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Rated: E · Chapter · Crime/Gangster · #2244638
The answers to the Casey Anthony trial you always wondered about


An Orlando Family’s Hoax

Chapter Eleven
Family Finds Hope, Then Despair
*************
Reporter’s Note for Readers

The December weather in Florida turned cooler as Christmas holidays filled the young couple’s schedule. Casey announced her engagement to Jesse on New Year’s Eve by inviting his parents to a backyard barbeque. The above-ground pool Cindy used for evening swims competed with the baby for the guest’s attention. The teenage mom’s life for the first time seemed simple and hopeful. She beamed as she anticipated her new life with Jesse and Caylee. Her expression turned to a frown when she saw her mother and George holding hands as they exited the Florida room. Cindy and George meant bad news for Casey. She feared seeing her parents together again put the baby’s life at risk. She was right.

Cindy’s marriage went seriously off the rails after George gambled her life savings down to a zero balance and he scurried off to live with his parents. His notice of divorce was more bad news. Cindy was good at reacting proactively and made plans to get things back on track, pronto. She drove across the state to convince George it was in both their interests to continue being a team, just like always. As she and George introduced themselves to Jesse’s parents, they announced George was soon coming home to live again in Hopespring Drive.

Casey listened and filtered the news through her own perspective of what that meant for her and Caylee. She saw her father as an uninvited guest crashing her engagement party on New Year’s Eve. What made it worse, the uninvited guest was holding her mother’s hand, the mother who wanted to take Caylee away from her. She knew they were a team.

*************

Reporting Casey Anthony’s Arrest

George and Cindy’s fear over Caylee’s unknown paternity started when the family denied she was pregnant. The moment of Caylee’s birth, Cindy handed a transfer of custody agreement to the new mother. Caylee’s entrance into the Anthony family disrupted the uneasy balance which kept the Anthony family functioning by keeping family secrets. Days after the baby was home from the hospital, issues George had with all of this couldn’t wait. He stole his wife’s life savings and left town, without saying goodbye to the family, then filed to divorce Cindy.

George slept on his parents’ couch in a nearby Florida city, so Casey went back to work for Kodak at Universal Studios. She couldn’t afford a nanny to watch Caylee, so she asked a friend, Lauren, to help her temporarily out of a tough spot.
Cindy was also in a tough spot and things for her were getting complicated. Divorce was an existential threat for her. A divorce would force her to sell the house and pay alimony to George for life. There was no way she was going to let George go through with his divorce. That was not going to happen. Cindy drove to Ft. Myers specifically to reconcile with him. With George coming back home again and working nights, Casey worried about her nine-month-old while she was at work. Fights between Cindy and Casey over Caylee also escalated. Cindy wanted George back home for financial reasons. Then too, with him working nights she didn’t have to be around him that much. Casey, on the other hand, worried he might be Caylee’s father, and she was afraid to leave her baby alone with him.

George and Cindy’s reconciliation suddenly made the Anthony family’s future look different. George would be sleeping in a room across the hall from where Casey and Caylee slept. When Cindy left for work each morning, Caylee would be in a house filled with the scent of baby powder and the sounds of a vulnerable newborn. If Casey couldn’t find a nanny to watch Caylee while she was at work, then well, she would have to leave Caylee with him.
George’s return signaled Cindy got her way. She wasn’t going to have to sell her house or split the proceeds 50-50 with George. She wouldn’t have to pay him alimony for life either. Inviting George back was a no-brainer for her. It was not difficult for detectives to conclude protecting Caylee from

George was not on the list of Cindy’s priorities – certainly not as high as her career. Jesse’s father, Richard, shared his impressions with detectives after meeting Cindy and George the first time at Casey’s engagement party. He said it was obvious to him the family “had issues.”

Greta Van Susteren: “Richard, did you ever meet her parents, Casey’s parents?

Richard Grund
: “Yes, I met George and Cindy during the engagement. Casey set up a meet-and-greet for the families.”

Richard Grund: “There were issues. When we went over for the family barbecue to introduce the families, it was obvious who the lead dog was. The lead dog was Cindy. And whatever she wanted to have happened, happened. And if she wanted Casey to do something that’s what got done.”

Richard Grund: “Cindy is a very different, very specific woman. And you know when Casey spent a lot of time at our house, I could kind of see when we met the family why she wanted to spend more time with us.”

Casey was not planning to see George back and living in Hopespring Drive. She was thinking of her engagement to Jesse and wanted the New Year’s Eve event to be a symbol of her new life, centered around Caylee. She looked for help from someone outside of her family. It will bring tragedy to Caylee if she can’t find that help. Her first effort was trying to convince Jesse to rent a house for the three of them.


Jesse was tight with his parents. They talked over important decisions together. Reverend Richard made it clear that if his son set up housekeeping like Casey wanted him to do, before their wedding, he would withdraw his offer to preside over their marriage vows. Jesse broke the news to Casey bluntly, not realizing their implications in the battle she was having with her mother. Jesse told her, “No, we can’t live together with Caylee before the wedding.”

Richard Grund: “…she even tried to get Jesse to move into a house before they got married. That’s how bad she wanted out. But the reason that didn’t happen is, because I told Jesse, ‘If you do that, I won’t perform the ceremony.’ I said, ‘If you want me to perform your ceremony you can’t live together beforehand.’”

Lauren called Casey and gave notice she wasn’t going to watch Caylee forever. Casey was going to have to find someone else. Finding a replacement nanny for Lauren was suddenly another complication in her plans to keep Caylee. Cindy knew George’s return put pressure on Casey to find a way to unload her responsibility for Caylee. Maybe she would agree to Cindy’s demands to give up legal custody of Caylee to her. Lauren unknowingly added to the mountain of anxiety her school friend felt by picking that moment to tell her she needed to find someone else to watch Caylee, and right away.

Casey went to Jesse’s parents to ask them to pick up the slack from Lauren’s exit as Caylee’s babysitter. Reverend Richard loved playing with Caylee and watching her for short periods, but he was not on board for full-time babysitting. He was tired of his nanny chores and pressed the issue with Casey.

Richard Grund: “Lauren suddenly couldn’t do it anymore. I think she was going back to school. Now she has no babysitter for Caylee and she’s supposedly working at Kodak, at Universal.”

Detective Yuri Melich: “And this is when again?”

Richard Grund: “This is uh, this is March, April, and part of May ’06.” {Caylee was born Aug 7, 2005}.

Richard Grund
: “So, Jesse decides to give up his only day off from Progressive Insurance. He’s watching Caylee on Mondays. And then it got to the point where somebody else in my family is watching her two days a week. So now Caylee’s at our house three days out of the week during work. I think Casey’s there at night and on the weekends. I don’t have a problem with that because Caylee’s a wonderful little girl. But I work out of my house and this was a severe disruption to me. So, I began to press Casey about, ‘Have you found anybody yet?’”

Detective Yuri Melich: “Okay.”

Richard Grund: “And then when she finally said she found someone {to watch Caylee}, as I told you on the phone it was odd. Rather than just saying, ‘Yeah (affirmative), I’ve got that worked out.’ {Instead, she says} ‘Oh, yeah, I found this lady uh, Zenaida Gonzalez and she watches my friend’s son Zachery. And Zachery and Caylee play together and they love to be together. So, this will work out great.’ I’m thinking, wow that’s a whole lot more information than I needed.”

The date for George to move-in was approaching and Casey felt she had no choice; she needed to find someone to watch Caylee. The pressure must have seemed overwhelming. Her attempts to find a source of support outside the family kept evaporating. She loved her job, she loved photography, but without a sitter, she couldn’t continue working at Kodak. Leaving her nine-month-old at home with George was not an option for her. She argued with her mother about it because Cindy had private reasons for wanting control of Caylee. In their interview with Dr. Phil after the trial, Cindy and George talked about the tensions surrounding his return.
Dr. Phil: {to Cindy} “And you say at that time (just before George returned home), Casey changed?”

Cindy: “Well yeah, I mean it (George’s decision to split) had a big effect. Everybody felt let down by their dad and kind of betrayed. And the thing that hurt Casey the most was then he wanted to sell the house and split it up. Casey felt like he kicked her and Caylee out. She could not understand how he could do that. I know she didn’t want him to come home.”

Dr. Phil
: {to George} “Did you know that she didn’t want you to come back?”

George: “Yes, she told me.”

Detective Yuri Melich: “Okay.”

Casey needed a babysitter five days a week, and there was no one to ask. In her mind, George was an existential threat to her and Caylee. The single-mom’s choices were stark. She couldn’t afford daycare. She could either keep her job with Kodak and leave Caylee home with her father or think of some scheme to keep Caylee safely out of his reach even if it meant she had to give up working.

If Casey’s claims of her father’s abuse are true, it seems obvious that she should have told someone and asked for help, especially with a baby girl in the home. Abuse survivors, however, can be groomed to protect their abusers and don’t readily break their dependence. A parent-abuser’s grip on child-victims gets stronger when there is a spouse-enabler involved. Detectives weren’t seeing Cindy through the lens of an abuser’s spouse-enabler. So it’s almost impossible for victims to report what happened without outside support. Casey tried talking to Jesse but he didn’t want to hear about her father or her brother’s nighttime entries into her bedroom.

Linda Drane-Burdick
: “Are you aware that there are, I believe, two individuals who have given statements that Casey told them Lee was inappropriate, sexually with her when she was younger?”

Cindy: “I’m aware that Jesse Grund said that, yes.”

Linda Drane-Burdick: “Okay, do you know anything about that?”

Cindy: “No” {Flag #10}

Linda Drane-Burdick:
“As a teenager or as a young girl, Casey never disclosed to you…”

Cindy: “No.” {Flag #11}

Linda Drane-Burdick:
“…that anybody, let alone her brother…”

Cindy: “Correct.” {Flag #12}

Linda Drane-Burdick
“… had done anything like that to her?”

Cindy:
“Correct.” {Flag #13}

One of her psychologists, Dr. William Weitz, talked about Casey’s fears of George during his deposition given before trial.

Dr. William Weitz
: “Correct. I have indicated to you, that according to Casey, her father had sexually assaulted her many times during a number of years; that she felt he was highly impulsive and erratic; that he could lose control over his behavior easily and so she feared him and feared for her daughter’s safety.”

Casey no longer expected Jesse’s dad to change his mind and agree to let them live together. When she announced their engagement on New Year’s eve their plan was to get married in a couple of years. Now in a few weeks, George was coming back home to live. She didn’t have two-years to wait for Jesse’s career schedule to come into sync with her need to move Caylee out of Hopespring Drive. When she looked at her nine-month-old baby, it must have seemed her future was reduced to one priority: her baby. There was zero chance Jesse’s dad or her friend, Lauren, would watch Caylee for her. Pretty much, Casey felt nothing was going her way. Pretty much, she was right. In the background of it all, Cindy was a presence who wanted Caylee for her own reasons.

After hours of talking, it was clear she and Jesse weren’t on the same page. He was focused on college and closed down her attempts to talk about living together. She broke off their engagement and quit her job with Kodak. Jesse talked about their breakup to investigators.

Jesse Grund: “Casey broke my heart, I loved her very much. She loved being a mother. She loved me. She had a love about life.”

Casey Anthony claimed to be a victim for years of horrific sexual abuse. If she is to be believed, that suggests she coped by protecting her abuser. She obeyed her family’s rules for security and kept family secrets bottled up inside. She hid the pain so deep she would blame herself if word of her abuse broke up the family. Her security depended on keeping the family intact. That is what many abuse victims think. She was afraid of losing the only family structure she knew, even though it protected her abuser, and exposed her and now even her infant daughter to more abuse. Dr. Karyl McBride wrote about denial in an article for Psychology Today.


Dr. McBride On Denial: “
Denial is a coping mechanism. A child victim stays in denial to survive. Children are dependent on their parents for their care. If a child breaks through her denial and tells the truth, they could lose their caretakers. They could face abandonment. Who then can they rely on?”

Simply put, as Casey described her world, it was out of the question to tell anyone she decided to quit her job to protect Caylee from an abusive father. If she had a different mother, who had a different set of rules and priorities, perhaps Casey could have broken through all the denial. Perhaps with a different mother, she could have brought her fears up to the surface and found freedom from them. But that wasn’t going to happen in the world she described inside Hopespring Drive. There, her mother’s rules were all about protecting secrets and keeping the family together.

Just weeks after the trial, Cindy collected a six-figure fee to appear with Dr. Phil on his television show. He made a chilling observation in the form of a question, though Dr. Phil didn’t recognize its significance.

Dr. Phil: “But in events that took place after that {George’s return home in June 2006}, did it ever occur to you that ‘he’d hidden substantial things from me before? Could he have done it again?”


Chapter Twelve
“Zanny the Nanny:” Casey’s Best Friend

*************
Advance Chapter Preview for Readers
Dr. William Weitz (psychologist): “All of them since childhood to her represented threats – mother, father, brother.”
Linda Drane-Burdick: “Okay, keep going.”
Dr. William Weitz: “Yes, I indicated that there were fears regarding Caylee, very divisive. That’s her reaction to me, somewhat mad and angry, overwhelmed and sad. And then she described her fear basically of having Caylee in the house alone with George; fears that events that happened to her would happen to Caylee.”
*************
Reporter’s Note for Readers
Casey’s narrative of abuse implicates her parents’ fear of the baby’s paternity. If that is true, then Caylee’s birth was a wrenching experience for the family. It set them on a path that led to Caylee’s death at the hands of someone in the family she trusted.
.

Cindy’s reaction to Caylee raised suspicion for investigators. How could a pediatric RN deny her daughter was pregnant? Investigators wanted Cindy to tell them “why?”
The term “triangulation” seemed to fit the Anthony family dynamic. In their world, one point of the triangle seemed to be occupied by George, wanting to be free of suspicion that he was Caylee’s father. A second point in the family triangle was Casey. She was consumed with worry about how to protect Caylee from George. The third point in the Anthony family triangle was the baby’s grandmother. Cindy seemed to be denying Casey’s pregnancy to pressure her to have an abortion. Then after her baby was delivered, Cindy wasted no time in trying to take Caylee away from her. Detectives had a complicated set of bizarre facts entangled within a dysfunctional and strange set of family relationships.
*************

Reporting Casey Anthony’s Arrest
It wouldn’t be surprising if the prospect of her father’s return to Hopespring Drive provoked memory flashbacks for Casey recalling the first time she was left at home alone by her mother. She had an infant daughter herself now, and they slept in the room where she claimed she was assaulted as a third-grader. Ten years later she bonded with her daughter in that same bedroom. They slept in the same bed where she was molested. If Casey Anthony can be believed, it’s hard to think her childhood experiences did not evoke an existential fear about eight-month-old Caylee’s survival in what was for Casey, a house of horrors on Hopespring Drive.

Psychologist, Dr. William Weitz, evaluated the young accused murderer during 10 hours of confidential, private interviews including 100 hours of post-interview analysis. He used information provided by eight other psychologists who were instructed by the court to submit reports on the accused. Dr. Weitz brought with him a huge file of notes and information for the lead prosecutor to read when she called him into her office for a deposition. Dr. Weitz responded to prosecutors’ questions as they read his notes back to him.
Linda Drane-Burdick: “There is another starred… {referring to notes}”
Dr. William Weitz: “All of them since childhood to her represented threats – mother, father, brother.”
Linda Drane-Burdick: “Okay, keep going.”
Dr. William Weitz: “Yes, I indicated there were fears regarding Caylee, very divisive. That was her reaction to me, somewhat mad and angry, overwhelmed and sad. And then she described her fear basically of having Caylee in the house alone with George; fears that events that happened to her would happen to Caylee.”
Linda Drane-Burdick: “All right, what period of time is she attributing these fears?”
Dr. William Weitz: “She was talking about having a fear specific to Caylee after Caylee’s birth. And a fear of not wanting – she described for me, but it is not on the page, she felt very comfortable leaving Caylee with her mother, Cindy, but she never felt comfortable and would not leave her alone with George. She felt

George was a threat to her daughter based on what happened to her, and that would make her uncomfortable.”
Prosecutor Jeff Ashton: “So when you wrote, ‘she feared father.’ It wasn’t that she feared for her safety. It was that she feared for her daughter?”
Dr. William Weitz: “In other words, she had very divisive feelings vis-a-vis the issue you know of leaving Caylee with George alone in the house.”
When Lee learned his parents were reconciling he planned a quick exit out of the house before George returned. He knew the tension and drama that occupied the home whenever George was around. He found an apartment and moved in with his girlfriend, Mallory.
The family returned to its core unit: Cindy, George, Casey, plus the new member of the Anthony family, Caylee. The baby introduced new levels of fear which were invisible outside Hopespring Drive’s walls. Caylee’s presence disrupted the already dysfunctional and fragile family structure there. Casey feared her daughter would be assaulted like she was. She was ultimately right. Was it Casey herself, the obvious suspect for detectives? Was it George, the ex-cop, and a favorite of police? Or was it conceivably, Cindy, who had and adversarial relationship with Caylee and Casey beginning with Caylee’s birth?
In the months leading up to the return of the family’s bad actor, it was clear things weren’t going to be the same with George in the home again. Family secrets were starting to bleed from the wounds that began with Casey’s pregnancy. The maturing daughter was now a mother herself and her commitment to keeping family secrets softened. George’s dating, gambling, and stealing were a subject of conversations among Casey’s friends, and that bothered Cindy. Ryan Paisley, one of Casey’s best friends and a frequent visitor to the home, was called into the


Orange County Sheriff’s office for an interview. At his debriefing, he talked about the stress he observed between Casey’s parents. Ryan was aware that George took money from Cindy’s bank account and abandoned the family. Ryan also knew about George’s involvement with other women. Ryan was asked by detectives to tell what he knew about George’s behavior as soon as Caylee entered the picture.
Detective Yuri Melich: “Okay. What about her father? Any problems there or is it a typical….”
Ryan Paisley (Casey’s friend): “…Well (sighs), uhm, I guess there’s a little bit of animosity between the two of them {Cindy and George} because I guess he had had some issues uh, earlier on, you know, putting him in a bad spot as far as credit goes. He took off for a couple of months.”
Detective Yuri Melich: “Hmm.”
Ryan Paisley: “And, you know, and then he came back. Uh, Cindy had found out that he was talking to another woman on-line and so there were some issues there that she had some sort of, you know, and, you know, some valid reasons…”
Detective Yuri Melich: “And you said dad left for a couple of months? Is that because of the cheating or something else?”
Ryan Paisley: “Uh, yeah (affirmative).”
Richard Gabriel is a perceptive, nationally prominent trial consultant brought in to work for the accused’s defense attorney, Jose Baez. Gabriel published his professional assessment of Casey’s family environment based on

his visit to the Anthony home. He was alone in the Anthony residence shortly after Casey was arrested, and he stood in her room. He could feel the vibes surrounding him in Casey’s bedroom. Gabriel was touched by how close and confined everything seemed. He said: “When you step into her small bedroom, you see a teenager’s room: light blue paint, frilly bedspread, posters. There is a sense that Casey emotionally stopped developing sometime in adolescence. What strikes you as you look around are the dozens upon dozens of individual and montage photographs of Caylee spread over all available surfaces. These photographs were there from before the time Caylee went missing. This room starkly contrasts with the rest of the furnishings of the small home with its black lacquer Japanese furniture and running bamboo in the yard. One is struck by how close and compressed the house is, how near the pool is to the living room and how the home is close to the site where Caylee’s remains were found.”
It is striking how often people who knew the relationship between Casey and Caylee or were part of their world, told investigators they sensed the same warm, empathetic relationship Gabriel felt in their room. He rose to the top of his profession as a jury consultant by cultivating his skills for evaluating people. His insight suggested a dark history in the Anthony home, which he felt compelled to share publicly. He said, “Secrets can also run deep in families. There is a hidden code – things that are done that should not be done. Things that are said that should not be said. And things that are never spoken of because they are too painful; too laden with shame and guilt to be uttered.”
In May, George made occasional visits to Hopespring Drive shortly before his June move-in date and grabbed some of Cindy’s homemade chili at dinnertime. He, no doubt, expected to find Casey working at a new job and working all day. He must have contemplated a role for himself as Caylee’s default caregiver starting in June when he moved back home. He was unemployed, which was

normal, and no one outside of the family knew for sure what he was thinking, or what he might do. As he contemplated his return, he imagined Cindy would be at her desk in Gentiva’s offices, and he would be home by himself, again unemployed. He would be the one who watched over Caylee if Casey was at work.
Her options were framed by a simple truth. Cindy was not going to pay for Caylee’s care, which was $600 a month. Income from her job as a greeter-photog with Kodak wouldn’t pay enough for daycare and an apartment far enough away from Hopespring Drive to keep Caylee safe. Casey’s reality seemed framed by the simple fact that she was a single mom who had no one to turn to or talk with about the unspeakable threats she feared if she returned to work and left her infant daughter at home. Casey loved photography and working at Kodak, but in her world, the fateful decision in front of her was never a close call. She quit her job at Kodak in March, and a few weeks later broke up with Jesse.
It was a rainy day in the first week of June when Casey’s eight months of feeling safe with Caylee in Hopespring Drive abruptly ended as she heard the sound of George’s PT Cruiser pull into the family’s driveway. She held onto Caylee and watched from her bedroom as he moved his things back into Cindy’s bedroom. She closed her bedroom door and locked it, listening to the sounds of his footsteps outside her room. No matter how hard she tried, she couldn’t make herself go to the police and report what she experienced as a child or the last time she claims he assaulted her nine months before Caylee’s birth. She couldn’t tell anyone what she feared he might do to Caylee if they were ever alone together. Her psychiatrist, Jeffrey Danziger, was deposed by an assistant state attorney in the case and the forensic psychiatrist described the conflicted feelings Casey said she had for her father. Dr. Danziger, revealed why she couldn’t report him.


Dr. Danziger (Psychiatrist): (She said) “I hate the fact that I don’t hate him for everything he’s done, everything that happened. I hate the fact that I can still love him, I’m like a little girl wishing my dad could be my dad. I can’t figure out why I don’t hate him. Years of anger, frustration, hurt, and pain. Finally, I am openly speaking about it, but it’s painful and distressing.”
Jeff Ashton: “What is her emotional state when she is relaying this narrative?”
Dr. Danziger: “At this time she’s looking more somber and starts to show a bit of anger in her face. Her mouth perhaps is more pursed. Her eyes are perhaps narrowed a bit. This was perhaps the first time I saw her looking tense in her face and body language, as this was discussed. I mean it was more serious and direct. This was where I saw for the first time, and again, it’s hard to quantify body language, but more of a tension, distress; eyes narrowed, mouth pursed, jaws clenched type of thing.”
Jeff Ashton: “When she’s discussing with you her emotional state, tearing up, no one asking about her, does she become emotional at all during those recitations?”
Dr. Danziger: “Perhaps it is best to say I saw a more serious look on her face, but nothing that would reach the level of despair or frustration.
Jeff Ashton: “Sure.”
With George back home again, the new mother was consumed by thoughts about keeping Caylee with her. Cindy’s thoughts were about asserting legal rights to take Caylee away from Casey. In the Anthony home, Caylee was always “an issue” that made George feel like he needed to “do something stupid.”

George’s presence signaled for Casey a return to the bad old days in Hopespring Drive. Casey felt trapped again by her family’s rules much the same as when she was a child-victim of abuse. Memories of helplessness as an eight-year-old must have been called up into her consciousness as she saw Cindy run to greet George as he got out of his car. Caylee’s new mother was groomed to keep secrets and burdened with a conflicting maternal instinct to protect her infant.
When first Lauren and then Jesse’s dad told her they wouldn’t watch Caylee for her, she had a simple solution and an obvious one, as things turned out. Casey didn’t tell her friends she quit work with Kodak at Universal Studios. She made up a story that followed Cindy’s rules to keep secrets and also enabled her to keep Caylee safe. She told friends she was so lucky to find a perfect babysitter who watched Caylee for her anytime in the day or night. This mystery woman was a wonderful nanny, and unbelievably, she was always available at a moment’s notice. Casey didn’t need to coordinate a schedule with her ideal nanny who she nick-named “Zanny.” This mythical figure was such a wonderful thing for her since she could invent whatever hours were convenient to go to work at her fake job.
Casey’s lies ascended to new levels of the bizarre. Of course, it would take little to no effort for anyone to confirm she didn’t have a nanny and it was easy enough to confirm she wasn’t working at Universal Studios. So, Casey’s lies had a trademark characteristic that never changed: they were easy to confirm as lies and never meant to be believable. They were a self-absorbed coping mechanism, like her denial. It all made perfect sense in the Anthony’s world of denial and keeping family secrets.
There was an inconvenient reality that Casey’s lies couldn’t hide. She had zero income. For the next two years, she didn’t work. Nobody ever saw or talked to Zanny the nanny, not Casey, not George, not Cindy, not anyone, ever. In

Casey’s world, secrets and denial were coins of the realm. But she needed real coins to live on and buy things for Caylee. Casey’s plan could work oddly enough; only with Cindy’s covert help.
Cindy gave her money and lied to investigators to keep it secret. For Cindy, George, and Casey, Zanny the nanny became a simple, and very do-able hoax on the world outside of Hopespring Drive. Cindy breathed life into the hoax by telling friends at work that she trusted Zanny the nanny to watch Caylee. Just as Cindy lied to everyone about her daughter’s pregnancy, it was not a big deal for George and Cindy to fit one or two more lies into their narrative. There was no moral angst for either of them about lying to friends. All three Anthonys were well-practiced at constructing hoaxes, so that is what they did.
As lying reached new extremes in the Anthony home, the unseen Zanny was one more layer of strange that people outside the family accepted as the Anthony family’s version of reality. Casey’s friends didn’t know her reasons for lying about a job or her claims that she had a fake nanny watching Caylee. Everything about Casey’s life after George came back to live in Hopespring Drive was so bizarre. All anybody knew when they saw Casey was that Caylee was always there on her hip. They were together all day, every day, for two years.
Linda Drane-Burdick: “When was the first time you heard the name Zanny?”
Cindy: “… sometime in March (2006).”




Chapter Thirteen
The Most Incredible Hoax, Ever
*****************

Advance Chapter Preview for Readers
Linda Drane-Burdick: “All right. If Casey wasn't working in 2007 and 2008, how did she get money?”
Cindy: “I don't know. I mean, she borrowed a lot of money from me.”
Linda Drane-Burdick: “I don't believe you said -- did you discuss that {your credit card} with Casey?”
Cindy: “Yes, I did.”
Linda Drane-Burdick: “And what did Casey tell you about - that?”
Cindy: “She told me that she had -- you know, she was buying certain things, and it just kind of added up. She really didn’t keep track of it. She didn’t realize how much had accrued.”



*****************
Reporter’s Note for Readers
Cindy pressured Casey to voluntarily give Caylee over to her. Cindy’s brother Rick, kept in touch with their mother, Shirley, on a regular basis. Shirley told Rick that Cindy did everything she could to get legal custody away from Casey. When did that start? While Casey was still in the hospital holding her newborn. But Casey resisted.
Rick (Casey’s uncle): “Well, then my mom told me that Cindy threatened Casey with taking Caylee away from her two or three times. Cindy told Shirley that she couldn’t throw Casey out of the house, because Casey would try to take her {Caylee with her}.”
*****************

Reporting Casey Anthony’s Arrest
By the first week of June, 2005 George was back home and Cindy was leaving for work as usual early each morning. There was something new in the Anthony family routine. Cindy was followed out the door by Casey with Caylee on her hip. They left together and hung with her friends all day.
Nothing happening in Hopespring Drive eluded Cindy’s notice. Casey’s schedule didn’t fit an event planner’s hours at Universal Studios, and Casey didn’t care. When people commented about her strange hours, she announced she changed jobs. Her new job might be as an “on-call” sales clerk at Sports Authority.

Investigators interviewed her friend, Ryan, who reported calls he got from Casey’s parents at his job at Sports Authority.
Ryan Paisley: “At one point her mom called me, and at that time I was like twenty-one {years old}, um I was working at Sports Authority”
Yuri Melich: “Uh huh .”
Ryan Paisley: “And I guess at that time she was telling her mom she that she worked at Sports Authority with me.”
Yuri Melich: “Hmm.”
Ryan Paisley: “But she never worked there. She just hung out with me.”
George wasn’t subtle about checking up on his daughter’s work habits. He had been away for six months and wasn’t up to speed on what Casey was up to. Just after he came back to Hopespring Drive, he went into the local Sports Authority to confirm for himself that Casey wasn’t working there
Prosecutor Jeff Ashton: All right. So -- where were we? There's one incident I want to talk about that you reference in some of your prior statements to law enforcement. It has to do with Sports Authority, something about something that happened at Sports Authority. Do you know what I'm talking about?
George: “Uh-huh .”
Jeff Ashton: “Explain to me what that incident is.
George: “Well Casey told us she was working part-time or like an on-call basis for a company called Sports Authority.”

Jeff Ashton: “So this was after Caylee was born?”
George: “Uh-huh .”
Jeff Ashton: “All right. So, after you came back from the separation, you've described this incident with the Sports Authority.”
George: “It was June of 2006 when I came back.”
Jeff Ashton: “Oh, June '06.”
George: “I went out to Sports Authority and I think I told you guys, I actually went inside, and I confronted the manager. I asked Ryan {Paisley – Casey’s friend}, I said, ‘Ryan, did you work with Casey?’ {he said} ‘No, she doesn’t work here.’”
Jeff Ashton: “Okay.”
George: “…I just had feelings that things weren't just going the way maybe they should have -- how can I say this -- when she was supposed to be somewhere, and I found out she wasn't at that particular spot {Sports Authority}.”
Jeff Ashton: “All right.”
George: “So I went to take this a little bit further. I went to Waterford Lakes shopping center, to another Sports Authority and wanted to know one day just - number one, if she was there, great, terrific. I was going to be happy.”
Jeff Ashton: “Right.”


George: “I go in there and I didn't see her. I asked a sales associate who was working at a counter if Casey was there. This guy said: ‘Casey who? And I said: Oh, my gosh.’ I says, Casey Anthony. I said: ‘She's about five-foot-one inches tall, a very beautiful girl with brown hair. That's my daughter. She's been working here off and on.’ And he said: ‘I don't know.’ I say ...”
George: “And I don't remember the manager's specific name, but when I told him who I was, what I was there for, he says, ‘We have no Casey who works here at all’. He escorted me back to the break room where they had the schedule and stuff at and there was probably, like, 25 or 30 names back there. And he went through one by one and he says, ‘There's no Casey that works here. Could she be going under another name?’ And I says: ‘No. Her name is Casey
Jeff Ashton: “What schedule did she claim that she was working?”
George: “She'd be working, like, 10:00 in the morning to 2:00 in the afternoon, could be 1:00 to 5:00.”
Jeff Ashton: “What is it about that circumstance that made you go to those lengths? In other words, there must have been some precipitating event that made you say I've got to figure this out. What was that precipitating event?”
George: “Well, not to pry too much into my children's private life, but when you don't see a paycheck or a paystub, or you don't see certain things that just don't add up in your mind, you've got to investigate a little bit. You have to look into something.”
Jeff Ashton: “Sure.”
George: “That just doesn't make too much sense.”

Jeff Ashton: “I can imagine that your discoveries at Sports Authority vexed you to some considerable extent. Would that be a fair statement?”
George: “That's a fair statement.”
Cindy liked to stay a step ahead of George. She already knew Casey was lying about work, but she had the use of Cindy’s bank credit card so she didn’t have to work. But she didn’t tell George that.
Jeff Ashton: “What did you do?”
George: “Called my wife, Cindy, and I said, ‘Well she's not here {Sports Authority}.’”
Jeff Ashton: “And was Cindy supportive of that or was she upset with you that…”
George: “Oh, to say the word upset, yes.”
Jeff Ashton: “Did you discuss with Cindy confronting Casey with what you had found?”
George: “Oh, as a matter of fact, I did. I told Cindy, I says: ‘Well, I'm just going to -- I'm just going to tell her I was there {Spots Authority}.’ She says: ‘No, George. I'll handle it’. And I says, ‘No.’ I said: ‘We're going to handle it together.’ And I remember Cindy and her and I sitting down, and Casey became very, very irritated with us as to why I'm checking up on her.”
Jeff Ashton: “What did she say?”


George: “So it was just a matter of going back and forth. And finally, I just said, ‘You know, that's fine.’ You know.”
Jeff Ashton: “Was this during the separation that this all happened, or was this before or after?”
George: “This was right after we got back together.”
Cindy arranged with her bank to issue a second credit card in her name with a $5000 limit and a zero balance which she passed on to Casey for walking around money. Cindy paid the bills every month and monitored purchases on the monthly statement. She saw charges for diapers and clothes for Caylee, lunch with friends, and gas for the car. Her daughter was a big-time user of text messaging and Casey was paying her cellphone bills with Cindy’s credit card. Casey didn’t use Cindy’s card to pay for repairs on her car. Whenever it needed to be fixed, George took care of it. Anyway, the title was in his name, he had his own set of keys and drove it from time to time. Every loose end was tied up and everything that happened came under the watchful eye of Cindy.
Casey’s work-free lifestyle worked so long as Casey followed Cindy’s rules. That was the unspoken arrangement Cindy and Casey had until the day Caylee disappeared” almost two years to the day after George returned to Hopespring Drive. The lead prosecutor asked Cindy about the $5000 in purchases Casey accumulated over two years on Cindy’s credit card beginning when George moved back home.
Linda Drane-Burdick: “All right. If Casey wasn't working in 2007 and 2008, how did she get the money?”.


Cindy: “I don't know. I mean, she borrowed a lot of money from me.” (Flag #14).
Linda Drane-Burdick: “I don't believe you said -- did you discuss that {your credit card} with Casey?”
Cindy: “Yes, I did.”
Linda Drane-Burdick: “And what did Casey tell you about - that?”
Cindy: “She told me that she had -- you know, she was buying certain things, and it just kind of added up. She really didn’t keep track of it. She didn’t realize how much had accrued.”
Casey never could get a credit card in her name, and neither could George. Casey had no income whatsoever after Caylee was born because she had no job. All her expenses were paid with Cindy’s plastic. Ms. Drane-Burdick checked with Cindy’s bank and confirmed Cindy was the only one in the Anthony family with any kind of debit or credit card. After all, she was the only one in the house with any steady income for the last twenty years. There was nobody else except Cindy who qualified for any credit in the Anthony home. The prosecutor asked Cindy how much in bills Casey racked up.
Linda Drane-Burdick: “How much do you think?”
Cindy: “I have no idea. Probably thousands.”
Linda Drane Burdick: “Okay. This is money that you freely gave to her?”
Cindy: “Yes.”

Linda Drane-Burdick: “How much do you think?”
Cindy: Probably – probably, around $5,000.”
Linda Drane-Burdick: “Okay. I imagine that wasn't all in one lump…"
Cindy: “No”.
Linda Drane-Burdick:” …sum?”
Cindy: “No.”
Linda Drane-Burdick: “Who was the bank on that card?”
Cindy: “I'm not sure if it was CitiBank or not.”
Linda Drane-Burdick: “What kinds of things was she buying on your card?”
Cindy: “I don't even know. I never saw the statements.” {Flag# 21}
Cindy finessed her answers when asked if she saw the bank statements on the credit cards in her name. She suggested to the lead prosecutor that her bank statements mysteriously vanished during those 24 months, and how the bills due were paid was a total mystery to Cindy, even though the bank approved all of the purchases made with Cindy’s card every month.
Nobody from the state attorney’s office asked Cindy how could the bank keep her credit card account open if no one was making monthly payments. Cindy claimed that even though she never paid her credit card bill, somehow the bank didn’t cancel the card, which was issued from her account. Cindy was hiding from

detectives that she knew about her daughter’s jobless status for two years and that she talked to Universal Studios and Sports Authority herself to confirm she wasn’t working. After all, it would be embarrassing for Cindy if she had to admit to investigators that she knew Casey quit her job to keep Caylee safe from George. Cindy always seemed to know everything, and she had her reasons.
Linda Drane-Burdick: “Okay. Why didn't you see the statements? Do you think the statements actually came to your house?”
Cindy: “Probably.”
Linda Drane-Burdick:” …and then -- they were disposed of?”
Cindy: “You know, possibility.” {Flag #15}
In the media, there were no journalists to be found who took time to read the case files showing Cindy let Casey use her credit card for the two years she was unemployed. If anyone in the media mentioned the transfer of Cindy’s bank credit card at all, they chose to report it as Casey’s “theft” of money from Cindy, which is not what Cindy and the record itself said. The case record confirms Cindy admitted to investigators upfront she willingly gave Casey her credit card so Casey could pay bills for the two years she didn’t have a job. Casey had zero income during that time, yet she lived and spent money like her young peers, day-to-day. At the end of two years, her purchases maxed out Cindy’s bank card at $5000.


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