Monday was the ten year anniversary of Casey Anthony controversially being found not guilty of the murder of her two year-old daughter Caylee. This sent shockwaves through the United States, as many Americans were convinced that Anthony did indeed kill her little girl.
To mark the ten year anniversary of the verdict being read, a male juror who preferred not to be identified has come forward to say that the case “haunts” him to this day, and that he wishes things had gone differently.
“I remember thinking, ‘holy s—, this is insane,'” he told People Magazine of the first day of the trial. “By the time both sides had finished their statements, I had no idea what to believe. We weren’t allowed to talk about it with each other, so we were making small talk at dinner, but there was this big unspoken cloud over us based on what we had just heard.”
“We all sat around that night, and it was killing us not to talk,” he added. “We just gave each other these long looks. But no one said a word.”
While prosecutors argued that Anthony had used chloroform to kill her daughter, defense attorney Jose Baez presented a different theory.
“Caylee was never missing,” Baez said during the trial. “On June 16, 2008, she drowned in the family swimming pool. It was a horrible tragedy. A common tragedy.”
This theory resonated with the male juror who spoke out this week.
“It was plausible to me,” he said of the drowning argument. “And I remember thinking, ‘Well, that would explain a hell of a lot.'”
By the time opening statements ended, the juror knew that he was in for a long trial.
“They had both given their theories, and now they were going to have to prove them,” he recalled. “I knew that I was going to be there in that courtroom for most of the summer.”
The trial lasted two months, with the jury being sequestered in a hotel the entire time. In the end, the jury acquitted Anthony of all the serious charges.
“Both sides told us that the prosecution had to prove their case beyond a reasonable doubt, and after all was finished, I had reasonable doubts,” said the juror. “I think we all did.”
These days, however, the juror feels differently.
“As time has gone by and I’ve learned more, I think maybe I would have come up with a different verdict,” said the juror, who has said that the case still “haunts” him. “But at the time, based on what I knew, and what they told me, I felt that my doubts were reasonable.”
As for what the juror would say if he ever bumped into Anthony on the street, he said, “I wouldn’t say a word. I’d cross over to the other side of the street. I’ve got nothing to say to her.”