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. BrendaK

    Can she finally be in 'gen pop' until Wednesday? 'Cause, she was acquitted, so surely she doesn't need to be in protective holding anymore. I'm quite sure the prisoners in the general prison population would be only too happy to see her, and would welcome her in the manner she so richly deserves.

    July 8, 2011 at 6:08 am | Report abuse |
  2. blabbermouth

    There was bird seed on the ground underneath the bird feeder. I wonder who put it there???? Could it have been the deer who jumped the 6 foot fence? Could it have been the hawk who likes to watch the small birds?
    Could it have been the BIRD? Gee, I never saw them do it so it must not be them.

    July 8, 2011 at 6:17 am | Report abuse |
    • Bible Clown

      If you didn't see anything, then it was certainly God and you should me made a saint immediately.

      July 8, 2011 at 7:43 am | Report abuse |
  3. Zac

    The fact this lightning strike is even news is just utterly ridiculous. It underscores how far the media will go to sensationalize things. Talk about reaching.

    July 8, 2011 at 6:22 am | Report abuse |
  4. ron

    Wow someone took the time out of their day to actually write a report on lightning hitting a tree. Good work. I feel more informed from having read this. When do the aliens attack?

    July 8, 2011 at 6:33 am | Report abuse |
  5. Apocatequil

    Wow, god seems to really have it in for the poor kid.

    July 8, 2011 at 6:33 am | Report abuse |
    • Apocatequil

      ""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."

      Could be! or maybe the pine tree was gay.

      July 8, 2011 at 6:46 am | Report abuse |
    • doctore0

      Gawd strikes tree, he aint happy ... but he is happy about the 30K of children who DIE EVERYDAY.

      July 8, 2011 at 6:57 am | Report abuse |
  6. In Reason I Trust

    Wow, CNN still isn't embarrassed enough to take down this "article". Somehow the New York Times has failed to jump on this breaking story.

    July 8, 2011 at 6:44 am | Report abuse |
  7. Life

    uneducated juors let this woman walk for murder! I am praying this lady wins and EVERY penny Casey makes from this case 50% of the royalty goes to Zenaida Fernandez Gonzalez! Praying for Zenaida!

    July 8, 2011 at 6:57 am | Report abuse |
    • Tina

      Sadly. the jurors did not have the benefit of Nancy Grace telling them what to think. Instead they had to rely on the law and evidence. What a travesty!

      July 8, 2011 at 8:19 am | Report abuse |
  8. unowhoitsme

    Lightening strikes all over Florida all the time...has nothing to do with Caylee.

    July 8, 2011 at 7:04 am | Report abuse |
    • Bryan W

      For all you people that are saying "lightning strikes in Florida every day", here are some numbers for you...

      The Tampa-Orlando area is the most active lightning region in the country, receiving about 50 strikes per sq mile per year. The 15 ft radius around the memorial is about 707 sq ft, or 0.0025% of a sq mile.

      So on average, this circle around the memorial has about a 0.127% (1 in 789) chance of getting at least one lightning strike during the course of an entire year.

      So during the 12-hr window following Casey's sentencing, the area around the memorial has a 0.000174% (1 in 575,822) chance of being struck by lightning, on average.

      Happens all the time, huh?

      July 8, 2011 at 8:47 am | Report abuse |
  9. blueSkyNJ

    Justice will be served by God. R.I.P. Caylee.

    July 8, 2011 at 7:06 am | Report abuse |
  10. joann

    No,way should Casey Anthony have her own show.It,will only bring in money for her lifestyle,she is used to,and nothing else.I say,she should of got the DEATH PENALTY.And,gotten her judgement through God. JoAnn Bartholomew

    July 8, 2011 at 7:07 am | Report abuse |
  11. God

    How did your so called "God" and "Angels" get involved? This was from weather, we all learn from the 2nd grade in science class.

    July 8, 2011 at 7:11 am | Report abuse |
    • Deon

      Do you honestly think man controls the weather? #Fail

      July 8, 2011 at 8:21 am | Report abuse |
    • uranidiot

      @Deon. He's not saying that you idiot. He's saying that it's not controlled by god or man. You are the one who fails!

      July 8, 2011 at 9:29 pm | Report abuse |
  12. couchtater

    Whatever happened to the saying "the accused is innocent until PROVEN guilty in a court of law"? Nancy Grace needs to quit her job & raise her own kids instead of having the nannies raise them. Raising kids is like a crap shoot, you try in instill in them all the good things you were taught, but in the end they are their own person. I do NOT believe Casey murdered Caylee, I think it was an accident & she doesn't have the mental capacity to handle dramatic events. Plus the fact that everyone reacts & mourns differently. If she is truly the monster Nancy Grace has made her out to be, she'll end up back in jail before you know it.

    July 8, 2011 at 7:29 am | Report abuse |
  13. Bible Clown

    Angels knocked a tree down next to an office building near me last night, too, and some atheist police cleaned it up instead of erecting a shrine on the spot.

    July 8, 2011 at 7:42 am | Report abuse |
  14. Bible Clown

    This is one of the saddest things I've ever seen passed off as news. I guess 'News of the World's' position is vacant and CNN is applying for it?

    July 8, 2011 at 7:45 am | Report abuse |
  15. Laura

    In my opinion, Casey was guilty. My husband has patiently put up with me watching this nightmare. He believes she is guilty as well. The verdict was unbelievable and I am still in shock. I have tried to hold back tears many times, especially realizing that there was no justice for Caylee. Maybe God has another plan in mind to seek out justice. I can't imagine how the jury couldn't come to that conclusion as well-just by her uncaring nonchalant way, especially the women. Living life like she had no child at all and lying to everyone about the whereabouts of her child-that alone is proof enough! Notice how her appearance changed the day after the Non Guilty verdict-letting her hair down and smiling. That look on her face said it all-"I got away with it! I am such a good liar." She cares only about herself and how she looks to men- and any man she ends up with is a fool and only looking for one thing! She is a liar and a thief and if they can't see that, then they deserve to be with her. Her behavior is anything but normal. Wouldn't a normal Mother who truly loved her child show emotion? I have never seen it even from the beginning-she only appears to be extremely happy that she is free and gets to do what she wants without the child. The snotty way she talks to her parents who had done everything to care for her and her child is very disrespectful! Now Casey is going to get the "Beautiful LIfe" she wanted, however, all the money and fame in the world doesn't compare to the love of a child. No man can truly love a woman like that! I only pray that Caylee is in Heaven in God's loving arms and found a Mother who truly cares for her. God bless her little soul.

    July 8, 2011 at 7:45 am | Report abuse |
    • Bible Clown

      Actually, you only know what was presented to you by media, and don't say you never heard the word 'tot mom.' Nancy Grace went after her like a rabid hyena and painted her as a horrible person, but she may actually be nothing like that. You feel a deep hatred and resentment for this girl that may be completely undeserved, and in any case the trial is over and I'd advise you to move on if you can, or seek professional help if you can't. Nancy Grace would like to see someone shoot a juror or Casey herself so she can profit from it, so don't be the shooter.

      July 8, 2011 at 7:50 am | Report abuse |
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