Casey Anthony juror Jennifer Ford said today that she and the other jurors
cried and were “sick to our stomachs” after voting to acquit Casey Anthony of charges that she killed her 2-year-old
“I did not say she was innocent,” said Ford, who had previously only been
identified as juror number 3. “I just said there was not enough evidence. If you
cannot prove what the crime was, you cannot determine what the punishment should
The jury’s jaw dropping not guilty verdict shocked court observers, but it
was also a difficult moment for the panel, Ford said in an exclusive interview
with ABC News. No one from the jury was willing to come out and talk to the
media in the hours after the verdict.
“Everyone wonders why we didn’t speak to the media right away,” Ford said.
“It was because we were sick to our stomach to get that verdict. We were crying
and not just the women. It was emotional and we weren’t ready. We wanted to do
it with integrity and not contribute to the sensationalism of the trial.”
Instead of murder, Casey Anthony, 25, was found guilty of four counts of
lying to law enforcement and could be released from jail as early as Thursday.
Ford praised the jurors.
“They picked a great bunch of people, such high integrity. And there was high
morale,” she said. “We all joked. We are like a big group of cousins.”
Casey Anthony Prosecutor: ‘All Came Down to Cause of Death’
Earlier today, the prosecutor and an alternate juror agreed on why the jury
had refused to convict Anthony: They couldn’t prove how little Caylee Anthony
“It all came down to the evidence,” said Florida state attorney Jeff Ashton
on “The View.” “I think ultimately it all came down to — at least from what the
one alternate said — it came down to the cause of death.”
Russell Huekler, one of five alternate jurors who were present for all the
testimony and sequestered along with the 12 other jurors, said today that he
would have delivered the same verdict and that he was shocked by the public
outrage over the trial’s outcome.
“The prosecution failed to prove their case and there was reasonable doubt.
Again, they didn’t show us how Caylee died. They didn’t show us a motive. I’m
sorry people feel that way. … These were 17 total jurors. They really listened
to this case and kept an open mind,” Huekler said.
Prosecution was hampered by the fact that Caylee Anthony’s body wasn’t
discovered until six months after she disappeared. She was found lying in a
swampy, wooded area. Her body was so badly decomposed that the autopsy could not
determine a cause of death and stated only that she was a victim of homicide by
Top 9 Moments: Casey Anthony Trial
“I don’t think it was the lack of DNA” connecting Casey Anthony to her
daughter’s death that undermined the case, Ashton said. “It was the cause of
Ashton said that he and his team felt they put on a good case.
“We were pretty shocked” at the verdict, he said. “We put on everything that
an investigation, a really thorough investigation over three years, produced.
That’s the way it goes. I think I mouthed ‘Wow’ five times.”
One of the most powerful pieces of evidence, he said, was the photo of
Caylee’s decomposed skull with the pieces of duct tape where her mouth and nose
would have been.
“What I’ve said all along is if a jury looks at that photograph and doesn’t
see it the way I do and doesn’t know how she died, then so be it,” Ashton said.
“I wouldn’t have been involved in this case if I didn’t think she did it.”
Huekler said he believed Caylee’s death was just a horrific accident and that
Casey Anthony was a good mother.
“The first number of witnesses were Casey’s friend and every time that they
said they saw Casey with Caylee, it was a loving relationship and no one
provided evidence to the contrary,” Huekler said.
Huekler said the lack of physical evidence that Caylee was murdered
overwhelmed the circumstantial evidence of Casey Anthony’s many lies and her
hard partying in the 31 days when she knew her daughter was dead but didn’t tell
“Yeah, the behavior was bizarre, but what I took from that is that the family
was very dysfunctional. Because they were so dysfunctional, that was the norm
for them. Casey didn’t just start lying for the first 31 days [after Caylee
disappeared]. She had been lying for the past two years…I felt it was the norm
for her,” Huekler said.
Huekler also said it didn’t bother him that Casey Anthony did not testify in
her own defense.
Mark Lippman, a lawyer for Anthony’s parents, said on “Good Morning America”
today that George and Cindy Anthony were shocked by the verdict, not because
they believe Casey Anthony is guilty, but because they thought the state did a
fantastic job presenting their case.
George and Cindy Anthony have not met with their daughter since her trial
began, but they hope to meet with her and to one day get the truth about what
happened to Caylee.
“There was a slim chance that we were hoping to get some sliver of truth
during this trial and that would have been by testimony from Casey…hopefully one
day she’ll tell her story, but who knows what to believe,” Lippman said.