Questions Continue To Dog Case Against Casey Anthony - Page 3
According to Dr. Spitz, after having been called by Baez’ law firm, he requested that he be in attendance at the prosecution’s autopsy, performed by Dr. Garavaglia, stating that this was customary in his profession. Spitz stated that his requests were denied; however, when the official autopsy was terminated, he was then given access to the remains.
When asked if there had been any remarkable observations, Dr. Spitz noted that there had been “no interior examination of the skull, which should have been done,” to determine the resting state of the body when it decomposed.
When a sample skull was taken out for demonstrative purposes, Casey Anthony seemed relatively unfazed, but her father George Anthony left the courtroom. When graphic photos of his skeletal autopsy were shown, however, Casey began to look troubled, moving the monitor so she couldn’t see them. As Spitz began his description of having sawed Caylee Anthony’s skull open and examined the debris left of her decayed brain, Casey covered her face and looked away, crying.
Based on deposition of the decayed brain, according to Dr. Spitz, Caylee’s body decayed in a position with her head down on its left side. No tape was noted on the skull when Spitz received it.
When asked to determine the cause of death, Spitz stated that he could not rule out accidental death, an opinion as important as was his response regarding the “manner” of death. To both of these, Dr. Spitz contradicted Dr. Jan Garavaglia, who previously stated that she believed Caylee Anthony had been murdered.
In Dr. Spitz’s opinion, the manner of death was inconclusive, and accidental death could not be ruled out, based on the evidence he saw.
At this point, there was an aggressive cross-examination by prosecution attorney Jeff Ashton of the witness, with Spitz at one point calling Dr. Garavaglia’s autopsy “shoddy” in response to a line of almost angry questioning. Spitz later apologized for the comment, but did say he felt provoked by Ashton, and held that he disagreed with the prosecution’s theories.
When handed a book on forensic examination work, Spitz was asked by Ashton where it said “open the head.” Spitz replied that this was not the use for the book, stating “sir, this is not a book on protocol.”
A particularly troublesome point brought up by Spitz was what he considered improper handling of the skeleton and tangled “hair mass” taken from the scene, and photographed in the medical examiner’s office as evidence. This was in reply to attorney Ashton questioning Spitz’s statement that Caylee’s body had been moved after decomposing.Continued on the next page