Judge throws out 2 Casey Anthony lying convictions in appeal court
2 other lying to law enforcement convictions upheld
A judge in the Fifth District Court of Appeal upheld two of Casey Anthony's lying to law enforcement convictions and tossed out two others, according to a ruling on Friday.
DOCUMENT: Appellate court decision
Anthony, charged with first-degree murder in the death of her daughter Caylee, was acquitted in July 2011. She was convicted of four charges of lying to law enforcement, which she was appealing in the Fifth District Court of Appeal in Daytona Beach.
The charges stemmed from statements Anthony made to Orange County Sheriff's Office Detective Yuri Melich on July 16, 2008, during the investigation into Caylee Anthony's disappearance.
Prosecutors had originally charged Anthony with telling four separate lies to police, including that she left her daughter with a babysitter and that she had received a phone call from her missing daughter.
The appeals court ruled that those weren't four separate lies as prosecutors believed, but they were not one single continuous lie either, as the defense argued.
The first time Anthony lied was when she was being interviewed by detectives at her parents' home the day her daughter was reported missing. The second time occurred the next day, when she repeated the same lies to detectives at Universal Studios, where Anthony lied about working.
The appeals court ruling reads,"We determine that each interview in which false information was given constituted a separate criminal episode."
The ruling continued, stating, "We cannot conclude that the Legislature intended to authorize separate punishment for each false statement made during a single interview."
So instead of being convicted of four misdemeanor counts of lying to police, Anthony will be charged with two counts. Anthony already served time in jail for those misdemeanor convictions while awaiting her murder trial.
But if Anthony decides to appeal her remaining convictions to the Florida Supreme Court, which may not hear the case, there's a chance Anthony could be forced to testify in the civil case filed by Zenaida Gonzalez.
Gonzalez is suing Anthony on defamation charges after she says Anthony used her name as the fictitious nanny's name in the investigation. The lawsuit was postponed to an undetermined date in 2013.
Legal analyst Luis Calderon believes Judge Belvin Perry will be able to correct the paperwork in his chambers, without having to hold a hearing in the open court.
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