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article imageOp-Ed: Don’t bring Casey Anthony to book

By Alexander Baron     Jul 6, 2011 in Crime
Orlando - The acquittal of Casey Anthony for the murder of her daughter Caylee has led to speculation that she will soon be able to cash in on her notoriety, but that will only happen if the American public permits it.
Now that “Tot Mom” has been cleared of all major charges, and could walk free as soon as tomorrow, there is talk of her cashing in on her notoriety. The London Daily Mail claims she has been deluged with book and film offers, and even “porn deals”.
This is the same Daily Mail that blames public sector workers rather than bankers for the catastrophe we are now facing, so we should perhaps take its claims with a pinch of salt. It is more likely that Casey Anthony – who is already a hate figure - will become a target for public vitriol or even for vigilantes. This is the last thing we should want because too many innocent people have already suffered on her account, not least her own parents. It may be though that she has to be given a new identity for her own protection. In Britain, this happened to Maxine Carr, whose only crime was, foolishly, to give her baby-faced boyfriend Ian Huntley an alibi for the Soham Murders.
In 1978, Larry Singleton raped fifteen year old Mary Vincent, hacked off her arms and left her for dead. Incredibly, she survived, and even more incredibly he was sentenced to only fourteen years’ imprisonment and served a mere eight before being paroled. When his identity leaked out, the authorities had to move him into isolation. In 1997, he murdered a prostitute; although sentenced to death, he died of cancer while awaiting execution.
It may be a little uncharitable to compare Casey Anthony with a monster like Singleton, but only a little. Regardless of the public reaction to Anthony’s acquittal, there is a lesson that can be learned from both OJ Simpson – the person with whom she has been most often likened – and from a recent development in the UK.
In 2006, the semi-literate Simpson produced a ghost-written book called If I Did It...Within weeks, the publishers, HarperCollins, realised they’d made a colossal mistake, and it was withdrawn.
In Britain today, the News Of The World newspaper and its company News International are under enormous pressure after revelations that the mobile phone of a murder victim was hacked and messages deleted. The Ford motor company has withdrawn its advertising from the paper, and others are set to follow.
Rightly or wrongly, Casey Anthony has been acquitted and will soon be a free woman, but the great American public should not allow her to profit from her daughter’s death.
This opinion article was written by an independent writer. The opinions and views expressed herein are those of the author and are not necessarily intended to reflect those of
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