How did Caylee Anthony actually die? That question may never be answered, especially if her death was not a tragic drowning accident covered up by her family. But the not guilty verdict shows that even a sequestered jury, focused on the evidence and presumably not distracted by the media frenzy, could not reach a conclusion they could live with by sending Casey Anthony to prison for murder without solid facts to back up that decision.
The pathologist who examined Caylee’s body, Werner Spitz, is now on record as saying the jury “came back with the only decision that made sense in the case” because her badly decomposed body yielded no definitive clues as to what killed her.
This is a rare case of a jury following the law to the letter and not filling in the gaps the prosecution couldn’t hide.
But theories abound. The jury heard a lot of evidence about how chloroform may have been used on Caylee on a regular basis to put her to sleep. The speculation is that Casey Anthony made her own chloroform, from common household chemicals, to knock Caylee out so her mother would be free to leave the house and party the night away.
The theory is that Caylee was accidentally smothered to death and the family frantically covered up the death by disposing of the body and lying to police. Again, the jury didn’t buy it without absolute proof.
Naturally, rumors of even more sinister reasons for using chloroform are running rampant. Stories of suppressed evidence the jury was not exposed to run the gamut from boyfriends knocking out Caylee to have sex with her mother, to horrific tales of doping the child so that family members, or strangers, could use her for a child pornography ring.
But until the full trial record is released, there’s no way of coming to a different conclusion than what the jury itself did.
What killed Caylee Anthony? The world may never know.
Image courtesy of Wikipedia