Published November 17, 2008
The grandparents of missing toddler Caylee Anthony are expected to issue a statement this week through their new family representative, the Orlando Sentinel reported.
Michelle Bart, who took over as Anthony family spokeswoman, said the girl's grandparents, Cindy and George Anthony, will make a comment this week, the paper said.
"Hopefully, by the end of the week the public will understand why we've been searching for Caylee Marie," Bart told the Sentinel. "We truly believe that Caylee Marie is alive."
The toddler has been missing since June. Her mother, 22-year-old Casey Anthony, is behind bars and charged with her murder.
Bart, the spokeswoman for the Kid Finders Network, took over as the family's representative from Larry Garrison, after the Anthony family's attorney accused him of hiding a payment from a TV network for photos of the child, the paper said.
Garrison was retained in August to speak to the media on behalf of the Anthonys. He resigned Wednesday.
"Due to the erratic behavior over the last several months exhibited by the Anthony family, Larry Garrison is resigning as their spokesperson," he said in a prepared statement.
"It is my opinion that others have manipulated them into situations that would not dignify the family. I can no longer be part of that behavior."
Anthony family lawyer Mark Nejame laughed at the statement and said it was released minutes after Garrison learned he'd been fired, MyFOXOrlando.com reported.
Nejame said Garrison was canned for pocketing money he demanded for interviews with Caylee's grandparents, George and Cindy Anthony.
Casey Anthony has pleaded not guilty to charges of first-degree murder, aggravated child abuse, aggravated manslaughter and four counts of lying to investigators about the disappearance of her daughter.
She didn't report Caylee missing until July. The toddler disappeared two months shy of her third birthday.
Forensic tests released last month confirmed that hair found in the trunk of Anthony's Pontiac Sunfire came from a decomposing body. DNA evidence suggests a corpse had been in the car's trunk.
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 believe she was killed.