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Casey Anthony could go free after murder acquittal

Jul 6, 2011 9:51:00 AM - thestate.com
Jurors aren't talking. Prosecutors are stunned that they lost. Defense attorneys are lashing out at the media. And Casey Anthony could be free by the weekend.

A case that involved years of forensic investigation, weeks of often highly technical testimony and untold hours of media analysis turned out to be a quick decision for the jurors weighing whether Anthony killed her toddler daughter. Early in their second day of deliberations, the 12 men and women concluded Tuesday the 25-year-old lied to investigators but wasn't guilty in her child's death.

Now Anthony waits to learn if she could spend her first night out of jail in almost three years since she was first accused in the case. She was only convicted of four misdemeanor counts of lying to investigators, and it's possible that Judge Belvin Perry could sentence her Thursday to time already served for those crimes. The four counts of lying to sheriff's deputies each carry a maximum sentence of one year.

Anthony has been in jail since her October 2008 arrest on first-degree murder charges. She avoided a possible death sentence thanks to her acquittal on the murder count. The case began in July 2008 when Caylee Anthony was reported missing.

"I'm very happy for Casey, ecstatic for her and I want her to be able to grieve and grow and somehow get her life back together," defense attorney Jose Baez said Tuesday. "I think this case is a perfect example of why the death penalty does not work ... Murder is not right, no matter who does it."

USA, South Carolina: (Latest Stories)