Caylee's Remains ID'd, But Who Has the Legal Advantage?

This is a rush transcript from "On the Record ," December 19, 2008. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

GRETA VAN SUSTEREN, FOX NEWS HOST: Tonight: Well, you hoped this would not be the answer, but it is. It's Caylee Anthony. That's her skull with duct tape in that bag abandoned. The medical examiner now confirms the identity of the human remains found.


DR. JAN GARAVAGLIA, ORANGE COUNTY MEDICAL EXAMINER: With regret, I'm here to inform you that the skeletal remains found on December 11 are those of the missing toddler, Caylee Anthony.


VAN SUSTEREN: The cause of death, homicide by undetermined means. Now, the Orange County sheriff earlier today said this.


SHERIFF KEVIN BEARY, ORANGE COUNTY: First and foremost, our priority from day one was to locate little Caylee Anthony. We have stayed the course and we will continue to do so until we have thoroughly completed our investigation into this tragedy.

Many of you have questions and concerns regarding the tips we received in August concerning this event and how those tips were processed. I share the same questions and concerns, and for us to get to those facts, we must conduct a complete and thorough administrative review into this matter so we can make some informed conclusions.


VAN SUSTEREN: Also huge news tonight. We know the identity of the meter reader who found little Caylee's remains, revealing himself to the world earlier today.


ROY KRONK, FOUND REMAINS: I'll be reading from a prepared statement. Good afternoon. My name is Roy Kronk. On Thursday, December 11, during the course of my duties as a county employee, I discovered and reported to my management and appropriate authorities the remains of a human body located in a wooded area close to the Suburban Drive in east Orange County.

As the Orange County sheriff's office reported yesterday, back in August of this year, I had previously reported to Crimeline and to the sheriff's communications center that I had spotted something suspicious, a bag in the same area. I have been and will continue to cooperate fully with the ongoing investigation by the sheriff's office and the FBI. I have provided detailed information to law enforcement, but I respectfully decline at this time to get into the details of what I saw at the crime scene.


VAN SUSTEREN: FOX's Phil Keating is live on the ground in Orlando. Phil, it's been quite a day, but first let's talk about this meter reader. Have we -- has anyone yet disclosed what it was he saw in August that prompted those three phone calls?

PHIL KEATING, FOX CORRESPONDENT: No. It was actually quite an anti- climactic coming-out performance by him. Of course, no one revealed his name all week. Several organizations believed that they had his name, and then yesterday, when it was revealed that the same guy who discovered the remains just happened to be the same guy who called three nights in a row in August, giving a tip that Caylee's remains may actually be down the street in those woods. So he has an attorney now representing him, paid for by county taxpayers. And basically, what you just there was all he had to say.

The question on everyone's mind, of course, is, how deep into the woods was this bag? Did you smell the decomposition when you drove back and forth by it? Why didn't you go in and take a peek in the bag at the time. And the number (ph) of calls that he made, or the tip line calls that he made back in August, on the 11th, 12th and 13th, have yet to be made public. So a lot of unanswered questions regarding his tips.

However, the detectives and the detective that were involved in following those tips and ultimately dismissing those tips without ever finding the remains in the woods -- well, they are now all a subject of an internal review. And at this point, the sheriff says he's not throwing anyone under the bus.

In the meantime, it's been a very sad day for the so untold numbers of people who hoped and prayed that just maybe little Caylee would be found alive. Of course, today it's official, not too unexpected. Take a look right here at the end of the crime scene tape. This is the memorial that has been gathering, stuffed animals, a lot of teddy bears, a lot of balloons, a lot of hand-written cards for little Caylee.

Today, after 2 o'clock eastern, once the news broke that the DNA recovered on the remains and the known of Caylee did, in fact, match, people came out here. And I've got to tell you they were crying. They had tears running down. And several of them said, I believe in an eye for an eye, and they definitely want punishment for Casey Anthony.

And in fact tonight, just minutes ago down the street, 20 houses down, at the home of the grandparents of Caylee Anthony, the attorney for Casey, Jose Baez, left, as did the brother Lee. And both times, the crowd of about 20 people gathered outside the house were yelling across the street, Baby killer. So that's the mood in the neighborhood tonight. But certainly closure for so many people. They are very much touched by this little story of little Caylee Anthony.

VAN SUSTEREN: Well, there's a lot more to do on this, and one of them is to seek justice for that -- for that little girl. Phil, thank you.


VAN SUSTEREN: Orange County's chief medical examiner making that grim announcement earlier today.


GARAVAGLIA: With regret, I'm here to inform you that the skeletal remains found on December 11 are those of the missing toddler, Caylee Anthony. As our usual protocol, the next of kin has been notified prior to making this information public. This identification was made by nuclear DNA taken from a portion of the remains and compared to a known profile of Caylee Anthony.

My examination of the body and evidence is complete, barring no further bones being found, and the anthropological examination will be finished up shortly. The remains are completely skeletonized, with no visible soft tissue present and no ante-mortem trauma evident, meaning that there was no trauma to the bones prior to death. Toxicology testing is still to be completed on the bone and hair. While this analysis may prove to be informative, it will be difficult to determine levels from these specimens, and thus, will not be definitive in helping to determine the cause of death.

The manner of death, though, is an opinion based on available information, including examination of the body, information from the scene, as well as circumstantial evidence. Based on all of this, the manner of death in this case is homicide. The cause of death will be listed as a homicide by undetermined means. Should other pertinent information become available, the cause of death may be revisited.


VAN SUSTEREN: Forensic pathologist Dr. Michael Baden joins us.


VAN SUSTEREN: Dr. Baden, homicide by undetermined means -- other than sort of circumstantially as the case may move forward, looking at the skeletal remains, is this the best we can expect in terms of knowing what happened?

BADEN: Greta, I don't think it's the best we can expect because the tests aren't complete. You can't make a diagnosis, in my opinion, until all the tests you sent for have been completed, especially in this case the toxicology, because whenever we do toxicology on decomposed or skeletonized bodies, we never look for quantitation or levels. It's, Is a drug that can kill you there or not? If it's arsenic, if it's strychnine, if it's morphine and it shouldn't be there, then that could be a good cause of death.

And Greta, in this case, remember, the police, the sheriff's department, gave the FBI material from the trunk of the car, and they tested it and found chloroform. And they found that she had been on the Internet, inquiring about chloroform. So if there's chloroform in the bone marrow or in the hair, that could clarify what the cause of death is.

VAN SUSTEREN: Well, so I guess it would have been probably a better idea for the medical examiner to say "at this time" homicide by undetermined means, would be a better idea. And when do we -- when are these tests are likely to occur and results so that maybe this is not undetermined?

BADEN: Well, those tests are in progress, and it depends how they were sent out to the laboratories that do this. Those tests themselves only take a few days to do. It depends on whether this was a request as a rapid test or not. And it's just that the -- they shouldn't have sent it out if they weren't going to wait for the answer.

And normally, what we would do is say "pending toxicology," as the -- call it temporary cause of death is pending toxicology. Toxicology comes back negative, and then it's undetermined. Toxicology comes back positive, you don't need the level. If there's chloroform present, in the absence of every cause of death and the circumstances, it would be chloroform poisoning.

VAN SUSTEREN: What question do you have, if any, for the medical examiner?

BADEN: Well, are they doing hair analysis to see whether or not Caylee had been given chloroform in the past? See, the chloroform goes into -- when we take it into the body, it goes into the hair and stays there. And the hair grows about a half an inch a month, so by doing segmental analysis, then one can determine the -- whether it was given to her before.

VAN SUSTEREN: Here's what I'm curious about, and it'll take other experts, is when was that body placed there? Was it last summer, when Casey was out of jail, or did it happen after she went to jail? Because that makes a big very sort of simple difference.

BADEN: Oh, that's right. A lot of that depends on what the meter reader saw, when he saw it, but also I think...

VAN SUSTEREN: Bugs and botany and everything else. (INAUDIBLE) go.

WILLIAMS: And the body -- but I think it also will depend on the entomologist on looking at the different insects that are present.

VAN SUSTEREN: Dr. Baden, thank you.

BADEN: Thanks, Greta.

VAN SUSTEREN: Up next, more on tonight's huge breaking news out of Florida. You hear Casey Anthony in her own words from a chilling jailhouse visit. Watch and listen closely to what mother Casey Anthony says about her daughter, Caylee. There are clues in these tapes. You go to the jailhouse next.

Plus, Casey Anthony's lawyer meets with his client behind bars, and then he comes out swinging. It's all on tape. We have it. That's next.


VAN SUSTEREN: Breaking news out of Florida. Tonight, little Caylee Anthony's remains positively identified. Now, Casey Anthony, the child's mother, sits behind bars tonight charged with Caylee's murder. Casey says she left Caylee with a baby-sitter and never saw her daughter again.

On July 30, during a jailhouse visit with her parents, Casey talked about Caylee as if she were alive.


CASEY ANTHONY, CAYLEE'S MOTHER: ... Need to care of yourself.

CINDY ANTHONY, CAYLEE'S GRANDMOTHER: She's not going to hurt Caylee, is she, Casey? She's not going to hurt Caylee, is she (INAUDIBLE)

CASEY ANTHONY: No. I told you, in my gut, I know she's still OK. I can feel it, Mom. I know she's still OK. We're going to get our little girl back, and she's going to be just as she was. I'll never let anybody outside of...


CASEY ANTHONY: Trust me. I've said the same thing. I'm going to be crazy, overprotective mom at that point, but I don't care. I think it's...


CASEY ANTHONY: ... Well deserved.

CINDY ANTHONY: You've always been a protective mommy.

CASEY ANTHONY: Yes, well, like I said, the crazy. I won't let her out of my sight. So I'll do whatever I have to. I know we'll figure all that out when it comes to it. We'll figure out -- I mean, I've been thinking about jobs and schedules and what I can do, you know, how I can...

CINDY ANTHONY: You don't have to work. You don't have to work (INAUDIBLE)

CASEY ANTHONY: Well, we'll figure all of that stuff out. We'll figure everything out. But I want it to overlap to where we can all have our time. And I'll be with her. She's not just my little girl. And I know -- I mean, she's my baby. She'll always be my baby. But she will always be your baby and Dad's baby and Lee's baby. She's our little girl.


VAN SUSTEREN: Former prosecutor Pam Bondi and criminal defense attorney Jeff Brown join us in Florida. Jeff, I just cringe at the thought -- I mean, here you got her saying on the jail tape, "I'm going to be that crazy, overprotective mother. I won't let her out of my sight." And then you flash to pictures up of her when the child is missing, out clubbing!

JEFF BROWN, CRIMINAL DEFENSE ATTORNEY: Right. Right. Well, I mean, the defense still -- you know, you still have to say the defense is either one of two things. Either somebody else did this, and then if that's the case, I think she needs to come forward and say somebody else did this. Or the defense is going to have to be that it was an accident. If it's an accident, this tape crushes her. It really -- it's just devastating.

But if it is -- the first defense is still viable, that is, that somebody else did this, well, that's July when she makes that recording. The meter reader is there -- the utility worker is there in August. There may be an argument that somehow, he's involved with this. That's still -- it may not be the best defense, but it's still a defense that at this point is still out there.

VAN SUSTEREN: Yes, but here's the odd point. And I'm going to go to the screenwriter. And you look at, like -- you know, here we have -- this is where she lives. That's the first circle that I've drawn. And this is -- this is where they find the remains. And if you -- if you look, I mean, it's just not that far. I mean, it's, like -- it is so close to her home. And you're, like, What are the odds that, you know, someone is going to, you know -- you know, someone else is going to dump the baby there? I mean, that -- that's terrible.

BROWN: But if somebody else is -- if somebody's involved that she knows -- and for whatever reason, let's just say that it's a drug debt or it's something that's out there that somebody else has this child, she doesn't want to give the name up -- and that person then kills the child, they're going to want to -- want her to be framed for this. They're going to want to put the body somewhere where she's going to be held accountable for it. So I -- that would make sense.

Now, again, I'm not saying that is the defense, but if her argument is that somebody else did this, ten it would make sense that the person that did it doesn't want to get caught, they're going to frame her, they're going to put the body somewhere near her.

VAN SUSTEREN: Here's -- I assume Pam would argue this, that -- how I would, if were the prosecutor -- and I'll let Pam do it -- but I say, you know, if someone doesn't want to get caught, why would they put the baby right near the house? I mean, they're not trying to frame her, they're trying not to get caught. Pam?

PAM BONDI, FORMER PROSECUTOR: Exactly, Greta. And Greta, I was out there. That house, even on your map, it looks so much further than it really is. That lot where that baby was found is right around the corner from her house. She basically got lucky for a few months by the area flooding and them not fighting the baby. But yes, I agree.

And if anything at that crime scene, anything at all, which we've heard it possibly will, tie it into the Anthony home, she's gone. That's all it's going to take. And I mean, this woman is despicable and we now know that, especially by all her lies, and that jail phone call is just disgusting, where she's trying to manipulate her parents.

VAN SUSTEREN: But Pam, take a look at -- take a look at how close this -- where they found the body is to the road. I just put that up on the screen. I mean, it's -- where they have that tent -- I mean, it's tented (ph), it's, like, 10 or 15 feet. Like, it is a little bit bizarre that it wasn't discovered sooner. I mean, it certainly looks like -- I mean, it doesn't even look like anyone tried to hide it very well.

BONDI: You know, Greta -- and again, I just -- well, and look at all her lies, her ridiculous lies that she got caught in that made no sense at all. But if you -- if you look at the crime scene, I just really think she got so lucky, the time of the year -- I mean, you know, I've lived in Florida my whole life, and when it floods, it floods. And in that hot Florida sun -- I just think she got lucky for so long. And thank goodness that they found the body before the trial. Could you imagine if some -- you know, if it had gone to trial without a body and something went wrong, and then they found her little body that tied into the Anthony home?

VAN SUSTEREN: We're going to take a quick break, if both of you will just stand by.

Up next: Guess who's pretty mad tonight? Casey Anthony's lawyer. After meeting with his client behind bars, Casey's lawyer takes some direct shots at the Orange County sheriff's office. We're going to show you that tape. You will hear the lawyer for yourself.

Then: Well, guess who's not crying uncle tonight? The governor of Illinois. We have him on tape, and what a tape it is. This Illinois governor got on a roll today. We're going to play the entire tape. Then former Arkansas governor Mike Huckabee will respond.


VAN SUSTEREN: At 1:45 PM today, about 15 minutes before the world learned the news, jailed mother Casey Anthony was informed by a jail chaplain. It's official. It's Caylee. Later, Caylee's lawyer stops to see her. After speaking to his client behind bars, Casey's lawyer comes out and comes out swinging, slamming the Orange County sheriff's office.


JOSE BAEZ, CASEY ANTHONY'S ATTORNEY: I know the million-dollar question that everybody wants to ask me is how is she doing, how did she take the news, what did she say? And the truth of the matter is, I'm not going to disclose any of that. The chaplain came in and notified her through the jail. Somehow, they felt the chaplain was more important to know before I would be notified, so -- but like I said, we were here. We were prepared, and we weren't going to allow them to do that to her.


VAN SUSTEREN: Pam Bondi and Jeff Brown are back with us. Jeff, looking at the map -- and I'm going to circle where the home is, the Anthony home, where the child was living with her grandparents and with her mother -- and you look, like, behind the house, there's this giant water area, which would have been a much more effective way to -- or place to even get rid of a child. And you think -- where they finally found the remains, it's almost like she got tossed from the side of the car because it was so close to the street. It's bizarre, isn't it.

BROWN: No, it is. And every time you try a case, there's always something that pops up and the prosecutors hate it. And it may not be the actual defense, but at this point, it does look like they have a defense that says, Hey, listen, my client's in jail during this. This body was not found when they did a cadaver search there in this very area where the utility worker pointed out. And so the body had to be placed there after my client's in jail, couldn't have done it. It looks it was tossed from the side of the road. And right now, that might be a very viable defense. It might be all that she has.

VAN SUSTEREN: And Pam -- what Pam and -- I guess what we all know is that the prosecution knows a lot more...

BROWN: She's shaking her head, right.

VAN SUSTEREN: Well, know that the prosecution has more facts, at this point. And we don't know what's in that bag, if there's going to be insects that are going to somehow indicate that she was there much longer from the summer...

BONDI: Right.

VAN SUSTEREN: ... Or whether there's going to be some sort of -- some growth, some of the leaves the botanist -- but even -- look at the scene where the body was actually found. I mean, it's -- it's so -- it's so rugged.

Pam, so do you agree with me that the prosecution's probably sitting on a whole lot of information right now that there's a risk to the defense?

BONDI: I sure do, Greta, and especially by what -- the medical examiner, she said it's a homicide, and she based that on all the circumstances that she's knows of. She's not calling it accidental. Homicide is death at the hands of another person. So clearly, she's reviewed all the facts.


BONDI: And yes, Greta, they've got to be sitting on a ton of stuff that we don't know, as they should be doing right now.

BROWN: But it's going to get disclosed.

VAN SUSTEREN: Unless they're -- yes, unless they're reckless. I mean, this -- the presence of skeletal remains enough is not -- I mean, if it's -- it's an undetermined homicide (SIC), you can't say that's a homicide. There's got to be something more to convince or persuade this medical examiner that this is a homicide.

BONDI: Exactly. Exactly. And that's what she was going on, and that's what -- that's what...


BONDI: ... Medical examiners do.



BROWN: Well, yes. But why not release it? If that's the case, why not release that information? Remember, for the viewers, we have an open- book discovery in Florida, which means everything is going to get disclosed out there. So you know...

VAN SUSTEREN: Would you expect that?

BROWN: ... Why not disclose that now?

BONDI: Not yet.

VAN SUSTEREN: Jeff, would you expect that? Is that a requirement? I mean, if I were the prosecutor, I wouldn't let the defense have anything until I had to. And likewise, as the defense...

BROWN: No, no, no.

VAN SUSTEREN: ... I'd want everything right away.

BROWN: No, in Florida, you're going to get it 10 days after they file the charge, so that discovery is already due. It's going to be ongoing as this case is investigated. So as soon as that information comes to law enforcement or the state attorney's office, they've got to disclose it, which is why a good defense lawyer isn't going to tell you what his defense is right now because if they do have these bombs to drop on you...

BONDI: Right.

BROWN: ... To show that it's clearly not accidental, then, you know, you're going to have to shape your defense around it.

BONDI: Right. And right now, prosecutors are calling this an active crime scene, and that's why they're able to get away with doing that. Once they release that crime scene, it's going to be fair game to the defense.

BROWN: Sure.

VAN SUSTEREN: At what point must the prosecution turn over to the defense the contents of that bag?

BONDI: When they determine that that crime scene, Greta, is complete, when they determine that autopsy is complete, when they determine that they have all the evidence back, all the toxicology, all the information they need. And it's really a crazy, unique situation because, you know, cases, as you know, rarely happen this way.

VAN SUSTEREN: And let me just add -- and I know Jeff would add it, too -- is that so the prosecution gets to decide all those sorts of times when they think it's complete, so they basically can string it out and not give it to the defense until someone screams at them, right, Jeff? And you got five seconds.

BROWN: Yes. Exactly. And you'll file a motion, screaming at the judge, saying, They didn't give it to me. Right. Exactly.

VAN SUSTEREN: All right. Thank you both. Coming up...

BROWN: Thanks, Greta.

BONDI: Thank you, Greta.

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