July 5th, 2011
03:03 PM ET

Toobin: Anthony verdicts a 'historic rejection' of prosecution's case

[Updated at 4:29 p.m. ET] Tuesday's verdicts in the Casey Anthony case - she was acquitted of felonies including murder, and found guilty of four misdemeanor counts - were a "historic rejection of the prosecution’s case," CNN legal analyst Jeffrey Toobin said.

"They sought the death penalty against this woman, and she got convicted of four misdemeanors (of providing false information to a law enforcement officer). This is a historic rejection of the prosecution’s case and an enormous victory – for better or worse – for Casey Anthony,” Toobin said on CNN minutes after the verdicts were read.

“She won and the government lost. ... In most courtrooms in the United States, if you’re convicted of misdemeanors, you do not get a prison sentence. So, the fact that the sentencing is just coming on Thursday - two days from now - suggests that there will not be much to this sentencing," Toobin said.

A lack of evidence pointing to a time of death and a cause of death for Casey's daughter Caylee was key to the acquittal, according to Toobin.

"There was never even a theory of when or how or even why Casey Anthony killed her daughter," he said. "There is certainly a lot of evidence that she behaved terribly, that she lied about all sorts of things. But in terms of murder, much less first-degree murder – intentional murder - there really was a big gap in the evidence, and I certainly expect that when these jurors come to explain their verdict, the failure to prove a time of death or cause of death will be a major, major factor.

"You can’t fault the prosecution for the absence of evidence. The evidence is what it is. But certainly those are the key facts in this acquittal."

Toobin said he believes Anthony, who has been held in a Florida jail since her arrest in 2008, will be released soon.

"If she were convicted of four misdemeanors in New York state, she would never get any jail time. She would get probation. There are almost no prisoners in New York state – which is the state I know best – who are in prison for misdemeanors,” Toobin said.

“Misdemeanors are not prison cases in my experience in New York and most other states, and I would expect that she not get any jail time. ... I don't know why her lawyers didn’t make a motion to get her out today,” he said.

The acquittals, Toobin said, cannot be appealed.

“Tomorrow, Casey Anthony can go on the steps of the courthouse and confess to murder, and under the double jeopardy clause to the Constitution, she could not be tried again," he said. "This case is over. Forever. Done. She will never go on trial again for this case.”


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Filed under: Casey Anthony • Courts • Crime • Florida • Justice
soundoff (818 Responses)
  1. JusticeServed

    Everyone here is basing her guilt on what the media provided over the last 2 years. The state didn't prove she did it. Better to let 10 guilty people go free than to send 1 innocent person to jail. There are way to many innocent people in jail that are getting freed from DNA evidence. These over zelous prosecutors tryng to win at all costs should scare you more than letting this woman go free after a 30 day trial. You will never know the full truth no matter what the verdict was. The prosecutors could have sent the jurors home early on if they didn't like them so don't blame the jurors. Justice was done!

    July 5, 2011 at 3:38 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Rebecca

    Just because 12 people found her not guilty doesn't say whether our justice system works or doesn't work, just shows that there are things in our system that is not working. The prosecutors helped picked this jury, they missed on that end. How to say guilty of lying to police but not guilty of killing her daughter was just ignorant. Because there was no physical evidence she walked. She knows what she did, just as most people do. Her life should be one full of pain and regret, I really hope she isn't made into a mini celebrity. I hope she disappears, and I wish Caylee Marie Anthony had been able to have a jury that cared about the life of that beautiful little girl. Sad day indeed.

    July 5, 2011 at 3:38 pm | Report abuse |
    • Chuck

      Maybe it shows our justice system IS working, by not convicting someone of first degree murder when there is no motive, time of death, or murder weapon established.

      July 5, 2011 at 3:54 pm | Report abuse |
  3. kathleen VS

    Same deal as the OJ trial. The jurors have no understanding of the concept of reasonable doubt. They apparently believe a conviction requires NO doubt. I'd love to know the educational levels of the jurors.

    July 5, 2011 at 3:38 pm | Report abuse |
    • TRH

      Agree 100%. Reasonable is a pretty ineffective standard when the jurors aren't reasonable.

      July 5, 2011 at 3:42 pm | Report abuse |
    • Chuck

      The standard that must be met by the prosecution's evidence in a criminal prosecution: that no other logical explanation can be derived from the facts except that the defendant committed the crime, thereby overcoming the presumption that a person is innocent until proven guilty.

      Without a firm time of death, murder weapon, and motive, I have reasonable doubt.

      July 5, 2011 at 3:58 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Tony

    Wow, who knew in Florida you can kill your child and get away with it. Even Casey was shocked at the verdict. By throwing her family under the bus she may not have a home to go to but that is alright because Casey doesn't have a home anymore either.

    July 5, 2011 at 3:38 pm | Report abuse |
    • Tony

      Oops sorry, I meant Caley doesn't have a home to go to.

      July 5, 2011 at 3:41 pm | Report abuse |
  5. ShutUP

    Time to SHUT UP. This circus has proven that the taxpayers have wasted tons of money.

    July 5, 2011 at 3:38 pm | Report abuse |
  6. WoodsWitch

    A lesson to everyone wanting to get rid of an impediment in their life...
    Make sure the body is not found for as long as possible so there is little forensic evidence left,
    and LIE to everyone about everything.
    Hopefully she will always (and I do mean ALWAYS) be remembered as a mockery of a mother
    who got away with killing her child.
    I can't express how disappointed I am in our judicial system.

    July 5, 2011 at 3:38 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Ludwig

    The son of an Ottawa, Canada Diplomat ran down a homeless person a few years ago, both the driver and his girlfriend lied to police for over eight months. The homeless person died a few days later from the hit and run. What did he get????? 2 years less a day. That means he'll be out in six months. Canada's system is as bad as yours!!!

    July 5, 2011 at 3:38 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Oh NO

    Last time I checked the president was BI-RACIAL.

    July 5, 2011 at 3:39 pm | Report abuse |
    • to Oh NO

      Are you aware that bi-racial means two different races? The president is black, as are both his parents.

      July 5, 2011 at 3:44 pm | Report abuse |
    • jackie

      Uhmmmm Barak Obama had a white mother, Stanley Anne Dunham. Where the hell have you been the last 8 years?

      July 5, 2011 at 3:48 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jennifer

      "Are you aware that bi-racial means two different races? The president is black, as are both his parents." Uh, no. The President's mother was white. He is biracial but identifies as African American. Now back to the actual topic at hand.

      July 5, 2011 at 3:49 pm | Report abuse |
    • Babs

      You, my friend, are a moron.

      July 5, 2011 at 3:50 pm | Report abuse |
    • DOC

      Now Nancy disgrace need to shut up, stupid woman, it was obvious to any rational person there reasonable doubt except HLN dumbos

      July 5, 2011 at 4:25 pm | Report abuse |
    • youngs2992

      She really do needs to shut up!! If someone is saying something that she don't agree with she'll cut'em off and won't let that person finish speaking.She is gonna pop a blood vessel tonight. I got to tune in just to hear what she has to say about the state not proving their case.If I were on the jury, my votes would have been NOT GUILTY!

      July 5, 2011 at 4:42 pm | Report abuse |
    • Eric

      I agree. Nancy Grace is a pig who will do anything to get ignorant people stirred up about cases that have no relation to their lives for her ratings. It is sickening to watch her and listen to her spout off about "poor innocent little baby Caylee"as she refers to her every five seconds, as part of her usual push for mob mentality replacing justice. She's done this before with trials in which the verdict was not guilty and the defendent was subsequently found irrefutably innocent. Yet no apologies or even mention of the update by her show. If only people would get outraged about real issues like war, financial crimes, etc

      July 6, 2011 at 10:26 pm | Report abuse |
    • MsBlunt

      Reasonable Doubt? are you kidding me? Casey Anthony Jury is the stupidest jury of all time.

      July 6, 2011 at 11:26 pm | Report abuse |
    • Weezie

      No, his mother was white!

      July 5, 2011 at 3:51 pm | Report abuse |
    • danshaw4

      You are an idiot. The President's mother was white. That makes him bi-racial.

      July 5, 2011 at 3:53 pm | Report abuse |
    • John Locke

      Sorry but Pres. Obama's momma was white.

      July 5, 2011 at 3:54 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jo

      I know you just goggled that and wished you could take this response back so I'll let you slide

      July 5, 2011 at 3:54 pm | Report abuse |
    • LgMcB

      Um, his mother what white.

      July 5, 2011 at 3:56 pm | Report abuse |
    • Tobi

      his mother is white

      July 5, 2011 at 3:57 pm | Report abuse |
    • Kansas-man

      Actually his mom was white, please get your facts straight next time, ok

      July 5, 2011 at 3:58 pm | Report abuse |
    • Cynthia

      President Obama's mother is white

      July 5, 2011 at 4:00 pm | Report abuse |
    • Dolores

      Wrong, the President is bi-racial (geez, I thought everyone knew this). Black father, white mother.

      July 5, 2011 at 4:03 pm | Report abuse |
    • Joke

      Last time I checked his mother was white.

      July 5, 2011 at 4:03 pm | Report abuse |
    • ANGIE

      I think someone needs a learning lesson on the President. He is BI_RACIAL> His father is black and his Mother is white and was born in Hawaii! go to the web and look at a pic of her. She is not black!

      July 5, 2011 at 4:05 pm | Report abuse |
    • VJ

      Not that it has anything to do with this discussion, but Obama's mother was white and his father was Kenyan. That is bi-racial. But leave it to the undereducated populace to stray from an important topic into something ignorant and misinformed.

      July 5, 2011 at 4:06 pm | Report abuse |
    • CinciKid

      What? What planet do you live on?

      July 5, 2011 at 4:06 pm | Report abuse |
    • Philly Pat

      Actually, his mother was Caucasian.

      July 5, 2011 at 4:07 pm | Report abuse |
    • cat lady

      No-his mother was white.

      July 5, 2011 at 4:08 pm | Report abuse |
    • Sandy

      President Obama's parents were not both black. What rock have you been residing under? His mother was caucasian aand his father was from Kenya. What does race or President Obama have to do with this trial? It's sickening that people were crying for Caysee in the court room today. I wonder who was crying for Caylee. Due to time served she'll be out in time to enter herself into another hot body contest by this Saturday. Sickening!

      July 5, 2011 at 4:09 pm | Report abuse |
    • kids having kids

      i hope she wins the hot body contest... why mop around. Everybody is crying murder but we are the ones who want to get off the hook every day. All she needs to do is accept her guilt and mourn over her child, mature, learn and move on. Actually i'd vote for heR at the hot body contest, i believe in second chances.

      July 5, 2011 at 5:02 pm | Report abuse |
    • Kevin in Atlanta

      I'd hit that...

      July 5, 2011 at 5:29 pm | Report abuse |
    • Linda P.

      And where do you see Caylee's second chance?

      July 5, 2011 at 7:58 pm | Report abuse |
    • Gayle

      No, genius, President Obama's mother was white. That makes him bi-racial.

      July 5, 2011 at 4:11 pm | Report abuse |
    • swtnsassy

      Hmmmm hate to rain on your parade, but the President's mother is as white as they get. So, he is bi-racial

      July 5, 2011 at 4:15 pm | Report abuse |
    • Spring

      Dear Oh No: President Obama's mother is white. Facts are important.

      July 5, 2011 at 4:21 pm | Report abuse |
    • phoebesfriend

      The President's mother was white. He was partially raised by her parents, who were also white. That makes him bi-racial. In America, any amount of African background used always to make you black, even if it was only 1/8th. That was racist. We still call Obama "black", because what biracial people achieve is still as important as if they were fully black. And maybe it's just inertia.

      July 5, 2011 at 4:24 pm | Report abuse |
    • Winnie

      REALLY??!? You better go do a little more research on that one!!!

      July 5, 2011 at 4:24 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jumpin' jive

      hUH? BA-Rack I 1/2 black, 1/2 white....daddy from Kenya and Mama from Kansas....

      July 5, 2011 at 4:32 pm | Report abuse |
    • Sandy

      UMMMMM bi-racial means two races and his mother is caucasion and his father was from Kenya I believe. So no both his parents were not black.

      July 5, 2011 at 4:33 pm | Report abuse |
    • MarineVet

      Did the fact that President Obama's mother is white get lost in the Martian translation????????/

      July 5, 2011 at 4:36 pm | Report abuse |
    • YouRDumDumDum

      Wow. Just wow. You are really, really clueless if you think both the president's parents were black. He was born to a white mother and a black father, and raised by his white maternal grandparents. Look it up ANYWHERE. Read any of his books. You are so dumb.

      July 5, 2011 at 4:38 pm | Report abuse |
    • ww

      Um....you might want to Google your facts there....Obama's mom was white Anglo Saxon woman...

      July 5, 2011 at 4:58 pm | Report abuse |
    • speechmom

      Sorry, but his father was a black man from Kenya. His mother was a white woman from Kansas.

      July 5, 2011 at 5:16 pm | Report abuse |
    • bkh333

      What President are you talking about?

      Obama's mama is white

      July 5, 2011 at 6:18 pm | Report abuse |
    • Kathy

      No, our president is bi-racial. His mom is white and his dad black.

      July 5, 2011 at 6:25 pm | Report abuse |
    • stephy

      So his mom is white? I think I got it now!

      July 5, 2011 at 8:44 pm | Report abuse |
    • Bill

      No. The President's mother was white and his father black.

      July 8, 2011 at 11:09 pm | Report abuse |
    • Charles

      Oh? How about multi-religious, for accuracy.

      July 6, 2011 at 11:58 am | Report abuse |
  9. Jeff

    remove Nancy Grace from the air! A journalist must never be moved by own perceptions especially when there's no facts other then media speculations...
    She is not only rude person but also somebody dangerous to our society.

    July 5, 2011 at 3:39 pm | Report abuse |
    • autogerry

      I AGREE

      July 5, 2011 at 3:47 pm | Report abuse |
    • Pat

      I totally agree with you...Nancy Grace is a total screw up...rude mentally retarded reporter!

      July 5, 2011 at 3:51 pm | Report abuse |
    • Brent

      here here

      July 5, 2011 at 3:59 pm | Report abuse |
  10. MCC

    Unless you were in the courtroom everyday, then you don't know all the facts. I just hope that justice was served and that they find the real murderer of Caylee. Everyone has lost this little girl in this trial, we must all remember that there is a murderer of a child still out there. I believe in our justice system be it right or wrong. Lets just keep Caylee in our thoughts, hearts and prayers. The jury does has the right to privacy, and our media needs to respect this. I do not think that the jury hurried into this verdict lighty.

    July 5, 2011 at 3:39 pm | Report abuse |
    • Onegood1

      Because of the concept of double jeopardy (you can't try the same person twice for the same thing, even if there is new evidence), they will never find the real perp.

      July 5, 2011 at 3:42 pm | Report abuse |
    • annab12456

      Just because she was not found guilty does not mean she didn't do it or that she had nothing to do with it. The prosecution just couldn't prove it. The jury totally confused "reasonable doubt" with "beyond the shadow of a doubt" which are 2 completely different things.

      July 5, 2011 at 3:44 pm | Report abuse |
    • Herb

      There was no murder. The little girl drowned. I don't believe it, I believe that Casey killed her daughter. The "facts" are that she drowned, there won't be further murder investigations.

      July 5, 2011 at 3:44 pm | Report abuse |
    • Bill

      Look dummy, Casey Anthony chloroformed the kid, put tape over her mouth and nose, put her in a bag and tossed her in the trunk of her (Casey's) car. That's what happened. The fact that they couldn't prove it in a courtroom doesn't change history.

      July 5, 2011 at 3:44 pm | Report abuse |
    • CareerMom


      July 5, 2011 at 3:45 pm | Report abuse |
  11. JIM

    I really believe she is innocent!!! I also believe in the Easter Bunny, that all politicians are honest and that Barry Bonds never took steroids.....

    July 5, 2011 at 3:39 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Lou

    I always wondered what became of the OJ Simpson jurors. No we know.

    July 5, 2011 at 3:40 pm | Report abuse |
    • Name*Tim

      Exactly what I was thinking! Winder if this jury will get the same criticism that the OJ jury got???

      July 5, 2011 at 3:54 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Chris

    I guess OJ did it

    July 5, 2011 at 3:40 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Teresa

    Baez will now be the 'it' lawyer in Orange County. Casey will live under a rock.

    July 5, 2011 at 3:40 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Geno

    These are 12 idiots who couldnt come up with a good excuse to get out of jury duty. What else would you expect. Sorry Caylee, we failed you sweetheart

    July 5, 2011 at 3:40 pm | Report abuse |
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