dog as to what he wants him to do. Since this was cadaver work, Forgey put Garus’s special collar on him and gave Garus the command to search. Forgey was given general information about the case, and was told there was a vehicle they wanted him to look at.

Because of Forgey’s training with the dog, he has been exposed to the smell of human decomposition. When he got to the bay, he could smell a strong odor. He asked the unit to move the car out of the bay – because there was biowaste in the bay. They moved the car to the parking lot, in the open air, to remove it from the biohazards in the bay.

Forgey then had Garus sweep the car next to the Sunfire, he did not alert on this car. He then swept the Sunfire with the doors closed. Garus alerted on the trunk area on this first pass, so Forgey had the tech crack open the driver’s door slightly for the next pass around the vehicle. When Garus again passed the driver’s door, he jumped into the car, in between the driver and passenger’s seat, and alerted towards the trunk area in the back seat.

Forgey continued to move so he wouldn’t create a false alert, and indicated for the tech to open the trunk. Garus then got out of the car and continued to walk around the car. When he got to the now cracked open trunk, Garus jumped up with his front paws in the trunk and gave an alert. Forgey was overwhelmed with the smell, and continued to walk around the car. Garus came out of the trunk, got to the right rear passenger tail light area, and then gave his Final Trained Alert, which was to lay down.

Forgey loaded the dog back into his vehicle and left the area. The next day Forgey and Garus went to the Anthony’s home address to do a sweep of the back yard. The detectives had a couple of specific area they wanted Forgey to look at, so upon arriving, Forgey went to see these areas. He then brought Garus to the backyard, off-lead, and gave Garus the command to search. Garus did not give an alert at the detective’s first area of concern. Garus did give an alert and a Final Trained Alert in the South East corner of the yard, which was near a playhouse. Forgey then removed Garus from the back yard and suggested to the detectives that they have another cadaver dog, Bones, come and search the area.
When Bones and his handler arrive, Forgey briefed her on what he wanted her to do, and the area of concern, and told her what he had done in the backyard, but not that Garus had alerted or where. He observed the sweep with Bones, but did not conduct it.

Cross examination – Baez points out that the Anthony backyard is not very big – there’s not an lot of grass area. Especially given the pool, playhouse and lanai area. Baez asks Forgey about Garus’s experience with residual odors that Forgey has testified about on direct. He had given 2 examples of bodies being removed and Garus alerting on the scent at a later time – one after 10 hours and one after 10 days. Baez asks if Forgey has had an opportunity to train with Garus on residual odors after 30 days. Forgey says he has finds that are older than 30 days – but Baez wants to know specifically about residual odors. The two residual cases in training that Garus had were in 2005and 2007.

When Forgey went to see the car Forgey had been told that this was the suspect’s car. Forgey brought the car outside of the bay it was because there was trash in there. Baez asks if Forgey is familiar with the forensics bay – Forgey says he doesn’t work there. Baez then asks if it was so that he did a “line-up” of the car. He first swept a car that was not involved – and then the suspect car. Forgey says yes.

Baez asks why he didn’t videotape this sweep of the car – Forgey says if he had known where they would be today he would have – but it’s not a common practice to video the searches. Baez brings out a handbook that the trainer Forgey studied under wrote. The handbook says to video tape the searches.

Baez says “You knew there was no body in the car – so whatever you did would be scrutinized later – but you still chose not to video tape the search.” Forgey says it isn’t in his procedures to video the searches.”

Baez asks about the dog training -and asks if it is generally true that it’s just Forgey and the dog there when they train. Forgey says “most of the time” – and Baez asks if the training logs are basically just whatever Forgey writes there. And this is not blind testing – the handler knows where the target is – the dog doesn’t, but the handler knows. And generally the evaluations are not blind searches, either. And part of what the dog gets as a reward is handler praise – and that is part of the motivation during the searches.

Baez asks about the alert in the Anthony’s yard. After Garus’s alert, the other dog handler was called, and then CSI was called – and they started to dig and search for remains in the yard. Forgey says they didn’t actually dig – they scraped the surface – but Forgey wasn’t present. And CSI found nothing – and the next day Garus came again, and after they scraped and Garus came back – he got no alerts.

Baez points out Forgey wrote a police report when the dog alerted, but didn’t write one when the dog didn’t alert. And on Forgey’s other “real world searches” – he has police reports for the hits but not for the “no alerts”. Baez points out that Forgey has no idea if evidence was later found at those areas where his dog showed ”no alert”.

In December 2008 Forgey was sent to the Suburban Drive area where Caylee was found. When Forgey was deployed there, he knew a body had been found – he was looking for missing bones. And Garus did not find any bones there. In fact, Garus did not alert at all, when Forgey knew that Caylee’s remains had been found there. Forgey says that yes, the dog was alerting and trying to get to the place where the body had been found, but Forgey wasn’t allowing him to get there. That’s not what he was there for – he was there to find other evidence, not to have the dog alert him to where the body had been. Forgey physically kept the dog from that area.
Baez asks about his prior depositional statement. Baez tries to impeach him with that statement, but as Baez reads it, it seems to confirm what the witness testified to – that Garus showed interest, changed behavior, but never gave his Final Trained Alert. Baez argues with the witness about “but your dog didn’t alert?” “Because I didn’t allow him to alert”, for a few minutes, and Baez kind of comes off as a jackass – saying things like “But you were there to find human remains!” And the witness answering “The remains had been found I was looking for what they didn’t find – I wouldn’t let my dog go to the exact place where the remains were found” and Baez retorting “You didn’t let your dog find human remains!!??” Just real jackassy comments.

On re-direct, Burdick asks the witness if he’s aware that his work is scrutinized every day – by the department, by his evaluators and by the public. The witness says yes, he’s aware of that. Burdick asks how many “real world” calls Forgey has gone on over the years with all of his dogs. The answer is over 3,000. Very few of those have been taped.

After Forgey went back to the Anthony home the second time and the dog didn’t alert – Forgey believes that whatever the dog was alerting to was on the surface and the scraping moved it or diminished it.

Burdick asks what a police report would say if he wrote one for a “no alert”, and Forgey says :it would say nothing – he would have nothing to report.

Burdick asks if the dog alerts to trash – and Forgey says no. The dog also doesn’t alert to Velveeta cheese, or Stouffer’s Chicken Packages, or Empty Copenhagen tins or empty soda cans.

Re-Cross – Baez asks about the witnesses belief about why the dog didn’t alert the second day. He says that the Officer doesn’t really know why the dog alerted – then didn’t. The witness can’t know if the dog lost the sent, or it was a false alert, or if there really was a body there.

Forgey says he can only guess from experience. Baez asks if this speculation is part of his testimony. The witness says “Speculation??? I testified that the dog alerted, then they scraped and then the dog didn’t alert.” Baez says that since the officer doesn’t know why the dog didn’t alert – that’s speculation. The officer says that yes, this is an unknown element to him. And Baez tries to extrapolate that to all the officers “alerts” with the dog – and Forgey says that in all other cases besides this case that when the dog alerted, he had a find. Baez quickly backtracks and says “Well, we’re talking about this case, let’s talk about this case” as if he wasn’t the one who tried to drag all the other cases into it to begin with. Baez says that in this case, the officer is speculating – and he’s speculating about the car, too. The witness says :Well, I believe the doctor has already testified that…” And Baez cuts him off. Baez asks if he saw anything in the trunk and the witness says no, but he smelled it – clear as day – he may not have seen anything – but he smelled it. Baez says “Let me make myself clear – when you don’t have remains found, and your dog alerts in that area – you are speculating It’s either that there was never any body there or there are residuals scents.” The witness says “As to the backyard, yes. As to the car, I smelled it clear as day.” Baez says “You’ve never been called out to smell things without your dog, have you?” (HA! That was funny, Baez.) The witness says no, but before he was a dog handler he worked the road and was called to many crime scenes with deceased bodies.

The Deputy is excused.

And so is the jury – with the promise of an Italian dinner as well as a steak dinner.

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13 Responses to “What’s that, Garus?? Timmy is in the well?!?”

  1. V. said

    You know what I get from the trash? That someone doesn’t recycle. DEATH!

    • I hear ya – but I don’t recycle, either (for shame!!) But our town doesn’t offer recycling. Well, I do recycle soda cans and bottles – only because we get a deposit back on those.

      • Valerie said

        We have recycling lol They do plastics 1s and 2s and glass, cardboard and tin cans. I wish they did all the plastic though!

  2. Baez seems to the Colombo of lawyers and he’s trying to cast reasonable doubt out there and hook one juror and that’s all it takes.

    • I think Colombo was smarter than Baez. I mean, Colombo made you think he didn’t know what he was doing, when he really did. I tend to think that Baez *really* doesn’t know what he’s doing. I think that if Casey gets a “not guilty” verdict it’s going to be in spite of Baez, not because of him.

  3. I’ve been a juror once. It was a child sexual abuse trial.
    The teenager ran away from home claiming her dad was banging her all the time.

    He had no evidence of bruises on his body or being stabbed by a pen ala ‘Goodfellas’.

    It was a one day trial and the prosecutor was a total mutt head. It was so boring that I almost fell asleep.

    All the defense did was to put the teenager on the stand and she went ape shit running off at the mouth about everything and anything.

    The case went to the jury at 4:40 pm and within 15 minutes we took votes for not guilty and went to inform the bailiff.

    No Baliff, they all went to dinner, the judge the lawyers and all the county employees. We were locked in.

    We all wanted to go home as Park county Colorado is a big county and I had an 80 mile trip home to look forward to.

    Finally they returned fed and happy and the foreman read the verdict. Think they would bring some deserts for us in a doggie bag? No.

    I got home at midnight 30. Driving at night in the Colorado high country means you have to look out for deer, elk and bears possibly being on the highway.

    As a juror, you lose rights. Just between you me and the lamp post I don’t want to lose those rights. I don’t ever want to be a juror again as I and the other 11 people there just wanted to get out of that room we were trapped in and get back to the comfort of our home.

    I am a lousy juror. Who can understand what reasonable doubt vs the preponderance of evidence.
    In that area I am black and white, I can’t find any gray area.

    In this case Casey has dirty hands and she is guilty. Fry her and let everyone go home.

  4. Chico said

    Voting in your poll, drinking my morning coffee from my Made in Malone mug. How that for a trip down memory lane?

  5. V. said

    I still come back to Casey lying about Caylee being with her but “unavailable” for a month, until Cindy forced her to ‘fess up that Caylee had been missing the entire time. If Cindy hadn’t wanted to see Caylee, would Casey have ever listed Caylee as missing? Would Caylee’s bones even be identified?

    I’m tipping. If it were an accident, why NOT call 911? Why NOT tell her parents? Why the cover-up? Why dump her child’s body? Why abandon the car?

    • Yeah, I know what you mean, V. That’s always been my “tipping the scales” thing,too. I think the defense wants everyone to believe that the reason Casey didn’t report anything was because of George and this incredible power he had over Casey because of the childhood sexual abuse, and that might be a valid and believable defense if the dynamics were different. If Casey was some shrinking violet when it came to her mother and father, and Casey was known to be afraid of them or if they were seen to have some control over her, one could belive that this “chuildhood abuse” thing played a part in Casey’s life. But those jailhouse video tapes show the complete opposite of that scenario. Casey seems to be, in those conversations, the one with the power. George and Cindy seem to be deferring to Casey, and Casey seems to be the one in control – even though she is the one in jail. I don’t think “George influienced Casey’s decision not to report” is going to fly with those jailhouse conversations in the jurors minds.

      • V. said

        I don’t understand why George would want Caylee dead…is this supposed to be something to do with the alleged sexual abuse?

  6. E said

    It could be that as was noted before that Casey found George holding Caylee hurt or already dead. She could have became angry and just taken her from George and split, not knowing what to do. She lives second to second. And if she was abused Caylee would have been the only person in the world that she thought loved her. And now she was lost. Her future destroyed. And she projected that pain and anger onto George and his “fuc*ing gas cans”.
    The critical point of reporting the death had passed. The lack of foresight about the accident had not permitted this girl that lived minute to minute to opportunity to reflect upon the consequences of her actions due to her inability to control the hidden emotions that came pouring out.

    After Caylee died Casey went into a fantasyland of denial as if Caylee were still alive. Putting her doll in her place in the car seat. Being the caretaker that she is (cooking, cleaning, washing, looking out for the shot girls, plugging in the computers for the attorneys, posing for pictures at the club so her boyfriend could have pictures of girls for his promotional startup business, taking it upon herself to show people she just met around town, saying she felt compelled to take care of Zanny after she got in the accident in Tampa) Casey focused all of her attentions on the new friends in her life to drown out the pain she was carrying. She couldn’t go back to the house to stay like she had in the past because she hated her father more than she ever had. Plus there was no real reason for her to go back there now. She would not really be wanted. She was a means to Caylee for her parents. Caylee was the one they adored, their hope. Casey was a “whore” and a failure in their eyes. They expected this kind of behavior from her and allowed it. Why else would Casey tell her mother that her and Caylee could not come home because they were staying with a wealthy suitor in an Orlando hotel and then days later say they were in Jacksonville at the suitor’s condo? So she continued with the stories to postpone the eventuality of reality and being told what a failure she was and suffering even more guilt. This was a shame based family. She’d been lying all her life to invent a world that was brighter than the real one she was living in. What difference did it make if she did not tell where Caylee was? Caylee was dead. She was blaming herself too, because ultimately no matter what the cause she knew she was to blame and the one that suffered the greatest loss. And to shame herself she was punishing herself. Her guilt was as real as if she had actually murdered Caylee.

    Sexual abuse had ruined Casey’s life and she knew it, but she felt powerless and scarred and unable to change. You have to think on a primal and instinctual level. She had no consideration for the law. Especially not now. She was confused. She wasn’t even paying attention to her gas gauge. If she really wanted to discard or throw away the body why not do it in a swamp or someplace less accessible? The burial was a ritualistic burial. A place she knew before her life was shattered. Where she buried pets that also had loved her unconditionally. It was a safe place to her. She was all alone in the world now and without anyone that truly loved her (if she even knew what that meant) or that she really loved. Driving around till she ran out of gas. Running to stand still. She was trying to protect the only person she had ever really loved in her life and who she felt had ever truly loved her unconditionally. Thus the heart shaped sticker. She was in no state of mind to consider future possibilities such as wild animals. The emotions were too overwhelming. Caylee was the only thing that was real in her life. Caylee was her future, and her attempt to redeem herself. And now that she was gone she could not believe it., she would always be worthless. The tattoo could have been a celebration of Caylee’s beautiful life.

    Caylee could have seen her actions as not being lies. If a robber would ask you where your most valued possession was, would it be a lie to mislead him as to where it was? May not a singular necessity supersede the common rule of veracity?

    “For the sin of a man who tells a lie to help another is not so heinous as that of the man who tells a lie to injure another; and the man who by his lying puts a traveler on the wrong road does not do so much harm as the man who by false or misleading representations distorts the whole course of life.” St. Augustine, from “On Lying”

    Caylee was already dead in Casey’s eyes. Lying about her whereabouts was of no real consequence. What gave anyone else the right to her body? Was this a morally acceptable, but unlawful, lie considering the above scenario? Lying is a choice. How do you justify limiting that choice when the truth would not change the circumstances (bring Caylee back to life) or actually hurt anyone? It’s just emotionally upsetting. The path had been taken until it ws clear to Casey that no one would believe her. But what about the other 23 children less than 5 years old that died from homicides in 2009 alone in the State of Florida? Who is crying for them? It seems to me that Casey is being punished for misleading people who volunteered to help her? Ask the Anthony’s if they have really been hurt by signing a $2 million deal to do a Lifetime movie and by patenting Caylee’s name.

    Haven’t you ever known anyone that was permanently scared by abuse? And it need not be just sexual abuse. Emotional abuse can have the same effect on some. I’ve known both male and female friends that were sexually abused while young and they’re scatterbrained. They’ll refuse to take care of themselves because they think they are losers and worthless. And they are liars and put on a front to hide how they really feel. Casey shows all the signs of an unfortunate childhood: The path of promiscuity taken; the habitual lying; the inability or relunctance to hold a job; the lack of real emotions and the fear to display them; confusion; inability to prioritize (running out of gas); overly concerned with her appearance; low self-esteem – “the dumbest person and worst mother”; dating men that don’t really care for her – ever notice that none ever really looks over to her in the courtroom, even those who say they loved her; Lazarro tried to change the topic real quick when she brought up abuse; a caretaker personality that substitutes others concerns for her own; and the need to be the center of attention, to keep her mind busy and active in order to keep the darkness away. She’s a 21st century version of An American Tradegy.

    • V. said

      You excuse and excuse and excuse, and yet strangely, Casey is the one on trial and not George. What’s that all about?

      I know pathological liars and I know people who have been abused, and the overlap is not as large as you presume. Casey’s claim of being abused reeks of the odor of the rest of her lies: lies about a nanny, lies about her work, imaginary friends and places. Why is her 11th hour claim of abuse any more reasonable than her claim that she worked at Universal Studios, or her claim that Caylee was sleeping when Caylee had been dead for weeks?

      Casey is a classical Narcissist. You do a disservice to every person who has suffered through grievous physical, sexual, and/or emotional abuse: Casey murdered Caylee because Caylee was inconvenient, and it never occurred to Casey that other people might give a damn about her daughter.

      • E said

        That’s a straw man argument to imply that she is guilty merely because she is on trial.

        I would like to know exactly how you think I am doing a disservice to everyone that has suffered through abuse by standing up for one that shows all of the signs of being abused, as mentioned in the previous post. Or is that just a character assassination attempt to discredit my credibility? I believe what you and the prosecution is doing is blaming the victim. The prosecution does not want the elephant in the room brought up because it might put things in perspective. That is why Ashton got so heated on the 16th when the subject was broached. It’s why one of the questions they asked the jurors was whether they knew anyone that had been sexually abused. What you call excuses are explanations for the behavior of one that shows all the signs of having been abused. The adaptations and normal reactions to an abnormal situation.

        I did not rely upon her claim of being abused to form my opinion. I formed it based upon her reported actions, her lying, her need for imaginary friends (which are just another lie), and for all of her other attributes as stated in the previous post, and also upon my observations of her. They are all in line with those of an abused person. The book, Recovering from Sexual Abuse, Addictions, and Compulsive Behaviors: “Numb” Survivors, by Sandra Knauer, herself a sexual abuse survivor, will explain it more clearly than I can. You can read potions of it on Amazon.

        Numb survivors. That is in the title because it is a common statement from survivors that they have no real feelings. None that they own themselves. That is why she has that blank expression on her face. A common trait is to portray themselves as they think others would want them to be. That is why everyone describes her the same, “nice, caring, joyful, happy, exuberant, social, talkative, friendly, upbeat, outgoing”, all of the time. As for her 11th hour claim, when was it supposed to be made? Do you think she would have been released from jail if she had told them, “I was sexually abused.”? Keeping it silent was also was a good strategical move on Baez’s part. Making that unknown claim at the beginning of the trial served to help create a hostile attitude on George’s part toward Baez, and in so doing his demeanor would help to discredit his testimony.

        I have know abused women who have had to give up all of their children due to their inability to take care of them on their own. They did not kill them. Casey had it made. Her parents were coddling her and paying for almost all of Caylee’s expenses. Everyone testified that Casey and Caylee both loved each other. As far as the claim that she killed Caylee to party, that is an unsupported claim. They did not introduce any evidence or testimony from anyone to support that claim. The only support for that claim is the inference from the prosecution in their opening statements. Just like they have no evidence to support the claim that Casey Anthony bought, procured, made, or used any chloroform. Where did she make it, when, how did she obtain the supplies? None of those questions have been answered. How did the tape remain stuck to the mandible as Dr. Utz testified it did. He said he had to cut the fabric of the tape away from the mandible in order to remove the tape from the mandible. How did the tape get stuck on the mandible if the tape was on the skin, and the skin and tissue below it were sloughed off in the decomposition process? The tape would have fallen away from the skull.

        And she was partying long before Caylee disappeared. The prosecution went back less than a month before Caylee’s disappearance to give us a background picture of how she was “partying”. Remember that the grandparents did not want Caylee born. They wanted an abortion. Do you really think that Casey turned 22 and decided that she wanted to party the rest of her life? Why didn’t she kill Caylee sooner. Caylee would have been preventing her from partying then too.

        The real cause of this in my opinion was the Anthony’s financial struggle. Look at their financial situation. Prior to the disappearance of Caylee the Anthony’s were experiencing financial difficulties, which were exacerbated by Casey’s unapproved use of their funds. The Anthony’s home was put in foreclosure in February 2010, they had not made a payment since June 2009 and had $7,000 in past due payments. They bought the house for $91,000 in 1989, and the foreclosure documents show that they owed over $121,000 on the home in February 2010. In 21 years the principal on their mortgage increased $30,000. So they were having money problems long before May 2009. Their mortgage payment was $785.82 a month. They had not paid any principal on the mortgage in 21 years. They refinanced the four-bedroom home in 2005 and agreed to pay $121,180. Court documents show that the lender claims the couple owed about $121,000 in February 2010. So from the 2005 refinancing, up until June 2009, they paid a total $180 on the $121,180 principal. They were far behind in their car payments to the tune of $20,000. They were definitely in the hole in June 2008.

        And Casey and Caylee were not making matters any better. Wouldn’t you have liked to have been a fly on the wall in the Anthony’s bedroom after that violent fight on the night of June 15, 2008 to hear how Cindy was complaining to George. He wasn’t home when the argument occurred. How would George react? He’s not a very strong man. In fact he seems like he considers himself a victim to me. “Sir, you’re trying to entrap me.” and “If you show me a little respect you’ll get a little respect in return.” both from his May 26, 2011 testimony. He’s older and views himself as the man of the family. The provider. The one responsible for the financial condition they were in because he wanted to move to Orlando to work at Disneyworld with all the fantasy characters. (Where, by the way, there are a lot of little kids.) Casey probably got her real temporary job there because George encouraged her to. Why do you think she was able to continue with the lie of working on the Disney property for two (2) years? Fantasy is part of this family. And now he was being blamed for their financial situation, if not directly then indirectly. George was also being blamed for Cindy’s father’s well being at the nursing home, since Casey was stealing money because George could not provide enough money for her. If not being blamed directly by Cindy then indirectly by her sister’s stirring of the emotional pot. This is what set Cindy off. Why is it that George quit the police force (a job with a pension and good benefits) to work at his father’s car dealership on a commission? I thought he was a detective, not a cop on the beat, so the argument that he was going to be hit by a stray bullet doesn’t wash. What is your general feeling about car dealers/ salesmen? Why did he then decide to leave his father’s car business to start up his own car business to compete against his father? I don’t think George got along with his father very well. His father defeating him humiliated him, so he moved his family to Orlando with expectations of working at Disneyland. But he was failing financially and hearing about it.

        George just couldn’t take the stress anymore. It was now too much. He was thinking of himself as a failure. So on the 16th he took Caylee out for a swim. He transferred all of his pent up frustrations onto Caylee. In his mind at that moment he could have considered Caylee to be Casey. And he either drowned her or was attempted to drown her to alleviate his financial burdens, stress, and sense of failure. Casey could have been on the computer. He could have done it and then left for work without Casey’s knowledge. Casey blamed him (“your fuc*ing gas cans”) and grabbed Caylee. This is a family built around blame and shame. And if you have read about abuse, you know that it is often inter-generational, passed along kinda like genes. And the main means to keep it a secret is by threatening the victim that if they tell anyone or report it, either they or someone dear to them will be killed. Be it their mother, their siblings, their child, their pet(s), or themselves. Just like rapists do. George would have relied on his old admonitions about telling and told Casey that, “If you tell I’ll kill you and your mother. Do not go to the police either. We’ll deal with this later. I’ll tell you what needs to be done. Caylee is in the pool.” And he could have done this in a phone call. He called Casey’s cell phone at 3:04 PM on the 16th and the conversation only lasted 26 seconds. That about how long it would take to say the above and hang up. Why shouldn’t she believe him, he had just killed or attempted to kill her daughter. She could have became angry or confused and just taken Caylee from George and split, not knowing what to do. This can be a characteristic of persons that have been abused. They can shut down in crisis situations or go into a type of shock and withdraw from reality. Operate in a fog. And children do not have to die immediately after being submerged in water. They can die hours later. But she couldn’t go to the hospital either because that would require telling how it happened and endangering her mother or herself.

        Casey and Caylee did not leave the house at 1230 PM on the 16th as George testified too. There was high user activity on the HP Desktop between 1:00 to 3:00 PM. Casey’s cell phone called Tony L’s cell phone at 12:53 PM. At 2:31 PM the Zenaida MySpace page was set up, including a picture of Dora the Explorer, Caylee favorite cartoon character. At 2:52 PM Jesse G. called Casey’s cell phone and talked for 660 seconds. Then there was no user activity on either the desktop of the laptop from 3:00 PM to 11:00 PM. At 3:04 PM George called Casey cell phone from his cell phone, the call lasted 26 seconds. At 4:10:41 Casey’s cell phone called George’s work phone. Then from 4:11:25 to 4:13:29 Casey’s cell phone called Cindy’s cell phone four (4) times. Then at 4:14:28 Casey’s cell phone called George’s work phone. None of these calls were answered. See George lied. He USED to be a cop a long time ago, before computers and cell phones used to be routinely used. And in fabricating his story he forgot about how cell phones and computers can be used to show where a person was at specific times. He killed Caylee to alleviate his mounting financial burdens.

        In one study, Child Murder by Parents: A Psychiatric Review of Filicide, Resnick 1969, it was found that 42% of mothers that kill their children do so as a part of their own suicide. Accidental filicide, where the child was killed usually as a result of fatal battered child syndrome, was the cause in only 7% of the maternal filicides, but in 23% of the paternal filicides. In 11% of the maternal filicide killings and 19% of the paternal filicides the murders were committed because the child was unwanted. For the paternal filicides fathers are more likely to kill when there is doubt about paternity and when the progeny is viewed as a financial burden and impediment to their career. It is clear that Caylee was a financial burden on the Anthony’s as was their daughter, and for that reason Caylee was unwanted to George at the moment of his act. And what is really interesting is that after Casey was released from jail on bond in August 2008 she demanded that George leave the house, and her mother told him to do so. Then subsequent to this George attempted suicide. This is in line with the severe depression and suicidal tendencies that is found in those people that commit filicides. However Casey did not express these as she had to undergo psychiatric examinations prior to being released on bond.

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