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. Agree

    I agree with you Nancy... you do not have to agree with the jury. Just as I don't have to agree with you. We both have opinions and I will not slam you or belittle you for yours.

    So, please do not slam or belittle me for mine.

    July 8, 2011 at 3:14 pm | Report abuse |
    • Kristal

      if your arguing with nancy your the idiot shes only 4 right so u must b 4 wri\ong u moron dummy idiottttttttttttttt so shut up u low life

      July 8, 2011 at 3:18 pm | Report abuse |
    • Agree

      That is the level I'm talking about that I'm not stooping to. You have your right to your opinions... thank you for sharing them with me.

      July 8, 2011 at 3:24 pm | Report abuse |
    • Bree82

      @Agree......I concur with your first post even moreso after reading the replies. If you are going to question someones jusdgement Kristal, while belittling them for having a mind of their own, at least hit spellcheck first. I think there is a grammar button too.....

      July 8, 2011 at 4:26 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Kelly

    I love you Nancy and think you are great! You are not only funny but you make very good points about this case and others that you speak about. These people talking bad about you don't know what they are talking about. I love your show and tape it when I'm not going to be home.
    You're great )

    July 8, 2011 at 3:16 pm | Report abuse |
    • Kristal

      your so correct b on the side of Nancy that way your always going 2 b a winner

      July 8, 2011 at 3:20 pm | Report abuse |
  3. enuffisenuff

    Not to go off topic....but isn't HLN a big supporter of trying to get rid of bullying?...and even had open discussions with viewers with Rachel and Mike Gallegos. But yet they looked the other way when their very own is engaged in bullying her panel or any callers that don't agree with her views. So she is the biggest bully of them even to the point of having a lady commit suicide after she berrated her on the air.

    The only way she will go away is if her ratings drop or causes CNN to give lots of money to lawsuits. It's pretty sad when someone had to go ou of their way to make a NancyGracemustdie website to get people to wake up to this womans daily witch hunts.

    And for the people that say us men are scared of a strong woman. We would stand up to her if we ever could get our calls in but we are at a disadvantage by 1) being male and 2) not willing to suck up to her before we ask a question. And the people willing to do that are truly sad and are sheep following their fake sheppard.

    July 8, 2011 at 3:22 pm | Report abuse |
    • victoriasmom

      what? HOW is nancy responsible for someones suicide!!!!!!!! r u out of ur mind!!! I dont write much on line, but this is THE CRAZIEST thing ive ever heard!! PLEASE DONT BLAME ANYONE FOR AN OBVIOUS SICK WEAK PERSONS MIND

      July 8, 2011 at 3:38 pm | Report abuse |
    • mphw

      Thanks so much for your intelligent reply. Yes, Nancy is a big bully and as a lawyer she should know better than to criticize this jury. There are crazy people that do crazy things and people like Nancy Grace are feeding their delusional, aggressive and bullying tendencies. We have a system of justice that demands proof beyond a reasonalbe doubt - thank goodness it does. It's better to acquit one guilty person than condemn one innocent person to death. As long as we have an irreversible penalty in play (death), we have to take extreme caution that someone who is innocent is not put to death. As for the prosecution's case - where is it?! You can't make an informed decision based on how someone acts after an event. No cause of death, no motive (dispite their lame try at that), no evidence of prior child abuse, no chloroform or any indication of where she got chloroform, how she made chloroform - if you look it up, it's not that easy! The prosecution was arrogant and overreaching and got a just decision. Obviously something terrible happened to that baby - she's dead - we don't know Casey's part in it and we never will. That's how it goes in this imperfect life.

      July 8, 2011 at 3:50 pm | Report abuse |
    • mphw

      oh, and all this hysteria over people we don't know - and hopefully will never meet. Here's an idea – if you are so upset and distraught over this poor little girl, how about doing something fun with your child? Or maybe taking a niece or nephew or child of friend on a fun outing? How about exposing them to some positive energy rather than dragging them to a rally where you hold up a sign about how a baby was killed and dumped in the woods. I've seen kids at these rallies and in front of the Anthony house. Nice parenting.....

      July 8, 2011 at 3:55 pm | Report abuse |
    • enuffisenuff

      @ Victoriasmom. You need to check the facts before you blast me for something that has been known for a few years. Mrs. Duckett filed a cival lawsuit against Nancy Grace. Either you live under a rock or in denial like the rest of the Disgraces sheep. Pssst you are following a sad and pathetic person of the media.

      July 8, 2011 at 4:08 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Rachel Vincent

    I was first stunned, then shock and confused , then i was outraged, now I am in pray asking God for understanding, Do you all realize God Will forgive her if she ask for his forgiveness?  I ask God to 1st give those of us who are affected by the injustice to Caylee, find in our hearts to relax and let Gods will be done.  2nd  put in Casey heart the remorse she should feel over all of this.  3rd that Casey feel in her heart to confess her sin to the all might judge above. 4th. That she Repent and live a just life so that all the Glory may Go to the Creator our God in Heaven. So we may see God can do all things. 
    This is just my way of dealing with this! I am not tryin to offend anyone or make an issue of religion!  I pray you all find productive way to deal!  

    July 8, 2011 at 3:28 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Elizabeth

    Hi Nancy, this has truly touched all of us and thank you for always being there for the victims: My daughterMelissa, posted this and brings tears to my eyes, With duct tape and trash bags you threw me away. What more is there to say? Alone in the woods is where I was kept for six long months and you still haven't wept. "Bella Vita" that's what your tattoo said, not a care in the world, where I laid dead. Every night Jesus rocks me to sleep and makes a promise I know He will keep. "Don't worry, everything will be fine, in the end Justice is Mine", Love Caylee

    July 8, 2011 at 3:31 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Numyorangay

    Nancy Grace contributes to the toxins that eventually seep into our psyches. . .look at this woman. . .feel her aura. . .she's satan's bride out for a buck.

    July 8, 2011 at 3:31 pm | Report abuse |
    • victoriasmom

      IF this is so true...how would you know unless ur watching her yourself. there are many tv personalities that i dont like. know what i do??? i dont watch!! common sense

      July 8, 2011 at 3:40 pm | Report abuse |
  7. EBF

    Alot of people don't agree with the verdict. But Nancy Grace should stop inflaming the public. Enough with Casey,
    all of this publicity is exactly what she wants! It's over, let it rest Nancy!

    July 8, 2011 at 3:32 pm | Report abuse |
  8. liz

    Nancy Grace never met a defendant she thought was not guilty and given the derogatory way she has spoken about the Jury in this case she has no respect for the system either. The Jury followed the LAW if you have 'reasonable doubt' you must, must find the defendant Not Guilty not withstanding what Nancy Grace thinks she knows. Also about the length of the deliberations hands down had they only been out fifteen minutes and came back guilty Nancy Grace would be just fine with the amount of time they took. Another thing if HLN was losing money on the coverage of this case instead of making money hand over fist we would all be going "Casey, who ?"

    July 8, 2011 at 3:42 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Patrick

    I used to think Nancy Grace was a big ole loudmouth. I still do. And having heard what she's said about this case, I'm thinking America needs more loudmouths exactly like her.

    July 8, 2011 at 3:43 pm | Report abuse |
  10. victoriasmom

    you people amaze me. you dont respect anyones opinion and bash them for having one.....but you certainly are expressing yours loud and clear....and not in a respectful way either. if you hate nancy so much how do you know so much about her and why are you here?? You ppl that hate her so much are boosting her ratings by watching. duhh

    July 8, 2011 at 3:46 pm | Report abuse |
    • enuffisenuff

      It's hard to not see her when her HLN colleagues air snipits from her show. I like waking up with Robin Meade and she covers the news and use video footage from various HLN evening shows. It's hard to avoid the loud mouth Grace when I like watching Robin's morning show. It's pretty funny when people from CNN are dogging on her like Anderson Cooper on his ridiculist commentary talking about Willie Nelson's pot plea deal be revoked by the judge then saying something along the lines let's not get Nancy Grace worked up over this or she will call someone "Pot Mom". But Mark Garregos cut the cake when he called her a fake blonde former prosecutor that doesn't know what she is talking about half the time.

      July 8, 2011 at 4:54 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Celeste

    Get off Nancy's back. She is right, Casey is a lousy mother and a murderer. How can you not report your child is missing. And remember, it was her mother who reported it, not Casey. As far as she was concerned, the chld was gone and forgotten. I watched the trial every day and I saw all the evidence, and I m convinced she did it. Those jurors should have never been allowed on the jury. In NJ you don't get to be a juror if you have a criminal record or your close relatives do. Also, 2 jurors said they didn't like to judge people. None of the jurors seem to have any common sense and it's obvious they didn't want to spend any time on the case. This case has made many people, including me, lose all confidence in the judicial system.

    July 8, 2011 at 3:47 pm | Report abuse |
  12. victoriasmom

    not guilty DOESNT MEAN INNOCENCE!! DEAL WITH IT u sick casey lovers. WE WILL get the last laugh, u will see!!

    July 8, 2011 at 3:54 pm | Report abuse |
  13. colleenLynn

    Nancy Grace needs to stop criticizing everything that she herself does not like. The majority isn't always the right way to go. For Nancy to say that the jury got it wrong, shows that she does not believe in the judicial system, but only in what she wants to believe. I would like to know why she is no longer a prosecutor or a judge any more. Nancy does not care what other people think or her or any one else, and had done far too much name calling towards other people, including some of her peers. SOME of the advice that she has given to those she does not like, she needs to take some of that advice herself. She is rude and VERY disrespectful to other people in conversations as well. I see Nancy as an extremely poor example of professionals.

    July 8, 2011 at 4:12 pm | Report abuse |
  14. colleenLynn

    Nancy Grace needs to stop criticizing everything that she herself does not like. The majority isn't always the right way to go. For Nancy to say that the jury got it wrong, shows that she does not believe in the judicial system, but only in what she wants to believe. I would like to know why she is no longer a prosecutor or a judge any more. Nancy does not care what other people think or her or any one else, and had done far too much name calling towards other people, including some of her peers. SOME of the advice that she has given to those she does not like, she needs to take some of that advice herself. She is rude and VERY disrespectful to other people in conversations as well. I see Nancy as an extremely poor example of professionalism..

    July 8, 2011 at 4:14 pm | Report abuse |
  15. mofo

    why are you so mean to your colleagues on the show?

    July 8, 2011 at 4:16 pm | Report abuse |
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