Nancy Grace: I don't have to agree with Casey Anthony jury
HLN host and former prosecutor Nancy Grace broadcasts live during verdict watch in the Casey Anthony trial this week.
July 6th, 2011
08:56 PM ET

Nancy Grace: I don't have to agree with Casey Anthony jury

HLN host Nancy Grace has been credited with making the Casey Anthony case a national story. She has been outspoken in her belief that Anthony is guilty of murdering her daughter, despite a jury's verdict. She's also a former prosecutor with strong opinions about what went on in the Florida courtroom in the past few weeks. She spoke with CNN.com about how she would have tried the case, the "CSI effect" on juries and why she doesn't "give a fig" about what Anthony's defense team thinks about her.

Grace: As I’ve always said since 1984, when I started trying cases, you win or lose your case - it’s all over at the end of voir dire (jury selection). I’ve always believed that. It’s true. I think this jury hamstrung the state. The state absolutely put up a good case and I get real fed up when I hear this is a circumstantial case. Most cases are circumstantial because rarely do people commit felony crimes in the open. Murder, armed robbery, you do it in private, in secret, so very rarely is there an eyewitness or direct evidence to a crime.

CNN: Watching a case like this, do you miss the courtroom and prosecuting cases?

Grace: I always miss the courtroom. I miss the courtroom all the time because the courtroom gave me immediate gratification. I knew I’d done something worthwhile when I put someone behind bars or represented crime victims, I knew I had a done a good thing by speaking for people who couldn’t speak for themselves. I don’t get that immediate gratification from being on TV.

CNN: As a former prosecutor, if you could retry this case, how would you do it differently?

Grace: I think they did such a very good job it’s hard to attack anything they did. I think maybe I would’ve taken a different tack in jury selection but that’s really it. There were some obvious problem jurors: You had one on there with an arrest for DUI; another with an arrest for drug paraphernalia; one whose sister and her boyfriend beat up their father; one juror who said she could not judge. Why the heck would you not want someone off the jury who cannot judge? The jury is the sole judge of facts, evidence and the law. Who the heck wants someone who can’t judge? They tried to get rid of them but were not successful. I think the jury was snakebitten from the get-go.

CNN: What do you think is the most important piece of evidence that the jury never saw or heard?

Grace: I don’t believe they saw all of the audiotapes or heard all the videotapes (of Casey Anthony’s jailhouse phone calls). I think the so-called bodyguard or bail bondsman had a lot to offer, his discussions with tot mom when she was referring to Caylee in the past tense before her body had been found, her being very flip about Caylee, being more concerned about a hot guy flirting with her on Facebook. Evidence of that nature.

There was another inmate that she allegedly discussed chloroform with, the fact there was absolutely an inmate who talked about a child floating in a pool in the backyard while the family was in the house … she lifted that story and transposed it onto Caylee. The fact that that inmate may not have had direct discussions with tot mom does not matter. … She did discuss it behind bars and within earshot of tot mom when they were in jail, on the cellblock at same time. I understand why the state didn’t do it, because when you start dealing with snitches and inmates it can blow up in your face.

CNN: What was the biggest weakness in the state’s forensic evidence, if any?

Grace: The single biggest weakness was the state didn’t have a cause of death. That is not required - there have been many, many cases with murder 1 convictions without any body. But the fact that the defendant can get rid of a body or let a body (be) hidden for so long that you cannot determine a cause of death is not a reason a defendant should get a benefit or a gold star or A-plus. I think the fact they didn’t have a cause of death hurt them because the jury could not understand the case or take it in. Juries have been watching too much "CSI" - they want murder weapon, DNA, fingerprints. In this case, there was no blood, no murder weapon. They wanted things that didn’t exist. They wanted a murder weapon – the murder weapon was tot mom’s hands. I also think the jury didn’t understand the law or felony murder. All said, it was a bad jury and I do not think it reflects on the case the state put up.

CNN: What did you think of the defense case? Did their experts neutralize the state’s experts?

Grace: I don’t think much of the defense case. However, when it gets so complex for jurors, the experts cancel themselves out.

CNN: How would you have handled Cindy Anthony? Should the state consider charging her with perjury?

Grace: I know she committed perjury but I don’t think a jury would convict her. I think that’s a very tough decision for authorities to make ... but no doubt what she said on the stand was not true.

CNN: People credit your involvement in highlighting the case early on. Looking back, is there anything you would have done differently?

Grace: The only thing I would’ve done differently is put on my hip boots and gone down to Florida and looked for Caylee myself.

CNN: What did you think of Cheney Mason’s statements that lawyers like yourself engaged in media assassination for the past three years?

Grace: I don’t recall him mentioning me by name but I think he’s more likely targeting local lawyers and members of the Florida bar who were discussing the case in the community. However, on the off chance he is, I really don’t give a fig. I mean, every time you take a stand on anything or stand up for anything, somebody’s going to dislike you and the fact that one of tot mom’s defense lawyers doesn’t like me doesn’t concern me in the least. I don’t like them much either.

CNN: Do you think it’s unethical for lawyers like yourself to make such pointed statements about a defendant’s guilt or innocence on national television?

Grace: Let me see, if I’m correct, the Constitution has a little thing called the First Amendment which allows for freedom of speech and under freedom of speech, unless it is defamatory, I’m pretty much allowed to speak my mind, and the fact I’m an upstanding member of the Georgia and D.C. bars does not cause me to lose my freedom of speech. As a matter of fact, if you were to read the minutes that were taken down as the Constitution was being written and passed, our fathers wanted courtrooms large enough for the whole community to sit in and see. No closed-door justice, no secret justice, and to me, that ensures a lively discourse about our justice system and what’s going on in the courtroom. So the answer to your question is no. I don’t consider discussing court cases unethical. In fact, I consider it healthy.

CNN: You have said that our system of justice requires us to respect the jury's decision, but since the verdict you have continued to maintain that Casey Anthony is guilty and that the jurors erred in their decision. When is it time to come to terms with the fact that the jurors disagreed with you and move on?

Grace: I’ve already come to grips with the fact they disagree with me, and I don’t agree with them. But that doesn’t mean I have to agree with their decision. They were wrong: Tot mom murdered her daughter.

CNN: If you had access to the jurors, what would you ask them?

Grace: I would ask them why they did what they did. I’d like to know why. Not that it’s going to make any difference. There’s no way to explain their verdict, no logical way. Maybe that’s the problem. I’m trying to apply logic to people who were illogical in their jury deliberations.

CNN: Is there anything Casey Anthony can do to redeem herself? What would you like to see her do?

Grace: I’d like to see her admit she’s guilty and go to jail. Other than that, I’m not in the business of forgiving. That’s up to the lord. I’m just relieved that I believe, that I know, Caylee is in a place where her mother cannot hurt her anymore.

Watch Nancy Grace Monday through Sunday starting at 8 p.m. ET on HLN. For the latest from Nancy Grace click here.

soundoff (2,650 Responses)
  1. JENH

    Nancy, if it was a bad jury, it was partly your fault for bringing so much public attention to this case, for sensationalizing it for the public, so no one could turn on the tv without listening to the ilk of you running your mouth, and POLLUTING the potential jury pool. Look no further for fault Nancy then the mirror.

    July 6, 2011 at 11:29 pm | Report abuse |
    • Rita

      Such a ridiculous opinion.

      July 6, 2011 at 11:35 pm | Report abuse |
    • JENH

      and why would it be ridiculous? Because you can't see the truth of Nancy Grace? I've disliked her since watching her go for the shock value in an interview with Elizabeth Smart. And not only do I have no respect for her, I have less for CNN. And to refute the theories, I *am* a woman,

      July 6, 2011 at 11:39 pm | Report abuse |
    • Diereisis

      Astute my a&&, this women is cruel. She is all about rating & not about caring. I have heard her ask questions of a victim's family memeber that just made me willing to go to jail if slapping her would have put her in her place. Even Elizabeth Smart told her how inappropriate her line of questioning was. Elizabeth responded by saying "You had agreed not to ask these types of questions since they serve no purpose and I think it is inappropriate of you to to do so now that I am on your show." I think Nancy Grace thought she could bully the young girl. Ms Grace was obviously unaware, when you have been through a crisis similar to Ms Smart, you now possess a calm that allows you to handle things effortlessly, especially little things. (like Ms Grace.)

      July 7, 2011 at 12:08 am | Report abuse |
  2. Kat

    To all of you Nancy Grace haters: This is a woman who knows and cares. She's a tough woman, very opinionated, but also very astute. Evidently, this combination scares a lot of weak and stupid people. I'll bet most of the haters are men. Strong women scare the hell out of them. This case has been very hard on her, especially as she is a loving mother to her twins, and ANY mother would feel the same. I hope the twelve people on that jury have access to sleeping pills, as I don't see how they will be able to rest knowing they have set a baby killer loose. May God damn Casey Anthony, because the twelve of them didn't when they had the chance.

    July 6, 2011 at 11:29 pm | Report abuse |
    • Tot mom is a child killer

      Well said....I agree!

      July 6, 2011 at 11:31 pm | Report abuse |
    • sam

      song of the immature nancy supperters->we are afraid of strong women!
      what a loser u and nancy r!
      nancy is so ugly she cant even get laid at a prison
      she is ugly!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!with a capital F!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

      July 6, 2011 at 11:32 pm | Report abuse |
    • Chris

      She's a woman whose last murder case was tossed for prosecutorial misconduct....her misconduct. She's vindictive and over rated. Unlike her colleagues in the DAs office, she only was assigned one case at a time. It's just too bad she's all over the TV and Atlanta cannot get past her.

      July 6, 2011 at 11:34 pm | Report abuse |
    • Girhm

      This case was Nancy Graces baby...didn't turn out too good either.

      July 6, 2011 at 11:34 pm | Report abuse |
    • sam

      nancy is so stupid!
      i bet she promises to swallow but only spits!
      no wonder no guy would lay the pipe into her!
      she is fugly!!!!!!!!!

      July 6, 2011 at 11:35 pm | Report abuse |
    • sam

      i bet she only got dicked in high school and university after she got the guy so liquored up he couldnt walk 2 feet without puking his guts out!
      i bet she was the biggest wh*0r3 in university!
      i hope she NEVER has kids! they would be soooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo fugly!

      July 6, 2011 at 11:37 pm | Report abuse |
    • Danielle

      Couldn't have said it better myself 🙂

      July 6, 2011 at 11:42 pm | Report abuse |
    • John Smith

      Wow that is as far from accurate as I think I have ever heard anyone describe Nancy Grace. We, as a very large group of men and women, I myself being a man (obviously), greatly Nancy Grace because she sensationalizes a story and twists it because of her opinion and her interpretation. She distorts the truth as many people do, but a lot of what she says is taken as fact, and not questioned by her audience. She is driven, but blind. She doesn't examine and question, but instead moves quickly to conclusions, and through all of this, she influences others. Why we educated folk hate her, is that we realize incompetent, ignorant people will believe everything she says, and will never understand the true scope of anything she says.

      July 6, 2011 at 11:43 pm | Report abuse |
    • Mike

      That is just plain stupid. Are you kidding? It has nothing to do with a man or a woman. It only has to do with our justice system. The prosecution was bush league. That is why the case was lost. Nancy Grace is a blow hard. She doesn't respect anyone's first amendment right when they are on her show. She always speaks over them never allowing them to voice their opinion. All she wants to do is voice her opinion and drive it home.

      The only time I have ever watched her was to watch her eat crow after the verdict was read. She claims that the jurors where idiots. Umm, that means you and I. She has a superiority complex that must be squashed.

      July 6, 2011 at 11:58 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Shadows

    Nancy Grace cares about herself and nothing else. She has the nerve to say Casey may get a book deal out of this. Well, so what Nancy. Look at all the money you make opening your mouth with your own opinions. Next time you don't like a decision, please spare us and keep your trap shut! Let the court system work and not the court of Nancy Grace. Unreal.

    July 6, 2011 at 11:30 pm | Report abuse |
    • Mike

      Agreed. I will not waste 1 watt of electricity watching her show. I pretty sure that there is a maximum requirement of nothing greater than a 60 IQ to watch her show.

      July 7, 2011 at 12:01 am | Report abuse |
  4. Laywer Up

    Nancy Grace should be sued for slander by the jury, by casey anthony, by all of em. She is a blight on her profession. She doesn't even have the guts to call out the prosecutes on their weak case and trying a murder one case with basically nothing.

    July 6, 2011 at 11:31 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Rita

    I love you Nancy Grace. Thank you for your dedication to Caylee Anthony, I remember when you first aired the news that Caylee was missing. Who could imagine how this would play out. I hope Casey Anthony has an absolutely miserable life after her first whiff of freedom. Justice for Caylee.

    July 6, 2011 at 11:31 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Benita

    The " not guilty" verdict was a shock. Aside from the Anthony family I wonder what will happen to the jurors families. If they are married, will we see a sudden increase in divorces? Wondering how the spouses of the jurors feel about the outcome?

    July 6, 2011 at 11:31 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Nadine

    One of the very few people that I admire on CNN is Nancy Grace. Her logic and courage to say things the way they are without being emotional is quite remarkable. Thanks Nancy for the great work. You are truly wonderful.

    July 6, 2011 at 11:32 pm | Report abuse |
    • John Smith

      Without being emotional? You seriously just said that.... wow, the oblivious lives some people live in must be so nice. Ignorance truly is bliss

      July 6, 2011 at 11:49 pm | Report abuse |
    • Mike

      How can you afford a computer with a kindergarten education? "Her logic and courage to say things the way they are without being emotional is quite remarkable." What is remarkable is your ability to type a complete sentence. How can you say that she is without emotion when discussing this? How can you say she has logic? She is a total rube that preys on weak minds like yourself. Maybe you should hit the back button on your remote and watch sponge bob, at least that is something you may understand.

      July 7, 2011 at 12:07 am | Report abuse |
  8. nancy_disgrace

    Nacy Grace should be ASHAMED. What an evil soul, profiting off the death of a little girl! Now Casey's life will be ruined by Grace's shrill female supporters, despite being found not guilty by a jury of her peers.

    July 6, 2011 at 11:32 pm | Report abuse |
    • Mike

      It's people like her that are ruining the justice system. CNN loses credibility every day she is on the air. She should be on the Lifetime Network advertising snuggee's.

      July 7, 2011 at 12:10 am | Report abuse |
  9. MARIE MILLS

    SAVE ALLISON MILLS
    http://www.Facebook.com/SaveAllisonMills

    TWEET FOR JUSTICE!!!!
    http://www.Twitter.com/JusticeForMills

    July 6, 2011 at 11:32 pm | Report abuse |
  10. ksmc

    I am done watching CNN, HLN and Nancy Grace!! Fox and MSNBC do a much better job, without cramming their opions down the throats of eveyone. Nancy started all this....but I have not heard her say anything about the baby being put in the microwave by the mother!!! She is on a witch hunt....guilty or not....it is over..so get over it!!!

    July 6, 2011 at 11:32 pm | Report abuse |
  11. kmz0212

    Our justice system works just because Ms. Know It All Mrs. Disgrace doesn't agree. The jury made their decision based on the prosecution not proving their case whether Mrs Big Mouth Disgrace likes it or not. Nancy Grace seems to think that her saying that Casey Anthony is guilty makes it true, she doesn't want to face reality that maybe this mother didn't do it and it was an accident like they are saying. I am sure glad that Grace does not prosecute anymore because I am sure that somebody would wipe the street with her ugly puss. Let her go onto the next sensational case that she can make and let this one go. The decision has been made and there is nothing that the higher than thou Nancy Grace and all of her cohorts on TruTV and HLN can do about it.

    July 6, 2011 at 11:32 pm | Report abuse |
  12. craig

    comment

    July 6, 2011 at 11:32 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Kabel

    What the heck? I thought our legal system was about giving people a fair trial, not about manipulating the jury in order to guarantee the out come of a trial. The whole idea of the vior dire process was and still should be to illuminate prospective jurors based on conflicts of interests or an inability to remain fair and objective, not for the defense or prosecution to stack the jury. This is part of the current problem with our justice system. A prosecutors job is to find the truth, not to be judge, jury and executioner. A prosecutors main concern should be establishing the truth instead of wining at all costs.

    July 6, 2011 at 11:32 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Barney

    Nancy, You have the right to think wrong, and you are wrong this Time Girl, I think ABC thinks so too, and you were not in the courtroom or on the Jury either, so you really do not know do you, Nancy ????????????????????????????????

    July 6, 2011 at 11:32 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Peter Murdoch

    Thank God you still need evidence to be convicted of murder. Being a bad mother is not the same as being a murder Nancy Grace. The good news is Jessica Alba agrees with you.

    July 6, 2011 at 11:33 pm | Report abuse |
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