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All The Bombshell Revelations From 'Casey Anthony: Where The Truth Lies'
In the Peacock docuseries "Casey Anthony: Where The Truth Lies," Casey Anthony discusses the investigation into her daughter Caylee's disappearance and the ensuing trial that saw her acquitted of murder.
Casey Anthony became a household name when her 2-year-old daughter, Caylee, went missing in the summer of 2008.
While the toddler was last seen alive on June 16, 2008, an entire month would pass before Cindy Anthony, Caylee’s grandmother, reported that the child had gone missing.
In her call to the police on July 17, Cindy said, “There is something wrong. I found my daughter's car today and it smells like there's been a dead body in the damn car,” according to audio played in “Casey Anthony: Where The Truth Lies.”
The same evening of the 911 call, Casey told investigators that Caylee had been kidnapped by her nanny, Zenaida "Zanny" Fernandez-Gonzalez. This, among other information relayed by Casey, was a lie.
Eventually, on Dec. 11, 2008, Caylee’s skeletal remains were found in a wooded area near her family’s home. There was duct tape found on the remains and she was stuffed inside a black trash bag.
By that point, Casey had already been indicted by a grand jury on Oct. 14, 2008. She had been charged with first-degree murder, aggravated child abuse, aggravated manslaughter of a child, and four counts of providing false information to police.
Following a highly publicized trial, which saw millions tune in across the country, Casey was acquitted in her daughter’s death, though she was found guilty on all four counts of providing false information to police. She was released from Orange County Jail 12 days later, on July 17, 2011.
Now, 11 years later, Casey is looking back on this period in her life in the three-part documentary “Casey Anthony: Where The Truth Lies,” streaming now on Peacock.
Why Casey Is Speaking Out Now
For years, Casey refrained from on-camera appearances, citing her need for privacy. But now, she says that she’s willing to speak out in the hopes that people understand her better.
“I just need someone to be willing to listen,” she said in the documentary. “I’ve spent the last 10 years making sure I knew who I was, that I started to cope with this loss and that I had something to say to make my daughter proud. But also, to honor her properly and this is a part of that.”
She added that she’s struggled to speak about Caylee’s death because she “still doesn’t know” what happened to the 2-year-old, who would’ve been 17 years old today.
Casey Details Alleged Childhood Abuse
Casey’s former friend, Annie Downing Goderwis, said in the documentary that it wasn’t uncharacteristic of Casey to stretch the truth.
“When I was friends with Casey, she lied about everything,” Annie said.
Casey said she can trace this habit back to her youth, when her father allegedly started sexually abusing her. When she’d fight back or try to scream, she alleged that he’d smother her by putting a pillow over her face.
“When I was 8 years old, my father started to come into my room at night,” Casey claimed. “I was physically hurt, scared because I was physically hurt and I can’t tell Mommy what happened because she’ll get mad at me — that’s what I was told.”
Casey alleged that her brother, Lee Anthony, also molested her from the ages of 12 to 15.
Lee Anthony, who has previously and consistently denied the allegations, has never been charged in connection to them. He didn’t reply to the producers’ requests for comment.
According to Casey, she was also hesitant to tell her mother because Cindy was concerned about appearances. As Casey claimed, “It was just assumed that whatever Mom and Dad said, son and daughter followed suit. So, I lied a lot more than I ever told the truth because the truth was too painful and it was too unreal to ever describe to someone.”
Casey’s allegations reflect statements made in connection with legal proceedings.
George Anthony has previously and repeatedly denied Casey’s allegations of sexual abuse and has not been charged in connection with them, nor was he ever investigated in connection to the case. He also did not return the producers’ requests for comment.
Who Was Caylee’s Father?
Casey also touched on questions about Caylee’s birth father, alleging that the toddler was the result of a rape.
Though Casey said she doesn’t know who the father was, she told people around her that it was her then-boyfriend, who asked for a paternity test following Caylee’s birth on Aug. 9, 2005. He subsequently learned that Caylee wasn’t his child.
She regrets lying about the father’s identity, saying, “It’s so f--ked up. It’s just years of feeling like I needed to live a certain life… because I didn’t want people to pity me. And I didn’t want my kid growing up thinking she was the product of something so bad and that I didn’t want her.”
What Casey Remembers Of The Day Caylee Went Missing
In the documentary, Casey said that she lied to the police because she was allegedly instructed to do so by her father.
Casey claimed she was taking a nap with Caylee in her bedroom on the afternoon of June 16, 2008, when her father woke her up and asked where Caylee, now missing from the room, was. She said they began searching for Caylee, looking in the backyard where there was an above-ground pool.
“By the time I came back around from the left side of the house, I came back around to the porch, he was standing there with her,” Casey said. “I can see him standing there with her, handing her to me and telling me that it’s my fault ... But he didn’t rush to call 911. He didn’t try to resuscitate her.”
Casey alleged that after this, George took Caylee’s body and told her that everything would be “OK” before walking away.
“During the 31 days, I genuinely believed Caylee was still alive,” she said. “My father kept telling me she was OK. I just had to keep following his instructions.”
She said that she “doesn’t know” what happened to Caylee, though she alleged she believes George possibly molested Caylee and smothered her with a pillow, accidentally resulting in the 2-year-old's death.
George declined the producers’ request for an interview.
Where Casey Is Now
Patrick McKenna, the lead private investigator on her defense team, confirmed in the documentary that he invited Casey to live with him following her trial. He said that she was unable to find employment elsewhere, at which point he offered her a job as an assistant.
“He’s the closest thing to a real dad that I’ve ever had,” Casey said.
McKenna noted that Casey has spent almost all holidays with his family, adding that he trusted her with his grandchildren.
“She became like a daughter,” he shared.
Since the acquittal, Casey has also undergone therapy, in which she worked through the trauma of the public trial, as well as the abuse she allegedly endured as a child.
Now, Casey hopes to move forward with her life, sharing that she hopes to one day scatter Caylee’s ashes — which Casey’s mother reportedly has possession of — at all the places she wanted the toddler to see in her lifetime.
“I wanted her to travel, do all the things I wanted to do,” Casey said. “Not have her trapped in a box on a shelf.”
All three episodes of “Casey Anthony: Where The Truth Lies” are streaming now on Peacock.