25-YEAR-OLD CASEY ANTHONY has walked free from a jail in Orange County, two weeks after being acquitted of murdering her 2-year-old daughter.
Anthony’s trial, for the murder of toddler Caylee in 2008, had gripped the United States – particularly given the decision of prosecutors to seek the death penalty for Casey if she was convicted of first-degree murder.
ABC News reported that she was escorted to a waiting car by two security guards armed with semi-automatic rifles, amid a media scrum outside the jail where she had been detained.
Around 300 members of the public were also present, Reuters said, with attendees holding signs both supporting and condemning her.
Although she was acquitted of Caylee’s murder on July 5, Casey was found guilty of four other counts of providing false information to a law enforcement officer, and was awaiting sentencing on those matters.
At the sentencing hearing on Friday her lawyers gave notice that they would be appealing all four counts – leaving Anthony free to leave detention in the meantime.
She has spent three years in police custody since her arrest over Caylee’s death, which she said occurred when Caylee drowned in a swimming pool.
Prosecutors claimed instead that Casey had covered her daughter’s face with duct tape, leaving her unable to breathe.
The jury – which was taken exclusively of people from Tampa Bay, amid fears that citizens of Orlando could not remain impartial amid the heavy media coverage – took just two hours of deliberations to acquit her.