Jose Baez as Judge Perry’s Pinata

Listening to testimony yesterday, it became apparent that Casey Anthony took living for the moment to an all new high.  In the first thirty-one days following Caylee’s death, she repeatedly told her mother that she could see Caylee tomorrow, or the next day.  She knew her mother would never see Caylee again, nonetheless, she kept manfacturing lies to postpone the moment of reckoning, one day at a time.  Casey never seemed to give a thought to what the future would bring.

One of the witnesses who drove that point home was Casey’s brother Lee Anthony.  The state had to work long and hard to extract the answers they wanted from Lee.  They battled through objections, sidebars and Lee’s faulty memory and finally got Lee to tell them what Casey said on July 15, 2008–the night Cindy reported Caylee missing.  Casey told him that she was upset with her mother because Cindy called her an “unfit mother” and referred to Caylee as a “mistake, but the best mistake Casey ever made.”

I couldn’t help but wonder what was behind Lee’s inability to recall the events of that dramatic night.  Has he worked hard for three years to forget the pain of that unpleasant evening, thus, making it difficult to recall any details?  Or was Lee’s lapse of memory merely convenient and contrived?

Once again, Jose Baez voluntarily assumed the role of Judge Perry’s pinata.  At one point, he objected to playing the unredacted audiotape of Casey’s jailhouse conversations with her parents.  And in a replay of earlier court hearings, Perry rebuked him for still not taking motion deadlines seriously.  He squirmed as the judge pointed to the length of time he had to prepare.

Baez whined: “We’ve been litigating this case tooth and nail for three years,” protesting that the defense team had not been sitting around doing nothing.

Judge Belvin Perry showed no mercy.  Deadline missed: tapes admitted as is.  Then, Perry brought the whole proceedings to a screeching halt with the first question out of Jose Baez’s mouth in his cross examination of lead investigator Yuri Melich.  Baez asked: “Have you ever gone by a different name, Dick Tracy Orlando?”

That was a reference to the time when Melich was at home in September 2008 recovering from a broken leg and signed on to the chat group Websleuths. (He was reprimanded for this activity by the Orange County Sheriff’s Office.) Baez argued that the participation on that forum impugned the credibility of the witness.  Perry pressed for specifics based in the law–asking for statements that demonstrated Melich’s bias against the defendant or a witness.

Baez pointed to the investigator’s comment that a missing person’s investigation is like a “murder investigation without a body;” and Melich’s statement about to wanting to find Caylee “to bring closure to her family.”  The judge ruled that neither entry nor any of his other contributions were impeachable according to the definition specified in the law and that Dick Tracy should be mentioned no more.

Baez is like a busy beaver building a dam with rotting sticks–he keeps trying to stop the flow of justice for Caylee but the truth keeps busting through.


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