August 13th, 2008
03:23 PM ET

The truth about Caylee

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/08/07/art.cayleeanthony.jpg]
Gabriel Falcon
AC360° writer

It’s the unspoken and the whispered, the off-the-record comments some investigators are telling reporters. It’s the gut feeling strangers and the concerned following the story from around the country feel in the pit of their stomachs. But it’s no so much what many think might have happened to the little girl. It’s the fear.

Her grandparents believe Caylee is most likely the victim of a kidnapping, possibly abducted over money Caylee’s mother, Casey, could have owed to someone. Earlier this week, AC360's Randi Kaye said the family expected good news to come, perhaps as early as this week. We hope they are right. And people are praying they are right.

But here’s the troubling part. When a child goes missing, and days give way to weeks, then months, without a clue or solid credible lead, the fear grows deeper that the child is in harm’s way, and may never return home again. The constantly changing stories from her mother Casey only add to the apprehension, and suspicion of a crime.

According to the lead detectives, Casey said she could help find her daughter, but only if they released her from jail. She is refusing to cooperate with authorities. A parent’s complete unwillingness to offer information she may have about her child’s whereabouts is baffling, and for many, beyond understanding. For the police, it’s a sign she may be keeping a very dark secret.

The truth about Caylee is that we may never know the truth. Why did she vanish? Why did her mother lie? And where is Caylee now?

In the end, they are questions that demand to be answered. Will they?

Filed under: Crime & Punishment • Gabe Falcon
soundoff (127 Responses)
  1. Frances

    I think too much time is spent on Casey. You can't believe a word that she says and she is simply not going to help. If she was truly worried about where Caylee is she would be shouting from the rooftops to find her. My guess would be that Casey does know where she is, dead or alive.

    And for Grandma, time to stop cottling Casey and worry about finding Caylee. The way Casey speaks to her mother, I wouldn't give her the time of day. It's time for Casey to grow up and pay for her own sins!!!

    August 13, 2008 at 7:22 pm |
  2. Rain

    I hope I'm wrong, but I can't believe this little girl is alive. Either there was an accident that her mother is covering up, or she's dead. Her grandparents are either in denial, desperately wanting to believe that their baby granddaughter will come home, or are frantically trying to cover their daughter's tracks in order not to lose them both.

    Toss the "mother" (and I use that term VERY loosely) into prison and leave her there to rot. No one with a child missing for weeks while she's out partying and NOT bothering to notify the police deserves the title of mother. And her "let me out and I'll tell you" ploy is nauseating.

    August 13, 2008 at 6:54 pm |
  3. Jan from Wood Dale IL

    Can Casey or the grandparents give any justifiable reasons that Casey needs to be released in order to tell where Caylee is? With all the national coverage of this missing child, Casey can't use the excuse of privacy now.

    August 13, 2008 at 6:49 pm |
  4. Kate

    Ronald...If you know something and you're sitting on it than in my opinion that makes you just as guiltiy. There is a little girls life at stake and you're sitting around waiting to be contacted. I'm sorry to say, thats not the way it works. I'm from the Clearwater area....why don't you tell me and I'LL call the cops.

    August 13, 2008 at 6:48 pm |
  5. CG

    To: Ronald F. Morgan August 13th, 2008 4:30 pm ET

    Mr. Morgan,

    If this isn't a joke and what you say is true, you need to contact the police. I've read articles of people who've known or seen "something" but have kept quiet because they "didn't want to get involved". Years later, they regret not stepping-up-to-the-plate because they now know it would have made a big difference in the outcome.

    You could always contact the police anonymously. But do it soon. There are a lot of people searching for Caylee and want to know she is ok.

    August 13, 2008 at 6:45 pm |
  6. kim

    My son Caleb was murdered by a drunk driver on August 22nd 2006. There are no words to describe the pain when you lose a child. I am still hoping and praying that Caylee will be okay. I pray that her own mother didn't hurt her, or doesn't know who did, and just won't say. I am so sorry for the family. My prayers go out to you all. Especially Caylee!

    August 13, 2008 at 6:43 pm |
  7. Niles - Lousiana

    Most likely a murder / coverup situation. Parents are trying to save their daughter's hyde, and most likely will be arrested as an accomplice to the crime.

    Could be accidental, but highly unlikely.

    August 13, 2008 at 6:35 pm |
  8. jack Allen

    The reality is the kid is dead because of a crazy mom. This should be a homicide investigation. The whole affair is symptomatic of the sensationalism our culture is rapidly devolving into and we keep feeding it. We interview her mom, psychics, babysitters, etc... on 360 and keep it going on till it loses commercial value. e.g. the cult in Texas and those crimes against children. They're back with the families and we've heard nothing about that for months.

    August 13, 2008 at 6:25 pm |
  9. Jamie in New Mexico

    I believe that Caylee is not coming home alive, if she comes home at all. God willing, the police will be able to find her on their own because it's obvious that her so-called "mother" is not going to help them in any way whatsoever.

    Whether Caylee's disappearance was due to an accident or it was intentional, her own mother (unless she cracks) will just continue to lie, lie and lie some more. This young woman is a pathetic excuse for a mother and a human being.

    Caylee's grandparents are so far in denial that it's not even funny. I can understand wanting to believe your child when they tell you something but when both grandparents described the smell in the trunk of the car as the smell of a 'dead body' and then later tried to say it was rotting pizza, it kind of makes you wonder if that's where Casey learned how to lie, from her own parents.

    My wish would be to have Caylee be found alive but it just doesn't look good. I can only hope that when everything in this case breaks and it will, that her family will be able to recover after losing a granddaughter and a daughter.

    August 13, 2008 at 6:21 pm |
  10. Lauri

    Personally I think Caseys and her mother are both nuts. The only sane one seems to be the grandfather who isn't getting wishy washy or swaying in his thought process like the grandmother is doing. If that were my daughter who wouldn't tell me what happened to my granddaughter, I'd beat her ass until the truth be told. God bless that little child.

    August 13, 2008 at 6:17 pm |
  11. tonja

    i have been praying for this little girl to be found safe and sound but i am afraid my mind is saying she is not safe but i hold the mother, the grandmother, and grandfather accountable they are upholding their daughers lies her lifestyle and still upholding HER

    August 13, 2008 at 6:17 pm |

    I have wondered about the grandfather. He is an ex officer and he surely must have some insight. It is my thought that he knows more than he is admitting. Could he possible have helped the mother of the child hide her body if the child is dead? Could he have a big envolement in the crime? He would know how to hide evidence for sure. He doesn't appear to have much emotion.

    August 13, 2008 at 6:14 pm |
  13. Charlee

    Yes, I saw the Ronald F. Morgan post. What the heck? He should have already called the police. What's up with that? Is he for real?

    August 13, 2008 at 6:12 pm |
  14. Kathy Welch

    I think little Caylee is dead (probably died accidentally due to her mother's neglect), and the mother has driven her somewhere (hence, borrowing the shovel from the neighbor & the smell in the car), to bury the body.

    Remember?? When all of this started, the grandmother had called 911 to report the little girl missing for several days, and, she told the 911 operator that "the car smells like a dead body". (She's a nurse & her husband is a former police officer so, if anyone should know what a dead body smells like, it's them.)

    They know this little girl is dead, & probably know what the circumstances were in her death, and now they're covering up for their daughter, in hopes of keeping her from going to prison for murder.

    August 13, 2008 at 6:07 pm |
  15. derrick

    i have been following this story from the begging and i have to say i am so confused. How long does it take to get DNA back from the trunk and if they have something more then charge her dont make up little nothing charges to put more pressure on her, this girl is in jail and her little girl is missing and the police think that charging her with more petty charges is going to make her all of a sudden sit up and go yeh i did it. I keep hearing from her parents they know who has her and they are being watched, that has to be the most stupid comment i have ever heard do they think they are able to do a better job watching and confronting any kidnappers better then the FBI or local police they need to throw the grandparents in jail for hindering if they know so much and will not share. Anyway good luck in finding this little girl it bring tears to my eyes every day i read about and trust me i hug my little girl every night before i go to bed and tell her a love her

    August 13, 2008 at 6:07 pm |
  16. Rowdyone

    My thoughts and prayers go out to Caylee. I don't
    believe any of the family. I wish I did. Why so many lies.
    Don't any of them care about Caylee

    August 13, 2008 at 6:03 pm |
  17. jack Allen

    The little girl is with the Lord and that;s the good thing...the tragedy is the mother and family are leading everyone on a wild goose chase. Americans hate reality and love lies rather than truth.

    August 13, 2008 at 5:59 pm |
  18. Rowdyone

    To: Ronald F. Morgan

    If you really have the information you say you do. Why are you not contacting anyone??? Unfortunately, I don't believe a word. Because
    anyone with a heart wouldn't just sit around doing nothing. I hope you
    feel good about yourself.
    If you don't have any information on Caylee, then I hope you would
    quit playing sick jokes. And maybe get some much needed help yourself.

    August 13, 2008 at 5:58 pm |
  19. Bernadette

    I believe that Casey may have accidentaly killed her little girl.
    She is too afraid to admit to anything. She herself is acting like a little child who did something wrong and is now trying to cover it up.
    Is it possible that what happened has so traumatized her that she
    has some sort of amnesia about it?
    In the pictures I have seen of her and Caylee, it looks like she was
    a happy, loving mom. It is really hard to understand how she can act so nonchalant about it. Any normal person would be falling apart and doing anything they could to find their baby.
    God Bless that family.

    August 13, 2008 at 5:57 pm |
  20. April

    I agree with Jack.

    Those dogs are trained to pick up the scent of a decaying human body, not a decaying pizza. If they scented on something in that car then someone dead was in that car and I fear it was indeed Caylee.

    The saddest part about this whole thing is that instead of telling the truth and letting Caylee be brought home to be in peace, Casey is still trying to cover her tracks. The grandparents are no help at all either. I am a mother, and there is no way I would be defending my child if she had behaved as Casey has.

    I really hope that I am wrong, but the facts of the case that have been given so far don't bode well for little Caylee.

    August 13, 2008 at 5:49 pm |
  21. Elizabeth

    This whole story saddens me so much. The police are doing a horrible job on this case. The mother is obviously guilty as all can get. I am a single mother of three and work full time. It is hard and stressfull, but at the end of the day, I cannot wait to get home to my kids. I don't let them out of my site and if anything ever happened to any one of them, I would go insaine. Something is wrong with this whole family. I think all three know where she is and the mother of Casey is trying to protect her daughter now. The story between all three of them has changed so much over the past month it is pathetic. Casey did something to her daughter and the police need to do whatever it takes to get it out of her. Sometimes I wish our country did what other countries do to get people to tell the truth, crime would go down a lot. I pray that this little girl is ok, and if she is dead, I pray her death was painless. The mother is a sick person, and I hope she gets the maximum penalty for whatever she has done to that poor baby.

    August 13, 2008 at 5:48 pm |
  22. Cat

    To: Ronald F. Morgan

    If you know where to find this woman who was claiming to be Caylee's mother than why don't you go to the police and tell them where she is? Instead of sitting there waiting for someone to "contact" you?

    August 13, 2008 at 5:38 pm |
  23. erikay

    Did anyone else just catch Ronald F. Morgan's post here??? He said he saw another woman with that little girl...

    Ronald F. Morgan August 13th, 2008 4:30 pm ET

    Is that a joke? Are you really waiting for someone to contact you? If you know something and this isn't a stupid joke, you should take it upon yourself to call the police.

    August 13, 2008 at 5:36 pm |
  24. deborah, OH

    I believe that the people on the 360 blog have showed more concern that Caylee's mom. Maybe I am wrong, but I don't understand her lying & concealing info.
    My prayers are for all the family. They may know things we don't know. But somebody messed up somewhere.

    August 13, 2008 at 5:32 pm |
  25. stacey

    I also feel that Casey killed Caylee or sold her. We know for a fact she has never tried to find her daughter, I think when she said that Caylee is close and is safe...in her demented mind she is saying Caylee is with God. Casey has not ever asked one single question, that we have heard, about the investigation on finding her little girl...she knows there is no reason to because she knows she is dead. Tell Casey she will be locked up until Caylee is found. Play her game, tell Casey that it is for her own safety. Tell her that we don't want her kidnapped also!
    See what she has to say then about her daughters where abouts!

    August 13, 2008 at 5:28 pm |
  26. Jess

    I am, for lack of better wording, disgusted by Caylee's mom. I'm a single mom with two kids, and my parents are raising them right now because I was not taking care of them the way they needed to be taken care of. I was feeding them, and bathing them, but I was not there emotionally. I knew that they would be better taken care of by my parents. This was done through me and my parents, not through the courts. I have them every weekend, and talk to them several times a day. I CANNOT imagine doing what Casey is doing. I just can't. Some one else wrote that the whole family is dysfunctional. And they're right. My mom and dad would be on my case 24 hours a day, seven days a week, until the kids were found. Not only that, but my dad would have all of his special forces friends on the case. Her parents are defending her actions, and blowing a lot of smoke.
    I pray for Caylee, and hope that somewhere, somehow she is still alive. I also pray for Casey, though. I don't think that she is really in a place to be a mom right now. In no way am I defending her, or validating what she is doing. But, I do know that she is a human being, and that what she is going through is tough. I hesitated writing that, because I don't want a lot of backlash for it. I just mean that Casey is human, and that as messed up in the head as she is, she needs prayer too.

    August 13, 2008 at 5:24 pm |
  27. Mary Harris

    Ok I have been watching this since day one. My "gut" feeling has always been that something happened to Caylee and I believe it was accidental. The Mother Casey flipped out (due to shock) and didn't know what to do, tried calling her Mom no answer. I have to also add that I believe that Cindy was the real one caring for little Caylee. Casey was not mature enough to deal with a child and then to take off just the two of them and have something happen to your child would only prove to Cindy that she was not capable of handling little Caylee.
    I hope they find her soon and that they check out all area's that Casey had told her brother she was, like the park the one she said she "wasn't there for fun"???Just my opinion.

    August 13, 2008 at 5:20 pm |
  28. Jack

    The truly horrifying aspect of this case is that cadaver dogs don't alert to the scent of 12-day old pizza. People generally have no idea of how sensitive a dog's nose actually is, and how easily dogs, even ordinary household mutts, distinguish among odors we can't even detect. If the properly trained cadaver dog alerted to mom's car, it's because he detected the unmistakable scent of human decomposition. Everyone hopes this precious child is alive, but with considerable sorrow and sincere regret, I'd bet on the dog's nose. Heaven knows I'd love to be proven wrong in this case.

    August 13, 2008 at 5:20 pm |
  29. cindy k

    What have they found out with the stolen credit cards? If she spent thousands of dollars with them, what did she buy, or did she give the money to the so-called kidnappers? And did they see if the stolen checks from her friend were cashed at the check cashing place where they found the car.

    August 13, 2008 at 5:11 pm |
  30. tonya in michigan

    we have watched this happen over and over again and the chances that this little girl is alive are slim to none, i hope the grandparents can find the strength to face the facts and stop playing into caseys lies it makes them look im sorry to say stupid to be playing along with her cat and mouse game i think caylee has been dead since day one. rest in peace baby girl.

    August 13, 2008 at 5:05 pm |
  31. JROD

    They Need to let casey out of jail on a lower bond. and wait and see what happens. If she said she can find her then by all means let her try. Casey knows alot more that she is letting out. Let her out of jail and keep tabs on her. She will either led the police strait to the little girl or try to run. If she runs, she's guilty!!!!

    August 13, 2008 at 5:02 pm |
  32. Katherine

    I have been watching this case every night with Nancy Grace. Why, doessn't somebody try to find out if, there was a video camera inside the cash store to see if, Caylee was even in the car when, the mother Casey left, her car there ? Was there a amber alert done when the mother Cindy called 911 to report the little girl missing ?

    August 13, 2008 at 4:58 pm |
  33. rosanna

    I'm no longer baffled by this "perplexing" story .....mostly angry with the ridiculous woman who calls herself Caylee's mother and the wild goose chase she has orchestrated for the authorities Anger also with the grandparents and their misplaced love and faith in their despicable daughter. The mother DOES know where her daughter is,..........and that's probably in a shallow grave somewhere. Come on Casey....... at least give your daughter a decent burial!!!!

    August 13, 2008 at 4:53 pm |
  34. Dori in AZ


    This must be one of the saddest stories you've covered! We're praying for justice for this little girl!

    August 13, 2008 at 4:51 pm |
  35. David Strange - PDX, OR

    It is very sad for the entire family that both this little girl is missing and so far the mother is unwilling to help solve this tradgedy. I have had my own theory since hearing some of the jail recordings and that is that she was involved in 'something' and that something led to the kidnapping of her daughter.

    The recording was a conversation with her brother in which she talked about going up (somewhere, can't remember) when he asked for business she said 'ya something like that, not for fun'...

    I just don't know what would drive a mother to sit in jail instead of helping to find her child.... sad, truly sad.

    My prayers are with the family, including Casey and surely Caylee.

    August 13, 2008 at 4:51 pm |
  36. deborah

    i think she killed her and doesnt want to talk because she knows she will slip up and say something to the police that will tell them the truth

    August 13, 2008 at 4:48 pm |
  37. Maritza

    Caylee is a precious child, Her mother is a game player, and a compulsive self indulgent liar, one lie to cover up another, unfortunatly most believe this cute little girl is no longer alive , what will be most telling is the results of the DNA found in the trunk of the car. I hope authorities are searching the nearby area especially wooded areas , and remote , she has to be nearby, her mother is not big and probably not capable of any extensive and physical disposal , that baby could be in a shallow grave , as many victims of violence aften are. I hope I'm wrong.

    August 13, 2008 at 4:44 pm |
  38. Leigh

    The psycho needs to confess and her parents need to cut her loose. She's living out some idiotic fantasy she's created in an attempt to delay the inevitable. A child is a beautiful gift, she'll never understand that. She's just another drain on society who never should have been allowed to reproduce. What a pathetic loser.

    August 13, 2008 at 4:32 pm |
  39. chell

    I just wish the mother of this child would just come out with it.. let her talk the F.B.I for god sakes and see what she has to say then. She will not talk to local cops of fear for some strange reason, maybe her cop friend might be involved and he is on the local police department so she fears word would get to him. I dont know she has lied so much and not to report that her child was missing is nut's! I pray that this little girl is safe and alive. I try not to think the worst but her mom casey does not seem to have her story straight. If she did something to her just tell the truth let this little girl rest in peace for god sakes if her mother did do something to her caylee went to heaven wondering why did my mommy do this to me is'nt that enough!! Again I pray for caylee to come home and not be hurt or anyone to have done anything bad to her.. Casey if you read this step up to the plate and be a woman and mother and do the right thing. If some reason you have been telling the truth that would surprise me.. if you have done something to your daughter bad, tell the truth and set caylee free it's not right to have her trapped in your lies!!!!!!!!!!!!

    August 13, 2008 at 4:32 pm |
  40. Ronald F. Morgan

    Caylee Anthony was introduced to myself on a construction job as being the daughter of another woman in march of this year. At the time I ask her how old she was and she said 2&1/2. I commented about the tattoo on her hand and her mother said she loves them. This job was in tampa and this woman lives in pinellas county, I think clearwater. A couple of days before she brought the little girl to the job site she showed me two pictures on her cell phone of caylee two of the same photoes seen on t.v. and said this is my daughter. If somebody will contact me I will be glad to tell them where to find this woman.

    MODERATOR: We have passed this comment to investigators. We'll let you know if there is any follow up.

    August 13, 2008 at 4:30 pm |
  41. Teri

    Where is Caylee's Father? Is Casey's boyfriend the child's father and if so why didn't he wonder where Caylee was the days Casey was coming and going the 16th thru the 18th?

    August 13, 2008 at 4:28 pm |
  42. Shellie

    I have lost hope they are going to find this child alive. What a horrible, frightening experience for that child. She looked so happy and trusting in those pictures. My gut says those she trusted unconditionally to care for her have betrayed her in the most unthinkable way. If that is true- I wish them the same pain and horror that baby endured.

    August 13, 2008 at 4:26 pm |
  43. Liza

    How come you need to take a test and get a license to drive a car, you have to be 18 to vote on who runs our country, you must be 21 to make the decision to purchase alcohol, but yet anyone, no matter age, intelligence, morals or lack thereof, can have a child. It really is disgusting, the lack of regard some so called human beings extend to others, even their own children. It's a privilege you heartless, thoughtless monster, not a right!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! And hopefully sooner rather than later, Casey will feel the sting of that same disregard for human life.

    August 13, 2008 at 4:24 pm |
  44. Christie Moore

    When it comes to crimes against children, why can't we use the "truth syrum??" This lady is a liar. and most likely a drug addict. If it was my child missing I would welcome help from any agency that would offer it. You hear stories about how some other child is missing but investigators are dragging their feet and not giving the incident the attention that it deserves, and then you've got idiots like this lady, getting national attention for her lost child, and she is too ignorant to open her mouth and tell the authorities EVERYTHING she knows. She is denying her family visits b/c she is a liar that has run out of excuses. You can only burn the candle from both ends for so long, before you run out of wick. I am just baffled @ her justifications!!! They are obviously not putting enough pressure on her. Sad, sad, sad.

    August 13, 2008 at 4:20 pm |
  45. alice

    Casey is a disgrace to herself and her family as for Caseys mother the lady is a nut case. Caylee is one of two things: dead or sold into the sex trade by her mother. Nail her she deserves whatever she gets.

    August 13, 2008 at 4:10 pm |
  46. Heather

    It has been clear to me for a long time that the entire family is beyond disfuctional.The grandmother says without any hesitation that her daughter is a pathological lier.They even defend her party lifestyle saying she did what any normal girl her age does.The thing is,she is not a normal girl.She is a mother.Her child comes first before her.There is no doubt to me that the grandparents haven't done the proper job of parenting her.If they had she would know that motherhood is a fulltime and lifetime job.She doesn't even know what selflessness is.I can't think of a single mother who would not want to tell the police the truth even if a gun was held to their head.Most parents always say my life is my child.I guess she didn't get the memo that all mothers get that your child's welfare comes before her's.It's her job as her mother to tell the police the truth.I guess she doesn't know or doesn't care.Well the country cares. I think the police need to make clear that they have no interest in making any deals period.That they are prepared to have her stay in jail for as long as it takes.If she has nothing to hide she would have no problem talking to the police even if it's recorded it wouldn't be released to the public because it would jeapardy.So her concern is rediculious.Police tape interviews every day and no one knows.They are kept as evidence and usually not used until trial.It's just another way to avoid the truth. I feel terrible for the police who are just trying to do their job.There is no question her daughter is dead.She knows it.But thinks she can lie her way through anything .I think she will start to go crazy staying in jail and might crack.Who know's. I wonder what an FBI profiler would have to say.I think about what fools she is making of everyone.Kind of like Scott Peterson,kind of.I think the police and the FBI are doing the right thing.Using forensic science.What a pretty little girl she deserved better.

    August 13, 2008 at 4:09 pm |
  47. AJ

    Casey's web of lies and refusal to provide information unless released from custody is beyond infuriating. Couple her behaviour that with her parents denial and perpetuating their daughter's lies and outlandish stories is beyond comprehension. This case can only be described as a tragedy but I fear the greatest tragedy is yet to be revealed....that will come when Caylee's remains are found. I trust and pray that Caylee is at peace. May those that failed her, intentionally or accidentally, in life and in death, be held accountable to the strictest degrees possible under law!

    August 13, 2008 at 4:04 pm |
  48. elizabeth

    she either sold her, or she killed her, but either way, if they let her out "to help search for her" she will leave the country and we will never know the absolute truth. Perhaps OJ, who vowed to search for Nicole's killer, could give Casey pointers on where to search for Caylee. "try the club house! there's a pretty sweet band playing there on Saturday nights!"

    August 13, 2008 at 4:00 pm |
  49. Lilibeth

    I don’t know what to make of this case anymore. Everything about it is bizarre. The more I think about it, the more heartbreaking it is for me. I know it’s been several weeks now, but I don’t want to speculate on where Caylee might be. I’m still hoping that she’ll be found soon, safe and sound.

    Edmonds, Washington

    August 13, 2008 at 3:53 pm |
  50. Cindy

    Sorry to say it but I think that Caylee is dead just like a lot of other people. If she were alive and anywhere in th U.S. someone would have seen her and called the police. The fact that there haven't been any sightings of her just adds to that fact.

    Casey has lied so much that anything she says now you have to take with a grain of salt. So now she's saying someone has her daughter that she owes money to. Yeah...I don't buy that.

    I hope for the grandparents sake that the truth comes out soon.


    August 13, 2008 at 3:45 pm |
1 2 3