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Casey Anthony trial: Should investigators have found Caylee four months sooner?

A meter reader says at the Casey Anthony trial he first told investigators of Caylee's remains four months before they were recovered. Was an opportunity lost to collect better evidence?

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Kronk was asked by Defense Attorney Cheney Mason whether he saw the same grey vinyl bag when he returned to the scene four months later on Dec. 11.

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“No,” he said.

Kronk said he wasn’t sure the skull was real, or even a skull. He said he prodded the object with his meter-reader stick “and tipped it up. I apologize for doing so, but I didn’t know what it was.”

He added: “I gently pivoted it up.”

“It wasn’t stuck in the mud, was it?”

“No,” Kronk said.

Kronk’s testimony was different than the first written statement he gave to police in early 2009. In that statement he said that the bag opened and a small human skull with duct tape and hair dropped out.

“That was my original statement,” he acknowledged. He said he “made a mistake” in the statement.

“Did the skull come out in any way,” Mr. Mason asked.

“No sir.”

“You recognize that you said that under oath before, but now you are saying something else,” Mason said.

“That whole period for me is a little fuzzy,” Kronk said. “After finding what I found, it kind of unnerved me.”

Kronk’s testimony came on Day 30 of the first-degree murder trial of Casey Anthony, the Florida mother accused of using chloroform and duct tape to kill her toddler daughter. Prosecutors say she kept the child’s body in the trunk of her car for several days before dumping it in the wooded area around the corner from the family home.

Defense lawyers maintain that Caylee accidentally drowned and that her mother, Casey, panicked. Rather than call police, she hid the body with the help of her father.

George Anthony denies any involvement.

In other testimony on Tuesday, the defense team called Mr. Anthony to the stand and confronted him with accusations that he had an extra-marital affair with Krystal Halloway, a former volunteer in the Caylee search effort.

“Did you have a romantic relationship with her,” Baez asked.

“No sir,” he said. “To me that is very funny.”

Baez wasn’t done. “Were you ever intimate with her,” he asked.

“No sir. That also is very funny.”

Mr. Anthony acknowledged going “a few times” to Ms. Halloway’s home, but he said his actions were noble. She had told him she was dying of a brain tumor and he said he went to comfort her.

The defense attorney also asked whether Mr. Anthony had ever told Ms. Halloway that Caylee’s death was “an accident that snowballed out of control.”

“That conversation was never there. I never confided in any volunteers,” Mr. Anthony said.

“You never told Krystal Halloway while the two of you were being romantic that this was an accident that snowballed out of control,” Baez asked.

“I never did.”

On cross-examination, Assistant State Attorney Jeffrey Ashton threw in a zinger question of his own.

“Did you ever tell [Halloway] that while your daughter was home on bond that you grabbed her by the throat, threw her up against a wall, and said ‘I know you did something to Caylee, where’s Caylee,’ ” Mr. Ashton asked.

Mr. Anthony responded: “No sir. I’d never do something like that.”

The trial is set to resume Wednesday morning.

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