A juror in the Casey Anthony case has broken her silence on acquitting the mother of murdering her two-year-old, speaking to ABC after it treated her and four other jurors to a trip to Disney World.
ABC is a unit of the Walt Disney Company.
The juror, Jennifer Ford, a 32-year-old nursing student, said that jurors were “sick to their stomachs,” ABC News reported.
“I did not say she was innocent,” said Ford, who was juror No. 3.
“I just said there was not enough evidence. If you cannot prove what the crime was, you cannot determine what the punishment should be.”
Anthony, 25, was found not guilty of aggravated manslaughter and felony child abuse but will be sentenced today for lesser crimes after she was guilty of lying to police.
Because she has already served more than two and a half years in jail, mostly in isolation, she is expected to walk free from the Orlando courthouse.
The seven female and five male jurors spent six weeks isolated in an Orlando hotel and were so overwhelmed with emotion after the verdict they were unable to front a press conference, she said.
Lynn Ford, Jennifer Ford’s mother, said ABC did not pay Ford but treated her and four others to a trip to Disney World, The New York Times reported.
Jeff Ashton, the 30-year veteran prosecutor in the case, said on “The View” television program that he was “shocked” by the not-guilty verdict.
“I think ultimately it came down to the evidence,” he said. “I think ultimately it came down to cause of death”, the New York Times reported.
Talk is now focused on how she will live her future given she has been vilified throughout the world. Her parents rose after the verdict, showed no emotion, and left the courtroom.
“Anthony will always be dogged by the belief that she killed her child,” said Lewis Katz, a law professor at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland. “She will never lead a normal life,” he was reported by Associated Press as saying.
The AP reports:
Alternate juror Russell Huekler said he feels compassion for Anthony and hopes she gets help because she can “no longer live a life of lies.”
Huekler told The Associated Press he was shocked to learn of the public’s anger over the jury’s acquittal of Anthony on a murder charge.
“Those 12 jurors, they worked really, really hard,” said Huekler, who did not vote on the verdict but sat through more than 33 days of testimony as an alternate. “I’m sure they looked at the law and the evidence that was presented and unfortunately, the prosecution didn’t meet their burden of proof.”
Anthony’s attorneys did not return calls from the AP for comment, AP reported.