Jurors in the Casey Anthony trial began to get a glimpse for the first time Wednesday of the family dynamics that surrounded Caylee Anthony's death.
On July 15, 2008, the day deputies from the Orange County Sheriff's office converged on the Anthony home, for a time it was unclear what they were responding to. For Sgt. Reginald Hosey it appeared it was both a domestic dispute and a missing child.
Judging from the interaction between Casey and her mother, Cindy, the sergeant thought Casey was merely trying to hide Caylee from a grandmother seeking custody. He thought if he could separate Casey from Cindy and reassure her that he didn't have a court order and was not about to take Caylee away from her, he would have a better chance at getting her to tell him where the child was located. His testimony was the first time jurors heard the combative relationship between Casey and Cindy factoring in as a potential element in Caylee's disappearance.
Earlier Wednesday jurors heard Casey's former friend Amy Huizenga testify that Casey talked about trying to keep Caylee away from the "drama" in her home due to her parents so-called impending divorce - but this was the first incidence in which Casey told police that Cindy was trying to 'take her daughter.'
Sgt. Hosey detailed for the jury how he walked Casey Anthony down the block for a moment of solitude to try to get her to shed some light on the situation:
"..just to reassure her...we didn't have any court orders to take the baby from her, we just wanted to make sure the child was ok...she was constantly talking about her and her mother not getting along and it was more so that she wanted to keep her mother from getting the child from her."
The issues between Cindy and Casey came up earlier when Casey's brother, Lee Anthony, took the stand. He was asked to read a portion of his deposition where he describes Casey's response to his probes: " She told me that my mother had numerous times thrown it in her face, my sister's face, that Casey was an unfit mother for Caylee and that Casey says 'maybe I am' and I went on to say that my mother had also referenced Caylee as being a mistake, but a great mistake - the best Casey has ever made."
Lee continued, "nothing was making sense to me. Why couldn't we go get Caylee and bring her home? There was no reason to fight with Mom at this point."
Casey and her mother Cindy continued to fight despite Caylee being "missing" at that late hour.
These early moments, before Casey mentions the nanny "taking" or "kidnapping" Caylee, and the process she goes through with both law enforcement and her family, were presented chronologically for the jury to hear moment-by-moment.
Casey began by telling Lee that Caylee was sleeping at the nanny's and that she didn't want to interrupt the sleeping routine. Lee offered to go pick her up, but Casey declined and said it was a bad idea. Lee asked his sister what was she going to say when police arrived. What reason would she give them for why they can't all go and pick her up?
"She just looked at me with no reaction... Then at that time she told me that she had not seen Caylee in 31 days, that she had been kidnapped and that the nanny took her." Lee said he was given the name Zenaida Fernandez Gonzalez shortly afterwards - a name he had never heard before. He reiterated that Casey was specific about the number - 31 days.
Throughout the evening Deputy Adriana Acevedo and Sgt. Reginald Hosey testified that George Anthony remained calm and quiet while Cindy was running through a range of emotions; at times upset, sad and angry. Casey also appeared calm and quiet. In cross-examination, Defense Attorney J. Cheney Mason probed Casey's lack of emotion further.
"When you walked with her (Casey) she had a flat affect?" Sgt. Hosey replied, "Yes."
"You know what that means, don't you?"
"Yes I do."