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. 18th Cent

    We should all feel so lucky that we live in a country where we don't go around executing people, because the media says to do so...but we are almost there.

    Aim your anger at the prosecution for their failure to do there job.

    July 10, 2011 at 2:19 pm | Report abuse |
    • Mark

      All of you rightous yea who's......if Nancy Grace didn't care about justice for children, there would be NONE! You, people sound like you believe that harming YOUR children happens! What if she was a Black or Hispanic, indigent, female or male.....I would bet 100% of you and the jury would convict! Take a google search and pull up HOW many CHILDREN are killed everyday.....it is scarey......killing children MUST STOP. Thank you Nancy Grace.

      July 10, 2011 at 3:40 pm | Report abuse |
    • enuffisenuff

      My problem with "Pot Mom" Nancy Grace she goes to length of unethical behavior and stretches the truth and has been wrong more than once and I have a problem with her dragging someones name through the mood. Why not wait to see if the person is convicted in a courtroom before the slinging slander and deflamation to her audience to assist in growing hate towards the person charged with murder. I just think it was funny that all her family and friends got up on the stand and none of them said she abused her child. I have hard time thinking someone woke up one day and said I am going to kill my kid so I can live "A Beautiful Life". That's why my gut believes the accident theory over premeditated or Manslaughter theory. She had a support system to watch that kid...to kill her kid makes no sense to me. And the 31 days just makes me think she panicked because she is highly immature.

      July 10, 2011 at 4:20 pm | Report abuse |
    • Oleg Khaghani

      halleluya

      July 10, 2011 at 8:48 pm | Report abuse |
    • Tax payer

      I agree with 18th cent.. You Nancy Grace following people that are so bias to the media and believe everything they say
      to be true.. ( i.e example like Nancy Grace ). I got 3 words for you "GET A LIFE"... I believe the jury got this one right..
      I believe someone in the Anthony family killed that baby but I don't believe it was "tot mom" however someone in this
      crupt family did kill her and then this family covered it up..

      July 10, 2011 at 9:12 pm | Report abuse |
    • Dee

      A pathetic reach for ratings but it works. Pathetic!! She doesn't care one iota who she throws under the bus and if you have witnessed her crap in the past, you would know GRACEless has even caused the suicide of one very young mother. Do your math people! NG is a monster!

      July 10, 2011 at 9:18 pm | Report abuse |
    • inadaze2

      18th cent Its the 1st Amendment you should Know because YOU sound like you are part of the defense just like a lot of these post's on here .......THEY would come to this site SHE LIED SHE LIED .... and she will offend AGAIN and again and again SHE HAS JOSE and MASON and THE JUMPING MONKEY on Speed DIAL ........................................ IF I WERE ON THE JURY I WOULD HAVE "HUNG IT" at least she would still be in JAIL

      July 10, 2011 at 9:24 pm | Report abuse |
    • Dee

      Terribly disgusted with this channel for showing her silly recap over and over and over and over this weekend. Nancy is to truth as oil is to water.

      July 10, 2011 at 9:28 pm | Report abuse |
    • enuffisenuff

      @ Dee.........It seems "Pot Moms" weekend special was already in the works before the verdict came in. They were sure of themselves that Casey Anthony would have been quilty of 1 of the 3 serious charges. Sometimes when you come off so arrogant and sure of yourself the man up stairs knocks you off your high horse. Did it humble "Pot Mom"??HECK NO she is still foaming at the mouth and spreading her hatred. She definitely is no Christian like she confesses to be. If she is she is doing some serious backsliding like the Michael Jackson Moonwalk.

      July 10, 2011 at 10:32 pm | Report abuse |
    • jana51608

      Ms. Grace is a bully. She has been leading the lynch mob against Casey Anthony since this story began. No, she doesn't have to agree with the jury, but in this case they were right. The prosecution failed to prove their case despite their junk "scientific" evidence and over-reaching charges. Grace's disdainful use of the term "tot mom" is insulting and arrogant. Her constant harping about Anthony's "guilt" throughout the trial shows that she has no concept of the principle of "innocent until proven guilty." Her capitalization on horrendous tragedies is disgusting. Watching TruTV throughout this trial was painful and distorted by the consistently one-sided pro-prosecution bias by the majority of commentators. Grace is only the most shrill and ignorant. In the future, please cover trials in a less sensational, more realistic way before anyone with an open mind and sense of fairness is too appalled to watch.

      July 10, 2011 at 11:14 pm | Report abuse |
    • Aileen

      Wham bam thank you, ma'am, my quietsons are answered!

      October 20, 2011 at 12:38 am | Report abuse |
    • llbaxc

      RGa3v3 mbidzgqzihur

      October 20, 2011 at 9:13 am | Report abuse |
    • zgmqhehoefl

      QtBLpT gglvehertvxh

      October 22, 2011 at 9:32 am | Report abuse |
  2. MartinT

    The problem with Nancy is that she invested SO much time and energy in beating Casey down and she was so smug about her conviction that Nancy ended up looking like an idiot when Casey was found not guilty. I think Nancy should be removed from HLN, just like Glen Beck was thrown off Fox. She is devisive and about as radical as Beck in her own way. I know she gets the ratings, and people LOVE her for being so outspoken, but I think she is a blowhard who should decide whether she wants to be a newsperson or a HACK, my money is on HACK.

    July 10, 2011 at 2:28 pm | Report abuse |
    • Mike from Calgary

      AMEN! THe Jury UNANIMOUSLY rejected the theory or story and the smugness of the prosecution by a vote of 12-0. Not a single juror, who got to look each witness in the eye, bought what they were selling ,,,, every one rejected soundly the persecutor unsupported case. As for Nancy Disgrace, she should move from the HLN.CNN to the Comedy Channel. She has a half empty glass appoach and alwasy sees the worst in people ... whether or not it is there. She is only happy when she can bring somebody down. The only delight in he life seems to be battering and harangueing young unsophisticated women like 21 year old Melinda Duckett whom she appears to have hounded to suicide. She'll only be happy now if some other harm comes to Caley! Nancy Disgrace could benefit more from appearing in a pshyciologists office than at a TV studio.

      July 10, 2011 at 9:26 pm | Report abuse |
  3. MartinT

    I thnk people need to get a life over this Casey Anthony thing. How many of you out there who are so outraged over the death of Caylee give a damn about all the kids in America who don't have health insurance, who go to bed hungry, who don't have a place to call home? How many of you ever give a moment's thought to the thousands of children who will die this week in African nations? My advice is turn this anger and frustration into something constructive and give a damn about children who are still alive, not one that has been dead for three years. People die, and once dead that's it. Care about something that matters will you?

    July 10, 2011 at 2:33 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Craig

    Nancy Grace does exploit children. She exploits their memory. Especially Caylee. Why call her TOT? She has a name.
    If she wants to speak on legal terms then she should stay within the confines of law as she took an oath to do.
    If she wants to be a commentator then let her give commentary. That is what she's being paid to do. She no longer is a prosecutor.

    July 10, 2011 at 3:25 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Craig

    In reply to Nancy Grace's assertion of freedom of speech......
    As a "journalist" she does have the right to report on public interest under fair reporting.

    Casey Anthony could sue Nancy Grace and CNN. In this country, to prove libel, you must do three things: (1) identify, (2) defame and (3) publish. Grace clearly identified Anthony...................... in fact, I'd go so far as to say she made this case of public opinion into what it is.

    By calling a person guilty of a crime when she isn't is pretty much defamatory on its face and is what they call a defamation per se case. Sure Nancy would settle out of court like she did only days before the last time she was sued!

    July 10, 2011 at 4:07 pm | Report abuse |
    • enuffisenuff

      I hope Casey goes all the way with a civil lawsuit and puts a dent in "Pot Mom's" pocketbook so she stays off the pot before she goes on the air. Because she has to be high when she comes off the way she is. Never seen such a narcissistic person on a news channel before she came around.

      July 10, 2011 at 4:29 pm | Report abuse |
    • D Sutton

      has anyone ever asked Nancy Grace why is she no longer a prosecutor?This women who calls herself a media commentator, is unethical and an embarrassment for CNN. she spouts off all along since Caylee was reported missing , She was convinced and spouted it that Casey was guilty before she even went to trial. well Nancy, are you eating crow now. Are you going to continue with this crap until this mom gets hurt or commits suicide, like the mom of the two and a half year old did. shame on you Nancy. Nancy Grace does not give a crap about the kids of America. She exploits them.

      July 10, 2011 at 9:37 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Craig

    Nancy Grace has been admonished 3 times in the state of Georgia for ethical misconduct. Ms. Grace is licensed to practice law in the State of D.C & Georgia. If you disagree with Ms. Grace's unethical actions please write to both those state bars as well as the American Bar association for Ms. Graces misconduct. Primarily for her demonstrating her disregard of the notions of due process and fairness as her license and oath does not allow.

    July 10, 2011 at 4:47 pm | Report abuse |
    • inadaze2

      CRAIG... /DEFENSE

      USE YOUR ENERGY TO FOLLOW CASEY ANTHONY AFTER SHE LEAVES JAIL .....because she will offend again so ummm geta life .....

      July 10, 2011 at 9:30 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Brad

    Since July 1 2008, Nancy Grace has earned an estimated:
    $ 155,462,671.68 US by exploiting the death of Caylee Anthony and the tragedy of the Anthony family!

    July 10, 2011 at 5:06 pm | Report abuse |
  8. mini fox

    is relieved that i am not the only one who feels this way about this LOSER Nancy DISgrace!

    July 10, 2011 at 5:22 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Brad

    Should Nancy Grace be prosecuted for inciting violence? In a general sense of words that's when someone utters words intended to create (deliberately or not) a verbal or physical confrontation by their mere usage.

    Incitement is a related doctrine, to "fighting words" allowing the government to prohibit advocacy of unlawful actions if the advocacy is both intended to and likely to cause immediate breach of the peace.

    The difference between incitement and fighting words is subtle, focusing on the intent of the speaker. Inciting speech is characterized by the speaker's intent to make someone else the instrument of her unlawful will. Fighting words, by contrast, are intended to cause the hearer to react to the speaker.

    July 10, 2011 at 5:26 pm | Report abuse |
    • Lisa

      Starting to question Nancy Graces mental health. She's a very angry person. Hunts the devil...... and knows when he dances.... WOW

      July 10, 2011 at 5:50 pm | Report abuse |
    • D Sutton

      No Kidding, Nancy Disgrace states " When the verdict was read, I saw the devil dance". Why Nancy do you know him?She is a big mouth, unethical person, whom has been reprimanded in the past. I think that Casey Anthony should sue this poor excuse of a human being.

      July 10, 2011 at 9:51 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Terry

    CNN and HLN has really progressed on a downward spiral in the last year. Several of their people, starting with Nancy Grace could really use a career change or more schooling. Glad I don't watch much of either station anymore 'cause most look like fools when their mouth opens.

    July 10, 2011 at 5:42 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Izzy

    Nancy continues to embellish the murder of her fiance, yet even in her own book wrote some very compelling contradictions that any person who was a victim of a crime would never forget! Especially when she keeps bringing it up and is the cause for her becoming a prosecutor!
    She's not fighting for victims of crimes. She's fighting a personal vendetta. The person who confessed to murdering her fiance was mildly retarted. Ms. Grace. Her fiances family did not. Nancy please get psychological help to finally put to rest your hatred. It's obviously eating you alive.

    July 10, 2011 at 6:45 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Lori Balowski

    Watch the jurors now Nancy. They are going to find ways of making money on the "Not Guilty" verdict. That was the plan. One of them has signed up on a $50,000 deal already.

    July 10, 2011 at 8:14 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Oleg Khaghani

    Nancy, you state the following response:

    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.

    Does this mean that you had become a prosecuter, for the sole purpose of seeing people punished? Does it mean that you admit to wanting to be, AS THE PROSECUTOR, "Judge, Jury, and Executioner? or, by this statement, do you mean that it is a pleasure for you to have been the one person who is responsible for having put away a person, who, BEYONND A REASONABLE DOUBT" did, in fact, knowingly and willingly committ a criminal act? Reason I ask is that, in my view, the ekement of "Instant Gratification: cannot logically exist, smply because the due process of law in any (but the simplest) felony trial takes a considerable amiunt of time.
    could you please explain your staement.

    July 10, 2011 at 8:46 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Eloe

    Nancy Grace is great. Long live freedom of speech, long live free press.

    July 10, 2011 at 10:15 pm | Report abuse |
    • enuffisenuff

      Freedom of speech comes with responsibility and NG has abused her power as media talking head. If you want that kind of brand of freedom of speech I suggest you find a time machine to take you back to Germany during WWII era. We don't execute our people if they can't even prove a murder occured in the first place.

      July 10, 2011 at 10:45 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Eloe

    Nancy Grace brings truth to people. All your efforts to discredit her only show how right she is. Nancy Grace is a hero, and if you don't like her show, watch looney toons istead.

    July 10, 2011 at 10:55 pm | Report abuse |
    • enuffisenuff

      You must be one of her callers that sucks up to "Pot Mom". At least the looney tune I watch is Bugs Bunny...you can watch your real life looney tune hero rant and rave like a 2 year old. She won't get me to keep her ratings going. She has been boycotted since she blasted the jury for their verdict. You and your hero just need to come to grips and move on.

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