Last week, under a due date requirement required by Chief Justice Perry, some of the expert opinions to be offered in the capital murder trial against Casey Marie Anthony were released.
In a highly circumstantial case, it is common for the silent witnesses to be the ones who tell us the critical pieces to the puzzle we are working on, are under the chair.
Bugs and Plants do not lie.
Arguably the Entomology and Botany evidence and their respective expert evaluations of same will likely hold some of the heaviest weight in the mind of jurors who will be charged with reaching a verdict in the death penalty trial in the murder of Caylee Anthony.
Teaching a child not to step on a caterpillar is as valuable to the child as it is to the caterpillar.
Lord of The Flies Part Deux
Dr. Neal Haskell, is largely considered the pioneer of Forensic Entomology in the United States.
In fact, he is the first individual in this country to earn Masters and Doctorate degrees in the field in 1989 and then 1993 respectively at Purdue University.
I have respectfully referred to him in earlier work as ‘The Bug Dude”.
Dr. Michael Baden and his co-author Marion Roach dedicated an entire chapter in their book, Dead Reckoning, to his work. Dr. Haskell was the “first call” choice expert of Linda Kenney Baden, former defense counsel to Casey Anthony, as stated by his former protégé and defense entomology expert, Dr. Timothy Huntington.
Dr. Haskell’s report filed October 6, 2009 contains the only peer-reviewed expert conclusions offered in the case against Casey Anthony.
In no way am I undermining it’s exhaustive and thorough contents. For the purposes of this article in order to remain respectful to the sensitivity that we are talking about medicolegal death investigation information that sadly comes from the homicide of a 34 month old child. I will largely be paraphrasing.
Dr. Timothy Huntington, the defense team’s expert witness, has been deposed by the State of Florida in this case three times to date. A final deposition has yet to be released.
(Editors Note: Although Linda Kenney Baden withdrew as co-counsel last October because she was not going to get her expenses approved and paid for by the state of Florida, she is most definitely working on this case in some consulting sort of capacity as she was present and noted in Huntington’s deposition in December)
Between his depositions dated December 28, 2010 and January 2011, Dr. Huntington produced a preliminary report that analyzed Dr. Haskell’s report and entomologic specimens. We know that he learned during the first deposition that several samples from the trunk vacuumings of the Pontiac Sunfire had not been sent for analysis to Dr. Haskell until a few days earlier. Dr. Huntington was not expected to prepare an opinion on that evidence until after it’s submission to him. (more…)