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Casey Anthony Breaks Down in Court; Casey`s Attorney Speaks Out

Aired December 11, 2009 - 19:00:00   ET



JANE VELEZ-MITCHELL, HOST (voice-over): Tonight, an ISSUES prime-time exclusive. Earthshaking insight into the Casey Anthony Case. Tonight, I`ll sit down with Casey`s now-famous defense attorney, Mr. Jose Baez. His client is accused of killing her beautiful little daughter, Caylee. Her body was found dumped near the Anthony home last December. The case has sparked national outrage. And Baez has become a magnet for media attention.

Tonight, Jose Baez reveals his blockbuster defense strategy. But it`s highly controversial. He`s now focusing on the man who found little Caylee`s body. What does Baez think of the investigation? And what`s his plan of attack? Nothing is off-limits, from Zanny the nanny to Roy Kronk, the meter reader. We`re digging for inside information on the latest defense allegations.

Is the defense actually saying cops should consider the possibility of another suspect?

And we`ll go inside Jose`s relationship with Casey Anthony. He`s defending a suspected child killer, viewed in the media as public enemy No. 1. How does he explain the mountain of evidence and Casey`s odd behavior after her child went missing? The party pictures, the chloroform, and the smell of death. And why on earth didn`t Casey report her daughter missing for an entire month?

Plus, from an unknown lawyer to the national spotlight, Baez has been hammered by the media. How does he feel in the white-hot glare of the spotlight?

We`re all over the story, asking all the questions in this prime-time exclusive.

ISSUES starts now.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Tonight, emotions erupt in court as never before. Casey Anthony breaks down, sobbing uncontrollably, exactly one year after her daughter`s remains were found, and my prime-time exclusive interview with her lightning rod of an attorney, Jose Baez is coming right up.

But first, the latest from today`s extraordinarily dramatic hearing. The defense is fighting to get the death penalty off the table. Casey pleaded not guilty to killing little Caylee, but she wept, and I mean hysterically, shuddering, as the prosecutor described her little daughter`s last moments in heart-wrenching detail.


JEFF ASHTON, ASSISTANT STATE ATTORNEY: Could Caylee have understood what was happening to her? Did she try to resist? Could her killer see the fear in her eyes as the tape was applied? These are questions only the jurors will be able to answer in this case.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: There was more drama, just outside the courtroom. Do Cindy and George now believe their daughter is guilty? Listen to the shocking exchange between "In Session`s" Vinnie Politan and the Anthonys` attorney.


VINNIE POLITAN, "IN SESSION": As we sit here today, are they convinced that their daughter is not responsible for this?

BRAD CONWAY, ATTORNEY FOR GEORGE AND CINDY ANTHONY: You know, honestly, they don`t know. There are so many questions that they wanted answers to for the longest time, and they don`t know what happened. They simply don`t know.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Incredible. So much to discuss with my fantastic panel. Janie Weintraub, criminal defense attorney. There she is. Jean Casarez, correspondent for "In Session." She`s been on top of this case from the very start. Clinical psychiatrist Dr. Dale Archer, and Vinnie Politan, host of "In Session."

Vinnie, I`ve got to start with you, because you broke some big news today. Because up until this point, Cindy and George have always maintained their daughter`s innocence. Something happened on your show. What happened?

POLITAN: Well, what happened was we spoke with their attorney, and he`s saying, "Hey, they`ve got a lot of unanswered questions. They just don`t know."

And shocking as it is, I mean, they`re in pretty much the same position that the jury will be in. They want answers. Are they waiting for the trial? You know? And they haven`t had an opportunity to discuss this with their daughter Casey to get an answer from her, to look her in the eyes and say, "Hey, did you do it? Did you not do it?"

VELEZ-MITCHELL: It`s been more than a year since they`ve been able to go to the jail and talk to her one-on-one, but it`s pretty extraordinary that they are now essentially backing off their very strong position that no way did she do it.

My big issue tonight: why the big cry? Casey sobbed uncontrollably when the prosecutor described their theory of Caylee`s murder. Listen carefully.


ASHTON: If she was physically retrained, her killer would have to have restrained her arms by some means, applying tape while she was conscious. As the killer looked into her face, maybe -- maybe her killer even saw her eyes as the tape was applied. First one piece. Then two, then three so that no breath was possible.

Could Caylee have understood what was happening to her? Did she try to resist? Could her killer see the fear in her eyes as the tape was applied? These are questions only the jurors will be able to answer in this case.

One thing we do know this is this. If we have gotten to this stage, those same jurors have already decided that the face that Caylee Anthony saw in those final moments of her mother -- of her life was her mother`s face.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Casey`s sobbing intensifies as the prosecutor laid out these horrific details. What made Casey break down, Jean Casarez? Was it the pressure of facing the death penalty or was it hearing gruesome details of her daughter`s murder? Casey wept through most of the hearing. We`ve seen her cry before, but never like this. I mean, she really lost it today, Jean.

JEAN CASAREZ, CORRESPONDENT, "IN SESSION": You`re right, Jane. She actually cried two different times in court today. One was when her attorney was arguing that her family had not been able to go visit her since October 2008. That she hasn`t been able to hear them tell her that they loved her. She cried at that point. That was definitely in regard to herself.

But this right here, you`re right, when the prosecution was laying out some facts to actually show, in good faith, while they are bringing this as a death penalty case. That`s when she broke down, during the prosecution`s argument that this, in fact, a death-penalty-eligible case.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Did you hear what we heard on a tape? Somebody off camera, possibly Casey Anthony, as the prosecutor is saying this, say, "Make it stop," and somebody else saying, "I can`t"?



CASAREZ: That is very interesting right there. No, but what I do know is the entire community is thinking about what happened one year ago today, Jane. The remains were found of Caylee Anthony one year ago today, the remains that the prosecution factually described today in court.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: At a very combative news conference after the hearing, Casey Anthony`s attorney, Jose Baez, fielded some tough questions about Casey`s hysterical crying in court. Listen.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: How difficult it was on your client to have to sit there and listen to -- how difficult was it for your client to listen to that being portrayed? Played out?

JOSE BAEZ, ATTORNEY FOR CASEY ANTHONY: It`s extremely difficult, and it would be difficult for anybody, whether it`s your child or even -- even a stranger`s child. Everyone knows that the death of a child is obviously a horrible thing, and it would be difficult for anybody to listen to.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Even if she was there when it happened?

BAEZ: I`m sorry. She wasn`t there, so you`re -- again, I guess in fairyland.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Wow. You`re in fairyland.

Dr. Dale Archer, you`re the psychiatrist. Casey Anthony has made many, many court appearances. Why burst into hysterical sobs and shudders at this hearing?

DR. DALE ARCHER, PSYCHIATRIST: Well, first of all, we`re looking at an anniversary reaction, because it was one year ago today, and oftentimes an anniversary can bring the emotions back very fresh.

But to me, from looking at this, I think this is a case of a guilty conscious, I really do. And I think it is hitting home to her right now what has happened and what she has done, and is just -- she is just distraught about that.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Jayne Weintraub, I know you`re the defense attorney who`s always taking the defense position, but you`ve got to admit it`s pretty interesting that she breaks down and sobs convulsively precisely at the point when the prosecution is talking about, "Hey, this little girl looked into the killer`s eyes."

JAYNE WEINTRAUB, CRIMINAL DEFENSE ATTORNEY: And that`s what the prosecutor wants the potential jury pool to think. Just what Jean Casarez said and what you say.

Jane, that couldn`t have been further from the truth of what the prosecutor said today. No. 1, he did not lay out any facts whatsoever to support his theory. No. 2, it was nothing but speculation.

What the lawyer was saying to the judge as a matter of law was simply this: "We don`t know. Perhaps the little girl was looking into her mother`s eyes." That`s a far cry from "We have a witness who saw it" or "We know that that`s what happened."

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Wait a second...

WEINTRAUB: They do not have a manner of death. We don`t know how she died.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: But wait a second. Jean Casarez, isn`t it true that the prosecutor also talked about duct tape being placed over the child`s mouth and over the child`s nose to the point where the child wouldn`t have been able to breathe?

WEINTRAUB: But Jane, we don`t know if that was put on before or after she was sleeping or dead.


CASAREZ: Three pieces of duct tape, and the prosecution`s argument began that Caylee went missing when she was two years old, almost three. She was old enough to be able to remove duct tape that was found on her nose and her mouth. Three pieces. One, two, three, the prosecution went forth saying.

And, remember, this was the argument by the prosecution, saying in good faith, we have brought this as a death case, and this is why.

WEINTRAUB: It`s not good faith, and I`ll tell you why. It`s not good faith, because they filed a notice three months before the body is found, and they state under oath in the motion, that there are no circumstances warranting the state seeking the death penalty. That is within their -- their purview and discretion.

After the body is found, they then file a motion without any manner of death. In other words, the reason they changed their mind and filed a notice of death, for example, would be if they found a gun and they found a gunshot in her skull. It`s...

VELEZ-MITCHELL: With all due respect, the reason they put it back on the table, the death penalty that is, is because they found the body. And when they said they didn`t -- when they said they didn`t want the death penalty, they hadn`t found a corpse. Then they found a corpse with duct tape over the mouth and the nose, and that`s when they said they`re putting the death penalty back on the table.

But listen, I want you to listen very carefully. It`s low. I`m going to play this right now. See what you hear. Hold it. Listen to this clip. Listen.


ASHTON: Caylee was almost three when she died. So the duct tape over her nose and her mouth...



ASHTON: Any child...


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Did you hear it? It was whispered, Vinnie Politan, a woman, presumably Casey, saying, "Make him stop." And somebody else, presumably an attorney, saying, "I can`t."

POLITAN: Yes, you can`t. You can`t stop it. What are you going to object do: object to someone making an argument based on some of the facts that they believe the evidence will show in this case?

And obviously, this is difficult, difficult stuff for anyone to take, especially the mother of the child who`s accused of the murder.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: All right. Everybody stay right where you are. We are all over this trial. This is a case we have been waiting for, but what can we expect from the defense team?

Recently, I sat down with Casey`s attorney, Mr. Jose Baez, one on one, in this exclusive prime-time interview. We take you inside the investigation, the trial, and the toll it`s taking on everyone. Next.


BAEZ: The state wants to kill Casey Anthony. I think it`s atrocious thing to want to kill another human being. And I -- I`m an opponent of the death penalty. And I think it`s just a horrible thing.





UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Hey, George, you ain`t got (EXPLETIVE DELETED). I`m going to find you on the road. You don`t have to find me.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Get this. Get this.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Casey`s parents, George and Cindy, pushed to the brink by the imaginable pressure, and the grief of having lost their granddaughter.

Jose, almost a year after little Caylee`s remains were found and identified, how are these two individuals -- my heart goes out to them -- how are they holding up?

BAEZ: The entire family is going through a really difficult time. It hasn`t ended, because they may lose another family member. The state wants to kill Casey Anthony. I think it`s an atrocious thing to want to kill another human being, and I`m an opponent of the death penalty. And I -- I think it`s just a horrible thing.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: You`re kind of her lifeline in a sense. I mean, here`s a woman who`s facing the possibility of -- a young woman, 23, right?

BAEZ: Yes.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Lethal injection or possibly the electric chair, and you`re pretty much the person she`s interacting with. It`s been what, something like a year since Cindy and George, her parents, have been able to visit her in jail and have one of those jailhouse conversations, right?

BAEZ: Yes. And it`s a scary thought, you know. Here we are in a situation where this young woman needs the presumption of innocence unlike anyone else. And it`s because this person is -- and I believe this with any case, not just death penalty cases, but specifically, the death penalty, you can`t take it back.

So she needs all of her constitutional rights preserved, and we need to make sure this is done right. And that`s what scares us, really, the most.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Are you going to get a change of venue, do you think?

BAEZ: We certainly hope so. The court is not going to rule on this until it`s much closer to trial, so that way the new area doesn`t get tainted if, in fact, he would grant the change-of-venue motion.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: And you`ve got to do a check fraud trial, too. And that`s coming up soon, and that`s got to be a distraction.

BAEZ: Oh, it certainly is. It certainly is. It`s a very tough job, and we`re all doing the best we can. I`m fortunate that I have good lawyers around me and people committed to justice and committed to helping Casey as much as we possibly can.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Here`s a question I know you`re not going to be able to answer. But you don`t just have good lawyers. You`ve got a dream team. And everybody in America wonders how is she paying for this dream team?

BAEZ: Well, that`s -- that`s confidential, and I don`t -- I`m not in the business of revealing client confidences.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Let me ask you this. Do you ever feel persecuted? You`ve had three complaints filed with the Florida Bar Association. Each time they investigated and said, "Nothing here." They dismissed them. But that`s got to make you feel a little bit like "I got to watch my back."

What`s going on here (ph)?

BAEZ: You know, initially -- I have to tell you, it was very scary, especially when we had a situation where the judge felt compelled to reveal or report what came across his desk.

And, you know, it`s tough position to be in. It really is. And I became a criminal defense lawyer because I believe -- I`m a true believer, and I believe in our civil rights. And I believe in fighting and trying to help people. And, you know, it`s easy to talk the talk. But now I`ve had to walk the walk, and it`s been a scary process. And you`ve got to talk the talk, you`ve got to walk the walk.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Do you ever regret it? Do you ever wake up in the morning and go, "Why did I get involved with this?"

BAEZ: No, because, you know, if I`m going to be true to my convictions, I can`t be. And you know, it`s tough. I won`t deny it. And I won`t say that, you know, it`s not. It`s not something that you don`t worry about, because I have a family, people who love me, and they`re concerned about me. And it`s...

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Have you been threatened ever?

BAEZ: I have, but you know, I don`t -- I don`t take that. There are other lawyers who fought more unpopular causes than I and have sacrificed a lot more and had to withstand a lot more. And if I ever choose to -- to rise to that level or even come close to it, I`m going to have to walk the walk, and that`s -- that`s how I feel about it.

I`m true -- I`m truly passionate about my convictions and I believe in what I do, and I believe the role of a criminal defense lawyer shouldn`t be that.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Yes or no question. Have you cried about this case?

BAEZ: I have no comment.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Uh-oh. I think that means yes. I think that means yes.

BAEZ: I have to say this...

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Hold it. We`ll get it right after the break.

Stick around. More questions with Casey Anthony`s now-famous attorney, Jose Baez, about what they`re calling the trial of the century.


GEORGE ANTHONY, FATHER OF CASEY: I got within three feet of my daughter`s car, and -- the worst odor that you could possibly smell in this -- in this world, and I`ve smelled that odor before. It smelled -- like a decomposed body.




CINDY ANTHONY, MOTHER OF CASEY: We need to have something to go on.

CASEY ANTHONY, ACCUSED OF MURDER: Mom, I don`t have anything. I`m sorry. I`ve been here a month. I`ve been here a month today. Do you understand how I feel? I mean, do you really understand how I feel in this? I`m completely, completely out of the loop with everything. The only information I get is when I see my attorney. That`s it. Outside of that, I have nothing to go on.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: "Only information is when I see my attorney."

Welcome back to ISSUES, a special presentation. Our exclusive prime- time interview with Casey Anthony`s attorney, Jose Baez.

This case is such a pressure cooker. You see it in every single frame of video. I asked you before the break, have you ever cried? You refused to answer. To me, that means yes. But tell me what you were going to say about the stresses of this case.

BAEZ: Well, it`s been a very emotional case, and I wanted to be clear. When you asked me if I`d ever cried, the only thing that would ever affect me emotionally would be the affect that it may have -- and the toll it may take on my family. That concerns me. That`s where I get emotional.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Has it taken a toll?

BAEZ: A little, and, you know, we`ve all tried to stay strong, but there`s not a prosecutor out there that`s going to make me cry over a case. And as crazy and as emotional as things have gotten, I need to be the calm in the eye of the storm. And I need to do that for my client.

And I find that there are times that, the tougher it gets, the more motivated I get. And because I`ve had good people around me giving me good advice, I think that`s -- I`ve been able to stay focused. And whenever things get crazy, I just always tell myself to come back and just practice law.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, now that you said you`re going to practice law, I`m going to hit you with the big question, the one that everybody is asking. It`s perhaps your biggest problem in your case. Why didn`t Casey immediately report her daughter missing?

Caylee was gone for a month before police were alerted, and it wasn`t even Casey who called 911. It was her mom, Cindy. Listen to this.


CINDY ANTHONY: I found out my granddaughter has been taken. She has been missing for a month. Her mother finally admitted that she`s been missing. Get someone here now!

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Your daughter admitted that the baby is where?

CINDY ANTHONY: The babysitter took her a month ago, that my daughter`s been looking for her. There`s something wrong. I found my daughter`s car today, and it smells like there`s been a dead body in the damn car!


VELEZ-MITCHELL: And, of course, there is Casey`s bizarre behavior while Caylee was missing. You`ve got to take a look at these photos of a party. Now, e triple checked. We wanted to make sure these photos were taken during the time little Caylee was missing.

Casey`s explanation, she says she was at the club looking for clues into Caylee`s disappearance. Jose, to me it looks like she`s partying. How do you explain the one month where she didn`t tell anybody her precious daughter was missing?

BAEZ: Well, we plan on laying that out at trial. I think, and I`ve said numerous times, that Casey has a very compelling reason for her actions. That will be laid out clearly at trial, and it`s going to have to be.

You know, I`m not ignoring -- and I don`t think any member of our team is ignoring these facts. They are obvious pink elephants in the room, but, you know, it`s not -- it`s something that we`re prepared to deal with. And knowing the full story, we`re going to lay it out in trial.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Stay right where you are. More insight from Casey Anthony`s attorney, Jose Baez, right after the break, as we go inside the investigation.



LEE ANTHONY, CASEY ANTHONY`S BROTHER: CMA. CMA. Each day you continue to teach me about life and about the way it should be lived. Each day you give me the ability to be strong, or to be weak. It`s been so long since I`ve been able to see you.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Heart-wrenching. Tonight, blockbuster developments and explosive allegations in the Casey Anthony murder case. We continue with ISSUES: A SPECIAL PRESENTATION, our exclusive prime-time interview with Casey`s lawyer, Jose Baez.

The remains of little Caylee`s precious -- well, Caylee`s precious remains were found in December 2008. These details are absolutely horrifying. Evidence points to a killer who wrapped duct tape around this child`s head and then placed the child inside a laundry bag, and then a sealed plastic bag before leaving it in the woods.

Jose, I know that obviously, you don`t want to say anything that`s going to hurt your client, so I`m asking you a lot of questions that you`re not really going to answer.

But I got to ask you this one -- the tattoo. To have a daughter missing and to go get a tattoo after your daughter goes missing that says "Bella Vita", the beautiful life in Italian. What the heck?

BAEZ: You`re asking to interpret something and you`re asking me to interpret another person`s actions. I think we will discuss that at trial, but I don`t think anyone can discuss intelligently another person`s interpretations of the things they do.

Specifically in this situation, it is something that we will -- if we`re dealt with it at trial, we will deal with it.

Now, if you remember, there are numerous cases out there that have happened where a tattoo doesn`t say whether you killed someone or not.

All you have to do is look at the most recent case, the Cynthia Summers case, where her husband, the Marine, died and she was out -- evidence was brought in that she was out partying, she got breast implants and things like that.

Breast implants, tattoos, these are actions and things that people do, the reasons they do them, they are completely -- who knows why they do and why people do what they do. But...

VELEZ-MITCHELL: How does -- the thing I want to know from a psychological perspective is how does Casey Anthony deal with the knowledge that so many people are looking at these little behavior patterns and shaking their heads? How does she deal with that as a person?

BAEZ: Well, that`s something obviously you`d have to ask her.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, I can`t ask her. She`s behind bars.

BAEZ: But you understand, I don`t think it`s appropriate for me to comment on how she feels or how she deals with certain things. It really isn`t.

My job is to defend her in this case. I`m doing the best job that I can. But to actually go there and comment about how she`s feeling, what she`s thinking and things like that, I really don`t think that`s appropriate.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: I think -- here`s something that I think you can comment on. I think I just found it.

Shocking evidence found in the area near Caylee`s remains. This empty Gatorade bottle was found close to Caylee`s body. Inside, traces of the knockout drug chloroform. Also inside this very bottle, a plastic baggy holding a syringe; in that syringe, more traces of chloroform and testosterone.

Now, this baby doll had traces of chloroform. The doll was found inside Casey`s car. Investigators also found high levels of chloroform in the trunk of Casey`s car and they discovered somebody searched how to make chloroform and neck-breaking on the Anthony family computer.

Now, Jose, you argue that the levels of chloroform found on some of these items, particularly on the Gatorade bottle, are very low. What is your explanation for the appearance of chloroform?

BAEZ: Well, first of all, things -- chemistry is something that needs to be analyzed in a scientific way. Taking this Gatorade bottle individually, you might as well throw that on the mountain of other things that have been misreported in this case.

This level of chloroform didn`t even make it into the FBI report and the reason for that is that the levels of chloroform are 2,000 times less than what is required to actually report -- put in an FBI report. Doesn`t meet the reporting standards but yet, it meets the news reporting standards, and that`s a big, giant problem in this case.

And that has been -- that has happened on numerous pieces of supposed evidence on this case. It gets well reported, but it doesn`t get well clarified, and that`s been the big problem with this case. The saying, "when it bleeds, it leads," isn`t a saying because it rhymes.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Yes, but let`s talk about the discovery because we have been overwhelmed with these dumps of discovery, thousands of pages being delivered and it makes your head spin. I mean, I don`t know how you prepare a case with literally an infinite mountain of paper and trying to sort out all the details.

Sure, we get the headlines; the cadaver dogs hit on the trunk and there was evidence of decomposition in the air samples and I know that the defense team has said that they`re going to question that scientific evidence, correct?

BAEZ: Correct.

But how do you deal with preparing a case when there`s just that mountain of evidence and do you feel that they`re hitting you with a lot of paperwork to confuse you?

BAEZ: The answer to your first question is one page at a time. The way I look at it is they have to go through it, too, so we`re going to do our job and that`s exactly why we have a team of lawyers working with me. This is not a one-lawyer case.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Do you think that they`re hitting you with all this paperwork and making it as confusing and as scattered as possible to make your job more difficult?

BAEZ: Well, if that`s the prosecution`s strategy, I don`t think it`s going to be very successful, because we`re going to go through it all. And there`s no shortcuts when defending and when you`re dealing with someone`s life at stake. You can`t take the shortcuts.

So if it takes us longer to get through all of the evidence, that`s exactly what we`re going to have to do. As far as the discovery`s concerned, if there`s 20,000 pages, we`re going to go through those 20,000 pages page by page, paragraph by paragraph, line by line; and we`re not taking any shortcuts.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: So when is this trial going to ever happen, given that? It keeps getting pushed back. When is it going to happen?

BAEZ: We`re certainly hoping to go sometime in the summer of next year. But if we keep getting discovery, we`re going to have to keep going through it and investigating it. And until we`ve gone through every page of discovery, it would be foolish to try a case, especially a death penalty case, or any case, for that matter, without having all of the facts.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, if they are trying to overwhelm you with paperwork, it could boomerang because from what I`ve seen of criminal cases, the longer it takes to go to trial, the better it is for the defendant, because people`s memories get weak and people die, they disappear, things change, and the freshness of the case disappears, and there`s a staleness that comes into it.

Do you feel that if it gets pushed back, that`s good for you?

BAEZ: We don`t really look at it that way because Casey wants her day in court. And she has stood and pled not guilty to this case, and she wants to have her day in court and fight these charges.

What no one also seems to want to comment on also is how many of these forensic exams that were done on this case actually exculpate her? They went through every single pair of shoes that Casey owns, and checked soil samples, textile fibers, DNA, everything that they`ve done in this case. There`s mountains of evidence that actually exculpate her.

So at some point, if it were the other way around and it actually pointed the finger at Casey, everybody would be yelling, "smoking gun, smoking gun, smoking gun," but every time it comes out and it doesn`t point to Casey, everybody turns around and says, "Oh, that is not important."

VELEZ-MITCHELL: I want you to look at this footage. This is footage of you going out with Casey; you`ve got your arm around her. It`s a media circus, it`s windy, it`s raining; it`s a madhouse.

There were those who said that you were -- you have been too sort of emotionally attached to her. They point to the fact that you had your arm around her.

What do you make of those criticisms?

BAEZ: I think it`s a joke. I mean, you know, there are some good -- there are some good journalists covering this case and unfortunately, there are some others that are just trying to get ahead of the others and try to find something explosive and nasty to talk about.

And to suggest that I have anything going on with my client is ridiculous. And I...

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Does it make you angry?

BAEZ: No. You know, it just motivates me more to -- and it opens my eyes that, you know, you have to be careful. What disturbs me the most is that they`re playing with someone`s life here and out of everything that happens in this case, everybody seems to be detached from the fact that they are trying to kill a person. And if you`re going to try and kill a person in this country, at least you should have the presumption of innocence and this type of foolishness shouldn`t go on.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Couple of quick questions.

BAEZ: Sure.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Do you think there`s going to be cameras in the courtroom, yes or no?

BAEZ: I don`t know.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Do you want them? Yes or no?

BAEZ: You know that`s a decision that we`re discussing and it`s not a decision that`s been made yet, unfortunately.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: And my final question, will Casey take the stand?

BAEZ: That`s certainly something that -- a decision that gets made much later on in a case. It`s definitely not something that we have made right now.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, if that happens, I`m going to be down there in that courtroom watching.

BAEZ: Front row seat, huh?

VELEZ-MITCHELL: All right, Jose. Thank you for joining us.

BAEZ: My pleasure. Thanks, Jane.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, you have been listening to our very special guest tonight in this ISSUES Special Presentation. We are all over the Casey Anthony case.

We`re going to have more on the investigation and the defense team strategy. Coming up: analysis.



UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Autopsy report concluded that the cause of Caylee Anthony`s death is unknown and there is no issue of trauma here anywhere. There is no evidence here either of cruelty or torture.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: In a dramatic hearing today, Casey`s attorney says the real reason that prosecutors are seeking a death penalty in this case is because they want to get a biased jury.

Defense attorney Andrea Lyon argued, "Jurors in death penalty cases are a whole lot more likely to convict defendants." She also reportedly implied the fear of being put to death could actually pressure Casey into making a plea deal.

Back with my fantastic panel and joining us: Ryan Smith, host of "In Session".

Do you buy the argument that a death penalty jury is more likely to convict, Ryan?

RYAN SMITH, HOST, "IN SESSION": Not necessarily, Jane. You know what? It is a possibility that they will use that and say there might have been something happening here.

Let`s be real. I think what they are going to do is I think when you have that kind of charge, they look at it, but it`s not a consideration in the judgment. They`re going to look at the case on the merits and decide it that way.

It`s an interesting argument for the defense to forward, but the problem is, if you do that every time, would you never have a death penalty, because everybody would make the same case. If you put me up on a death penalty charge, I`m more likely to be convicted.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Excellent point.

JAYNE WEINTRAUB, CRIMINAL DEFENSE ATTORNEY: You are more prone to convict and that`s a fact, but that doesn`t make it illegal to have you as a juror. Death-qualified jurors are more prone to convict. That`s a fact.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: All right. Well, let`s go -- there were a slew of motions today -- so many. You see Casey Anthony in court sobbing repeatedly like she`s never cried before. Here she is dabbing her eyes, but there`s other video other just really sobbing convulsively which we`ll show you.

One of the motions was to have Casey`s check fraud charges dismissed. Remember this surveillance video?

Casey was caught buying booze and lingerie at Target -- which I call Target -- using checks stolen from a friend. Her defense attorney Jose Baez argued Casey might be biased against in that trial. In other words, that people might really form a bias against her because they suspect on top of everything else, she`s somebody who kites checks and steals checks from her friends.

But the judge said the check fraud case will be resolved before the murder case, and reassured everyone that Casey would be treated fairly by the judge, as she has no priors.

Jean Casarez, it does seem pretty extraordinary that before she goes to trial for murder, possibly with the death penalty, she has to face a check fraud trial?

JEAN CASAREZ, CORRESPONDENT, "IN SESSION": Jane, almost four weeks from now, there`s going to be a trial, right behind me in this courthouse as it is a felony check fraud trial. And the state is alleging that she wrote out numerous checks to Winn-Dixie, to Target, (INAUDIBLE), even Bank of America, all from her good friend`s checkbook.

But Jane, this all happened while Caylee was missing. There are so many facts that intertwined. So in the next four weeks, are going to find a plea deal on the table? Are we going to see her plead guilty to these counts and become a felon before her murder trial begins? Because the case can`t be continued; something`s got to happen in the next four weeks or go to trial.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: You know what I found totally strange Jayne Weintraub? The same judge apparently is handling both of the cases. I find it odd that the same judge that is handling a fraud case is handling a murder case.

WEINTRAUB: No, actually they`re all felony trials and that isn`t unusual at all in Florida. Actually in Dade-Broward-Palm Beach, we do the same thing in the tri-county area. It`s a circuit court. It`s a trial court level. That`s not unusual.

What is unusual is this judge forcing the check fraud case to trial. Why? It isn`t going to be an aggravating factor. Because sometimes what they do, the state when they want to try somebody with a lesser offense first is they try that case so they can make it an aggravating factor for death.

A check fraud case is not going to be looked at as an aggravating factor. The state is looking to, "A" poison the jury pool; "B," they`re looking to see whether or not she takes the witness stand; and, "C," they will cross-examine her and attack her credibility.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Guess what, Jayne? I know you think that this is all poisoning but maybe she did steal checks, and if so, she has to be held accountable Dr. Dale Archer.

WEINTRAUB: And it has to go before her murder trial?


VELEZ-MITCHELL: You know what? This is a Shakespearean drama and a cautionary tale about the dangers of not reporting your child missing and going out partying and dancing while your precious daughter is missing. It`s a Shakespearean drama.


DR. DALE ARCHER, PSYCHOLOGIST: I totally agree with you, Jane. I totally agree with you. And I think to address Jayne`s point she is talking about from a legal perspective.

I`m talking about from a psychological perspective. And with Casey, the thing is that we would want to see her breaking down like she did at the time when her child first went missing. That`s what we expect from a mother. Not one...

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Instead, we have these pictures of her out partying, and these were taken, in fact we checked, after her child disappeared.

ARCHER: Absolutely. So the child...

WEINTRAUB: And just what the doctor said it`s not normal behavior. It`s just not normal behavior. And I`m saying that not just as a mom. I`m saying it as a lawyer. And it`s inappropriate and it`s...

ARCHER: But Jayne, the point is...

VELEZ-MITCHELL: One at a time.

ARCHER: The point is that now she`s breaking down over the loss of her child, the way she should have done a year ago.

Why is it coming out now? Very simply, it`s a guilty conscience. She realized what realizes what she has done. She`s been in jail for a whole year to be able to think about that. It`s all coming home to her right now.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: I have to ask Jean Casarez about the jailhouse visits because this was also a source of tremendous contention. Ten seconds Jean.

CASAREZ: Well, the judge -- the defense is saying that when they talk with Casey Anthony attorney/client talks that there`s a video camera with the red light going and they think that audio`s being transmitted. No decision.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: All right. Everybody stay right where you are.

It was a very dramatic emotional day in court. Casey Anthony`s parents were very emotional as well; Casey shuddering in sobs.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Could Caylee have understood what was happening to her? Did she try to resist? Could her killer see the fear in her eyes as the tape was applied? These are questions only the jurors will be able to answer in this case.




BAEZ: I disagree 100 percent with the state`s theory. I`ll just leave it at that.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: How difficult was it on your client to have to sit there and listen to -- how difficult was it for your client to listen to that being portrayed, played out?

BAEZ: It`s extremely difficult and it would be difficult for anybody.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: A dramatic emotional day in court. Casey Anthony`s defense team arguing also to keep Casey`s jail visits private. She basically doesn`t want them to be recorded.

Listen to this.


ANDREA LYON, CASEY ANTHONY`S DEFENSE ATTORNEY: The state of Florida`s seeking to kill my client and she needs some support here. And because of the fact that nothing that happens in any of these visits is private, her family, her parents, who are sitting here, haven`t had the opportunity to even speak to their daughter in over a year because it`s too dangerous to her case and to her life. The level of pressure that is on a capital charge defendant and the need that she may have to just have someone come and say "honey, I love you".


VELEZ-MITCHELL: And by the way this was such a dramatic hearing that while Casey Anthony is sobbing, her mom Cindy actually not only sobs but walks out of court at one point because it`s just too much to take.

Ryan Smith, this whole issue of videotaping inside the jail where she is being held pending trial is twofold. One, the family wants to be able to visit without being recorded, but the lawyers also want to be able to visit without being recorded. What`s their argument?

SMITH: Right. There were two different arguments. The defense attorney tried to combine both and tried to put them in the same net.

There was one argument that the lawyer says, "I want to be able to meet with my client without being videotaped or audiotaped to protect my attorney/client privilege. That was a more credible argument than the one that said, "We also want you to destroy the tapes of any family meetings so the family can come in and visit."

You know, Jane, the family can come in and visit at any time. They can come by. They can drop off flowers. They can talk about the weather...

VELEZ-MITCHELL: The point was...

WEINTRAUB: And then see it on the tabloids the next day?

SMITH: No, but you know what even if they -- then they have to watch what they say or at least say things differently. But how do we know what they say in that prison is necessarily going to be released? That`s what the defense was trying to argue because at the same time...

WEINTRAUB: Because it`s Casey Anthony and it has been released. But why are they making this selective decision to only broadcast Casey Anthony`s visits? Why don`t they broadcast other inmates`? The whole purpose of the videotape is for safety and security of inmates and the jail people. That is it, period; over and out.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Here`s what I don`t understand --

WEINTRAUB: ... when the mother wants to talk to her.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Jean Casarez, she`s not the only person locked up in these facilities awaiting trial for something serious. How come this is an issue with her? How come every lawyer doesn`t want the cameras turned off?

CASAREZ: Because I guess her defense team has the ingenuity to bring the motion. But as the county attorney said today in court, there are statutes and bylaws and rules that we have to follow. And one of those is that we have to have security cameras manning every portion of this jail and if we don`t report things, we`re going to be in violation of statute.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Thank you, fabulous panel. What a great discussion. We`re going to stay on top of the Casey Anthony case.

And remember to click on and order your copy of my new book "I Want".

You are watching "issues" on HLN.