Other shocking court verdicts
Casey Anthony, with her attorney Jose Baez, approaches the podium to hear Judge Belvin Perry confirm that she is not guilty of murder charges at the Orange County Courthouse Orlando, Fla. on July 5, 2011.
July 6th, 2011
12:17 PM ET

Other shocking court verdicts

Casey Anthony's acquittal on first-degree murder charges may be one of the most surprising trial outcomes in at least a decade. The Florida mom may have escaped with only misdemeanor convictions, but her acquittal is drawing comparisons to another high-profile murder trial: O.J. Simpson's.

O.J. Simpson escapes murder conviction – Police suspected Simpson murdered Nicole Brown Simpson and Ronald Goldman in June 1994. The case dominated headlines and was must-see television. Between Simpson's infamous low-speed car chase, the trial's intriguing cast and a dream team full of legal heavyweights, the former NFL superstar was able to avoid conviction. O.J. showed signs of relief and joy when he learned his fate.
[cnn-video url="http://www.cnn.com/video/#/video/crime/2011/06/12/vault.oj.simpson.verdict.cnn "]
Outside the courtroom tensions arose. Some cheered "The Juice's" acquittal while others were stunned and suspected his fame and fortune allowed him to get away with murder.
[cnn-video url="http://www.cnn.com/video/#/video/crime/2011/06/11/vault.simpson.verdict.reaction.cnn"%5D
Jury acquits Robert Blake – "Baretta" helped make Robert Blake a star, but it was a murder accusation that launched him into the headlines again. Blake was accused of killing his wife, Bonny Lee Bakely, in 2001. Blake always maintained his innocence and, in 2005, a jury agreed, finding the actor not guilty of murder. When the jury announced the verdict, Blake began sobbing.
[cnn-video url="http://www.cnn.com/video/#/video/crime/2011/07/06/vault.bts.robert.blake.jurors.cnn"%5D
Rodney King verdict sparks riots – Los Angeles already was rife with racial tension before the Rodney King incident. But the allegations of excessive force by white police officers were caught on tape. That had many thinking they'd never be acquitted. Jurors surprised the city and the nation by acquitting all but one of the officers. The verdict proved to be the spark that ignited a powder keg of strained racial relations. Riots broke out in the city's most urban areas and even the president had to get involved.
[cnn-video url="http://www.cnn.com/video/#/video/crime/2011/07/06/vault.los.angeles.riots.cnn"%5D
Fans rally behind Michael Jackson – Child molestation allegations again surrounded Michael Jackson in 2005, resulting in a criminal trial. While some were surprised the King of Pop was found not guilty, his enthusiastic fans never doubted his innocence. They rallied behind him, cheering his victory. One person even released a white dove for each not guilty verdict.
[cnn-video url="http://www.cnn.com/video/#/video/crime/2011/07/06/vault.michael.jackson.verdict.cnn "]

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Filed under: California • Casey Anthony • Celebrity • Courts • Crime • Florida • Gotta Watch • Justice • Michael Jackson • Showbiz • TV • U.S.
soundoff (264 Responses)
  1. dale.zalewski

    I fail to see any relevant parallel(s) to Blake, Simpson and Jackson. Compared to them she's small potatoes

    July 6, 2011 at 1:28 pm | Report abuse |
    • Laura

      I think the relevant parallel is that juries of our peers are intelligent enough to know when a prosecutor's case has been proven beyond a reasonable doubt.

      July 6, 2011 at 1:51 pm | Report abuse |
    • Kay

      Right on, Laura!

      July 6, 2011 at 2:00 pm | Report abuse |
    • CW0WW

      @dale – the entire country disagrees.

      July 6, 2011 at 2:05 pm | Report abuse |
  2. jamie

    she is going to get her true verdict on judgement day. We all know she'll be headed south and not north!

    July 6, 2011 at 1:29 pm | Report abuse |
    • Speedro

      Except that heaven, hell and God are all myths, so she will basically be fine.

      July 6, 2011 at 1:33 pm | Report abuse |
    • Cedar Rapids

      'so she will basically be fine.'
      apart from, you know, being dead and all.

      July 6, 2011 at 1:49 pm | Report abuse |
  3. adam

    Speedro-Exactly.It is also an utter myth that the evil always get punished in this world.

    July 6, 2011 at 1:39 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Grace

    I do not believe that a cause of death was determined for Lacey Peterson, but Scott Peterson is on death row for her demise. At least he reported her disappearance to the police. So much was made of the fact that Casey was a good mother, well David Smith, former husband of Susan Smith was on Dr. Drew and said that Susan was a wonderful mother and yet she drowned her sons. He also felt that Casey was guilty. This means that anyone who wants to be rid of their child can follow these acts and as long as the victim's body is hidden long enough to decompose, nothing can be proven. Sad...

    July 6, 2011 at 1:46 pm | Report abuse |
    • Nate

      Exactly right. No cause of death in the Peterson case. I agree with you and my biggest problem with the case is that Casey was the direct cause of the evidence issues. She waited 31 days to report Caylee missing. Plenty of time to cover up, clean up, destroy, and let evidence disappear/decompose. It also helped greatly that her mom lied about searching for "chloroform." We need professional juries. There are too many dumb people who are easily confused out there.

      July 6, 2011 at 1:55 pm | Report abuse |
    • Heather

      Really? Her HEAD was cut off and THEIR unborn child was born post mortem. Furthermore, he told his mistress that he did it. Casey Anthony told no one she did it, unfortunately.

      July 6, 2011 at 2:02 pm | Report abuse |
    • jc

      The difference between Peterson and Anthony's cases is the fact that Scott Peterson's DNA was all over everything including receipts confirming that he purchased everything used to kill her and try to sink her in the ocean. He also changed his appearance and withdrew a ton of money in order to flee. There was much more evidence in the Peterson case that proved his guilt, there was no room for speculation. Do I think that she is guilty, yes I do! Unfortunately, the prosecution only relied on pure speculation and had nothing to support their so called facts. Even the forensic scientists couldn't prove anything....

      July 6, 2011 at 2:29 pm | Report abuse |
    • Reilleyfam

      Peterson was verified at the location where the bodies washed up and was proven to be there the night Lacy went missing – on Xmas Eve (what is he doing fishing in Berkeley on Xmas Eve when his wife is missing?). He also was telling Amber Frey he was a "widow" before Lacy was even missing – much more incriminating than Casey.

      July 6, 2011 at 2:31 pm | Report abuse |
  5. travis

    if nancy grace was only show on cnn i would not watch

    July 6, 2011 at 1:47 pm | Report abuse |
  6. cruzbayusa

    Lizzie Borden took and axe
    Gave her parents forty wacks
    Casey Anthony took her tot
    Left her in the swamp to rot
    Heartlees creatures feel no pain
    Freedom from family, lives to gain
    Our judicial system set them free
    To live convicted by society

    July 6, 2011 at 1:49 pm | Report abuse |
    • Reilleyfam

      Poetic Justice?

      July 6, 2011 at 2:32 pm | Report abuse |
  7. JanJ

    The state did not prove their case. The media built up the frenzie, the people demanded blood and the state tried to deliver.

    If the news media had not covered this case the way they did, the state would have gone after a lesser more achievable charge and probably would have won.

    I have heard some very negative comments in the media about the jury who served on ths case. The jury did their job admirably and came back with the only fair verdict for the case presented to them.

    If anyone is to blame, it's the media that publishes news as entertainment. It's the people who lack the mentality to seperate actual facts from enhanced entertainment and the state who overtried a case believing the jury shared the same lesser mentality.

    So if you believe a killer got off, put the blame where it belongs. Not on the jury

    July 6, 2011 at 1:52 pm | Report abuse |
    • b16

      well put. I agree totally!

      July 6, 2011 at 1:59 pm | Report abuse |
    • Laura

      Thank you, JanJ; but how do we convince the majority of this truth?

      July 6, 2011 at 2:00 pm | Report abuse |
    • Kay

      Well said!

      July 6, 2011 at 2:02 pm | Report abuse |
    • Bill

      Well said about the media. I totally agree with you. People like Nancy Grace make me sick...trying to persuade the public with no authority or truth behind her words.


      July 6, 2011 at 2:36 pm | Report abuse |
    • JanJ

      You wont be able to convince the majority, they have their minds set, they heard it on the news so it must be true. It does no good to even try.

      The media could, but they wont.

      July 6, 2011 at 2:47 pm | Report abuse |
    • anon

      You are retarded 🙁

      July 6, 2011 at 2:52 pm | Report abuse |
    • JanJ

      I don't reply to the people who make stupid comments like...Casey drove around with the baby in the trunk so she must be guilty.

      I watched the entire trial and nowhere did I see it confirmed or proven that Casey drove around with a child in her trunk. Believe me if the state had facts to back up that theory they would have and could have proven it to be true. But the media aired it as a fact so it is true to the followers.

      July 6, 2011 at 3:10 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Justice for Caylee ...When??

    Dizzy Casey waited 31 days to report that child missing because she wanted the body to decompose so she could get off of this murder verdict just like she has. Her father is a former police officer, that physcopath knows what to do. All Casey wants is her way or no way. Casey planned and killed Caylee by her sick self. Caylee's body was in that car while decomposing and then dumped in that swamp like she was trash. Casey should have life in Prison without EVER having a chance for parol. And the jury she had is just as sick as Casey is, especially the one that spoke on Good Morning America this morning he look like a physcopath himself.

    Who killed Caylee if Casey didn't?

    July 6, 2011 at 1:55 pm | Report abuse |
    • Kay

      Why are you assuming that someone had to kill her? Do you not believe that accidents happen? That children die from other causes than murder?

      July 6, 2011 at 2:05 pm | Report abuse |
    • Dj

      Hey Kay....Why did they find duct tape in the little girls mouth if it was an accident ?

      July 6, 2011 at 2:13 pm | Report abuse |
    • Laura

      Dj, please read the duct tape evidence presented to the jury.

      July 6, 2011 at 2:28 pm | Report abuse |
    • Gina Gardner

      Now someone is speaking the obvious truth. She should not be able to enjoy another day of her life. By the smurks in court she was enjoying this court proceeding. I wish people were not sooooo gullible. She shoulfd be held accountable for telling the truth. Our justice system has failed in this aspect.

      July 6, 2011 at 4:23 pm | Report abuse |
  9. bruce l

    Somebody call Dexter

    July 6, 2011 at 1:56 pm | Report abuse |
    • teacher212

      Yes, Dexter will know just what to do! He lives in Florida, too, how convenient!

      July 6, 2011 at 2:44 pm | Report abuse |
  10. ChrisB

    Well, if the tabloid media, which is just about all of it today, would not try the cases in the public arena before they ever come to trial, then actually reported properly on what does happen in the actual courtroom, then the public wouldn't pronounce someone guilty without a fair trial. The media is not judge, jury, and prosecution. The prosecution must have failed to prove it case, therefore the jury made its decision. If anyone would bother to read the court transcripts and the FBI files that are available on the Michael Jackson case, it's a miracle he even got a fair trial. The media had him tried and convicted before he ever stepped into the courtroom. Then, they have the guts to whine about the verdict because a not guilty verdict didn't serve their purposes. If you think that you are getting the proper stories from our tabloid media that gets paid more for sensational news than true news, you are sadly mistaken. I will put my faith in the justice system and not in the media. The other cases above are celebrities who are said to have gotten off because of their money. If so, all poor people are innocent then. And, how do you fit Casey Anthony into that story. The whole country is turning into mindless media sheep.

    July 6, 2011 at 2:01 pm | Report abuse |
  11. cawobeth3

    Though CNN covered this case extensively & I was able to watch some of the reporting, I would have needed to be in the courtroom for the proceedings to have formed my judgment on each charge.

    I see that you choose to group some of the most notorious court cases here in one article.
    This is not a good thing to do even. Though all of these cases have fame in common, each case was unique by it's nature and sensationalized my media with varying approaches.

    Last but not least, you choose to post a video & statement regarding the Michael Jackson case. As per this comment "While some were surprised the King of Pop was found not guilty" ; that is, due to the media's relentless false portrayal and obvious prejudice.
    FACT- Mr. Jackson was acquitted by a conservative jury who found him not guilty, beyond ANY reasonable doubt, because Tom Meserau left no stone unturned when he presented extensive evidence to the jury.

    Allow me to remind you that media IS NOT The judge and jury.

    July 6, 2011 at 2:01 pm | Report abuse |
    • Kay

      Yesterday these forums were jam-packed with people furious that she had gotten off...and proclaiming that *everyone* 'KNEW' Casey had murdered Caylee...and that the jury should never sleep again. There were even people calling for violent ends to both Casey and the jurors. Yeesh.

      I'm very pleased to see so many reasonable voices today. Thank you.

      July 6, 2011 at 2:09 pm | Report abuse |
    • Theresa Gallagher

      Well said cawobeth3!!

      July 6, 2011 at 2:49 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Eileen157

    Nancy Grace is correct. The devil is dancing!! I believe sicko Casey has sold her soul to the devil. I am shocked that she was found not guilty. Hopefully, the old saying "what goes around comes around" is true and she will get hers yet! I suppose she'll be moving in with Jose, who else would take her in?

    July 6, 2011 at 2:11 pm | Report abuse |
    • Kristi

      Nancy, Casey, and you should all be dropped into a volcano!

      July 6, 2011 at 2:26 pm | Report abuse |
  13. @Ed Sr.

    .............Why are you babbling......?

    July 6, 2011 at 2:26 pm | Report abuse |
  14. cawobeth3

    Correction- "This is not necessarily a good thing to do. Though all of these cases have fame in common, each case was unique by it's nature and sensationalized BY media with varying approaches."

    I repeat- media IS NOT The judge and jury. Tom Meserau proved this back then, and again last night, despite media's persistence in insisting to insinuate that Michael Jackson may have been guilty.

    CNN, I do believe that it is in your best interest, and that of your viewers, to have integrity as a news outlet.
    The respectful way to mention Michael Jackson, and the allegations about him is honestly instead of avoiding the facts of what really happened and who Michael Jackson really is.

    Mere mention of a famous person, for sake of ratings, is awfully distasteful and you lose respect by not using people and names in a respectful & truthful manner. It is not only distasteful, unsubstantiated opinions rank as tabloid.

    You and other news outlets have chosen to confuse the public about MJ for far too long.

    July 6, 2011 at 2:26 pm | Report abuse |
  15. pedro


    July 6, 2011 at 2:27 pm | Report abuse |
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