Media catch Anthony trial lawyers' wrath

July 5, 2011 at 4:23 PM
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ORLANDO, Fla., July 5 (UPI) -- Lawyer Jose Baez says justice for mother and daughter was the "driving force" behind his defense of Florida mother Casey Anthony in daughter Caylee's death.

"My driving force has been for last three years has always been to make sure [there was] justice for Caylee and Casey because Casey did not murder Caylee," Baez said after Casey Anthony was cleared of her daughter's death. "Today our system of justice has not dishonored [Caylee's] memory by a false conviction."

A jury found Casey Anthony not guilty of first-degree murder, aggravated manslaughter and aggravated child abuse but found her guilty of four counts of lying to law enforcement officers. She was charged in the death of her 2-year-old daughter in the summer of 2008.

Defense and prosecutors swiped at media coverage of the case and trial, with attorneys expressing exasperation at the coverage.

"I think we should all take this as an opportunity to learn and realize that you cannot convict someone until they have their day in court," Baez said.

Orange County prosecutor Lawson Lamar said expenses could have been spared if media coverage hadn't been so intense and if legal counsel "is not rendered" in the public arena.

"We are disappointed with verdict today and surprised," Lamar said. "Our mountain of evidence did not eliminate in the jury's view every bit of reasonable doubt. We did our job. The jury did their job. This is justice in America."

Lamar and Baez praised each other's work in the courtroom.

Defense attorney Cheney Mason ripped what he called "incompetent talking heads" and others who "indulged in media assassination for three years.

He ripped lawyers and legal analysts for commenting on the case and drawing conclusions when they didn't "know a damned thing about it. Now you've learned a lesson."

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