Accusing local media in the Orlando, Florida, area of a "barrage" of coverage, Casey Anthony’s lead defense attorney asked Monday to have her death-penalty case moved from Orlando to Miami, Florida.
“The overwhelming majority of the media’s coverage of this case has been negative for the defendant,” says a defense motion filed in Orange County Circuit Court. Anthony, 23, is scheduled to go on trial on a first-degree murder charge in the death of her 2-year-old daughter Caylee. “The effects of the inflammatory and negative aspect of the media coverage in this case is best witnessed in the violent and harassing protests which have dogged the defendant and her family for many months now,” the motion says. Signed by Anthony’s lead lawyer, Jose Baez, the motion says moving the trial far enough away from local media will “not end the coverage,” which Baez said has produced thousands of articles and TV news reports, but will “have a chilling effect” on coverage. Peter Odom, a defense attorney appearing Monday on HLN’s Nancy Grace to provide analysis of the case, said, “All the defense has to show is that there’s been extensive media coverage. That’s a cinch.”
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“Secondly, that it will be impossible for them to find a fair jury pool,” he added, referring to the Orlando area. Baez cited a number of reasons in his request to the judge to move the case to south Florida, where he says it has been covered far less and there is a “large and diverse jury pool.” Local media in the Orlando area, he argued, have affected Anthony’s chances of getting a fair trial not only in Orange County but in much of Central Florida. If the judge rejects his request to move the trial to Miami, Baez said Broward County, about a 45-minute drive north of Miami, is a second choice.