July 7th, 2011
08:17 PM ET

Lightning strikes tree near Caylee Anthony memorial site

Hours after Casey Anthony learned on Thursday that she will leave jail next week, lightning apparently struck a tree next to a makeshift memorial in honor of her slain daughter,  Caylee.

No one saw lightning strike the pine tree on Suburban Drive in Orange County, Florida, where teddy bears and flowers mark the spot where 2-year-old Caylee's remains were found on December 11, 2008.

But long, diagonal strips of exposed wood scarred the tall pine tree, WESH reported, and bits of bark lay scattered across the road.

"It could be a sign from the angels that they aren't happy with what's happened," a visitor to the site told the Orlando Sentinel newspaper. "The rain, the lightning, the storm - it's the heavens indicating they aren't happy."

There are more lightning strikes in Florida per square mile than in any other state, according to weather.com.

A Pinellas County jury acquitted Anthony, 24, of murder and manslaughter charges Tuesday in the death of her daughter. The same jury convicted her of four charges of obstruction of justice for lying to police during the search for Caylee.

Judge Belvin Perry sentenced Anthony to four years in jail - one year for each of her four convictions - but with credit for nearly three years already served and good behavior, her release date was set for Wednesday, July 13, a court spokeswoman said.

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Filed under: Casey Anthony • Crime • Weather
soundoff (1,086 Responses)
  1. az we no

    maybe it's caylee that's upset, and she will do what needs to be done

    July 7, 2011 at 10:35 pm | Report abuse |
  2. stef

    Is it me or is CNN getting more and more ridiculous?

    July 7, 2011 at 10:37 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Joe Morgan

    Yes god do not like ugly and casey anthony will get hers!!!!!!!

    July 7, 2011 at 10:38 pm | Report abuse |
  4. BenT

    Can anyone explain why lightning striking a tree next to a child's memorial is the top story on the website of one of the nation's top media outlets? Lightning struck a headstone at a nearby cemetery last year–didn't make the local paper.

    July 7, 2011 at 10:38 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jimmyk

      First thing I was thinking. This is probably just a huge coincidence.

      "There are more lightning strikes in Florida per square mile than in any other state, according to weather.com."

      July 7, 2011 at 10:42 pm | Report abuse |
    • They pulled in traffic = you lose

      Don't criticism the editorial decisions of CNN's LGBT staff you fool!

      July 7, 2011 at 10:51 pm | Report abuse |
    • Stu

      In case you haven't noticed...everything about the Casey Anthony case is front page. Most likely the writer thought it was a sign from heaven. Don't you find it odd that lightning struck of all places right next to the Caylee Anthony memorial? Why there? Coincidence? Some don't think so. I have no clue. It just seems odd to me.

      July 7, 2011 at 10:51 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Realist

    It's hard to understand how find it necessary to turn heven, angels, gods and other irrational and silly notions to explain a simple act of nature. The girl was found not guilty; in this country that should be then end of this crap

    July 7, 2011 at 10:38 pm | Report abuse |
    • Fly Guy in SJ


      Funny that you should call yourself that, considering how disconnected from reality you are.

      July 7, 2011 at 10:41 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jimmyk

      How is he disconnected from reality? Unless you have proof that Casey Anthony did intentionally murder Caylee, you're just a deranged idiot like the majority of Americans flaming her right now.

      July 7, 2011 at 10:44 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Tamm


    July 7, 2011 at 10:39 pm | Report abuse |
  7. hannah1

    Nancy Grace, CNN, and all the rest of you media hounds enough already. We have heard enough of your sensationionlized scewing of the facts, and bringing extra unfactual drama to the world. Further in America we believe in the right to a fair trial both in the courts and the media as well every person being innocent until proven guilty. As a former prosecutor I would have expected Nancy Grace to know that. Instead from day one even before an arrest or a trial she declared to the world of Casey's guilt and then went about to prove it whether true or not. The prosecution's case was flawed, trying her for 1st degree murder when we did not have a motive, a body or the actual facts. Oh and the cloriform search was made by her mother who stated that on the stand. Yes Casey has made mistakes. I believe that she lacked maturity back then. She got into a lot of trouble. Perhaps even she was not ready to be a parent. Yes she did some things after her daughter went missing that were gross but that a murderer does not make. She and her parent's failed to report her daughter missing. And forgive me but some of the people in her circle of family and friends seem fishy to me. Nancy Grace how do you explain a mistress who comes forward to tell the court about a conversation a factual conversation between her and a certain man in which he stated it was an accident. She has nothing to gain. Then there were prosecution experts who could not agree. The jury made it's decision. The lack of evidence was clear and in America where we have a justice system in which every person is innocent until proven guilty what other alternative would you expect. If every juror convicted a defendent without absolute evidence and proof we might have thousands of innocent people in jail fighting for there freedom. And during all of this media sensationalized crap the focus was put on a women, a court and reporting instead of on a little girl who needed us to be level headed. Whether we agree with the verdict or not it is time to stop. Whether we like Casey or not it is time to move on. That means no wishing lightening would strike on her, no threatning her life. We need to stop. The media sensationalizing needs to stop and perhaps self reflection is order. Just grow up. Instead let us find a way to use all of this energy in a positive manner. Perhaps by advocating Kaylee's Law, volunteering your services or giving money to a charity in Kaylee's name or yes even praying for Casey. Praying that Casey whether guilty or not will get some help, change her life, and become a better person. Pray that out of this we will all become kinder, more loving, gracious people who will live each day not just for ourselves but for a better world. I believe that would be a wonderful way to pay tribute to such a special little girl.

    July 7, 2011 at 10:39 pm | Report abuse |
    • The Big Troll


      July 7, 2011 at 10:43 pm | Report abuse |
    • Carol

      Hubris–who do you think is going to read all you cr*p?

      July 7, 2011 at 10:44 pm | Report abuse |
    • bluebird

      Here here! Well done!

      July 7, 2011 at 10:46 pm | Report abuse |
    • Mark

      nobody is going to read all of that, this is a post not a novel section

      July 7, 2011 at 10:46 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jimmyk

      Truth. Glad to know I'm not the only sane person around.

      July 7, 2011 at 10:47 pm | Report abuse |
    • She has Daddy issues

      Nancy Grace has no grace and an ugly face who flares her nostrils to put her opponents in their place!

      July 7, 2011 at 10:49 pm | Report abuse |
    • Fly Guy in SJ

      Her mother lied on the stand, that's obvious. It was demonstrated that she was at work on the days/times she claimed to have made that search at home. I'm a sysadmin, so I know well how easy that is to establish. I don't totally blame her for lying; many people would do that if their son or daughter was being charged with a capital crime, even if they privately believed said offspring was probably guilty.

      Casey Anthony either killed her daughter, or was negligent and/or complicit in her death. The only plausible explanation for her behavior in the month that followed is that she was happy about it. I'm going with the murder theory, it's the only thing that adequately explains the chloroform and her mom's lying.

      Should we pray for Casey Anthony? Yes. Jesus said He came to save sinners, not the righteous, but He also requires of us that we admit our sin and change our lives. He doesn't hand out free passes. Like people at AA meetings stand up in front of the group and say "I'm an alcoholic" so, too, do we have to stand up in front of God and say "I'm a sinner."

      Can she obtain forgiveness? Yes, if she wants it. And I hope she does, because a lost soul is a tragedy, truly.

      July 7, 2011 at 10:51 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jim Davis

      B.S. !!! Too Bad it's no longer like The Old West. They'd String her Up, then put her in an open Coffin and set her on Display like they did Billy The Kid. "oh no !!!! That would be UNCIVILIZED !!!! ". "We couldn't do THAT....sniff.....sniff.". Where is Clint and Bronson when ya need'm !!

      July 7, 2011 at 11:02 pm | Report abuse |
    • jaci

      Well said! I always thought it was an accident and that Casey lost her mind for awhile. Sure we may not like what she did or that it was right to lie. I believe that she is a truly misguided very young woman who really had no boundaries set in her life. Big mistakes were probably made by her parents in her disipline as a young girl, probably not ever learning to take responsibility for her actions, and to lie when she was in trouble. This kind of behaviour is learned. The lynch mob mentality I see in the media is absolutely discusting. Nancy Grace being the ring leader promoting injustice to many, and Casey should sue her for slander. Anyone who adores Ms Grace needs to give their head a shake, tune out and get a life.

      July 7, 2011 at 11:03 pm | Report abuse |
    • CriticalThinkingPowersActivate

      Agreed! Thank you for sharing some practicality and common sense. Right now we need a lot more of that amongst a nation of emotional basket cases and wannabe executioners. Thanks!

      July 8, 2011 at 1:45 pm | Report abuse |
  8. omnipotent fishtaco

    Nuce thought process CNN...newsflash...a truckload of radiator hoses overturned near Kim Kardashian...must mean she's single again...

    July 7, 2011 at 10:39 pm | Report abuse |
  9. cj

    everyone the odds are high for lighting to strike but the odds for it to strike right after she finds out about getting out of jail are low. you have to remember there is no tellin if we even know a peace of what god really is there are other solar systems waiting to be discovered.

    July 7, 2011 at 10:40 pm | Report abuse |
  10. casey

    i agree, this is not news at all, let that poor girl rest in peace CNN.

    July 7, 2011 at 10:40 pm | Report abuse |
  11. bob

    If she killed her daughter? She will pay for it when she gets old and setting on a lawn chair...it will come at her like that lightning hitting that tree.....And then she will have to answer to the (spirit) person she murdered...

    July 7, 2011 at 10:41 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Deby D

    Shame on CNN for running a totally worthless and inflamatory "story". This is not news. This is sensationalism.

    July 7, 2011 at 10:41 pm | Report abuse |
    • It needs to be said

      The predominantly LGBT staff of CNN LOVE drama and sensationalism

      July 7, 2011 at 10:46 pm | Report abuse |
  13. janine lewis

    Odd yet ,beautiful at the same time. You better believe that baby is talking!

    July 7, 2011 at 10:42 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Stephen

    A sign from the angels, I knew it! Lightning hits a tree and everybody wants to make it about something, which is Stone Age mentality. Lightning hits stuff all the time in reality. I don't understand why everyone thought this case was a slam-dunk conviction. There was no physical evidence, it's astounding. Everyone is too emotional.

    July 7, 2011 at 10:43 pm | Report abuse |
  15. No.

    Bulls hit Bull sh it Bull sh it

    July 7, 2011 at 10:45 pm | Report abuse |
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