'Judgment With Ashleigh Banfield' Episode 1 Preview: A look at Casey Anthony trial that enraged the country
More than 10 years ago, the disappearance and death of toddler Caylee Anthony shocked the nation. Caylee was just two years old when she was reported missing by her grandmother, Cindy Anthony, in July 2008. She had been missing for 31 days. In December 2008, her remains were found with a blanket inside a laundry bag in a wooded area near the Anthony family's house.
The prime suspect in the death of Caylee Anthony was her mother, Casey Anthony, whose trial became the one that defined real-life courtroom drama in that decade, especially when it came to the shocking verdict. Millions of Americans watched Casey's trial as they prayed for justice for the two-year-old child. Inconsistencies in Casey's statements were the main reasons for her being a prime suspect. Casey told the police that Caylee was with a sitter named Zenaida Gonzalez or "Zanny", but that story turned out to be made-up. When police took Casey to Universal Studios, where she claimed she worked, to investigate, they learned she had lied about having a job there after she admitted that she had been fired years ago. Casey was arrested for obstruction of a criminal investigation, giving false statements to law enforcement and child neglect on July 16, 2008
Two years later at the trial, the prosecution alleged that Casey used chloroform on her daughter and suffocated her by putting duct tape over the little girl's mouth and nose. Casey's defense team presented a different theory and argued that Caylee had died by accidentally drowning in the family pool and that Casey’s father George had disposed of her body. They also claimed that George Anthony sexually abused Casey and that the prosecution’s evidence was all circumstantial.
The jury found Casey not guilty of first-degree murder, aggravated child abuse and aggravated manslaughter of a child in July 2011. However, she was found guilty of the misdemeanors she was charged with on July 16, 2008, and with time served, she was a free woman a few days after the jury's verdict.
A new series from Court TV, 'Judgment with Ashleigh Banfield' will give a deeper insight into the country's most provocative and intriguing trials and cases of all time. Hosted by Ashleigh Banfield, Court TV alum and former CNN and MSNBC legal analyst, the series will feature brand new interviews and exclusive never-before-seen reveals. The series premieres this Sunday and the first trial featured is Casey's. Banfield covered the trial while living in Orlando and recalls being perturbed by the jury selection and the voir dire. People would line up to witness the high-profile trial that ended disappointingly for those who believed that Casey was guilty.
Today, Casey lives in South Florida and it is known that she is living with the lead private investigator on her defense team, Patrick McKenna, according to Associated Press. She also works for him, doing online social media searches and other investigative work. McKenna was also the lead investigator for OJ Simpson when he was accused of killing his wife and was acquitted.
'Judgment With Ashleigh Banfield' will premiere on Court TV on Sunday, September 13, at 8/7c.