Published November 05, 2008
The judge in the case of the missing Florida toddler who is presumed dead agreed Wednesday to delay her mother's check fraud case until after her first-degree murder trial.
Casey Anthony, 22, was not present at her Orlando arraignment hearing for fraud, but is expected to stand trial in January for allegedly murdering her little girl Caylee.
The charges of forging checks using a friend's checkbook are unrelated.
"Judicial economy may be best served by hearing the murder case first," said Orange County Circuit Judge Stan Strickland, rejecting the argument of prosecutors who had fought trying Anthony for murder before fraud.
Caylee disappeared in June, two months shy of her third birthday, but wasn't reported missing until July.
Anthony said she left Caylee with a baby sitter, but police contend that's a lie.
The little girl has not been found, and authorities say she was killed. In addition to first-degree murder, her mother is charged with manslaughter and other offenses. Anthony has pleaded not guilty.
Last week, a report surfaced — and was quickly quashed — that convicted wife-killer Scott Peterson was writing letters to Anthony in jail.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.