Casey Anthony trial: Defense launches case with attack on forensic evidence
Three years to the day after Caylee died, the defense began to make its case in the Casey Anthony trial. Seven forensic scientists and crime scene investigators were called to the stand.
An FBI forensic document examiner testified on Thursday that she found no evidence of a heart-shaped sticker or heart-shaped residue on a piece of duct tape that prosecutors say was the murder weapon used by Casey Anthony to suffocate her two-year-old daughter Caylee.Skip to next paragraph
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Lorie Gottesman, a 20-year forensic specialist at the Federal Bureau of Investigation, also told the jury that she found no match between black plastic bags containing a portion of Caylee’s skeletal remains and similar black plastic bags seized from the Anthony home.
The testimony came on the first day of the defense case and Day 20 of the Casey Anthony murder trial, as defense attorney Jose Baez called to the witness stand seven forensic scientists and crime scene investigators in an attempt to cast doubt on the state’s case.
IN PICTURES: Photos of the day
The action came three years to the day – June 16, 2008 – that both the prosecution and the defense say Caylee died.
Ms. Anthony has been charged with first-degree murder in the death of the toddler. If convicted she faces a possible death sentence.
In an unusual twist, Ms. Gottesman also testified that the only traceable DNA evidence found on the duct tape discovered near Caylee’s remains belonged to her.
“How did it happen,” Mr. Baez asked.
“I have no idea how it happened or when,” Gottesman told the jury.
Baez asked if she sneezed on the evidence.
“Throughout the entire time you had these items you exercised great care,” Baez asked.
“Yes,” she said.
Outline of a heart
In earlier testimony Gottesman told the jury that when examining the duct tape she used a high-tech device with special lights and filters that is capable of identifying images that are beyond the range of the human eye to see.
During the prosecution’s case, earlier this week, an FBI fingerprint expert testified that she observed what appeared to be a dime-sized residue outline in the shape of a heart on a portion of the duct tape that allegedly covered Caylee’s face. A supervisor also said she saw the residue outline.
The expert, Elizabeth Fontaine, continued conducting fingerprint tests. Later, when she attempted to photograph the outline, she said she was unable to see it.