Citing concerns that any answer that she gives might be used against her in her criminal case, Casey Anthony, through her civil lawyer, Jonathan Kasen, has decided to invoke her Fifth Amendment right to not answer any of the questions posed in the written questionnaire provided her by the lawyers of Zenaida Fernandez-Gonzalez, who is suing Casey Anthony for defamation. According to the Orlando Sentinel, Gonzalez lawyers had originally wanted to depose Anthony on videotape, but that idea was blocked by Casey Anthony’s defense team.
Circuit Judge Jose R. Rodriguez, who will be adjudicating the civil case, thought of the paper questionnaire as a compromise.
Kasen said Tuesday, February 3, that his client would take the Fifth Amendment on each question of the questionnaire. The questions include whether or not Casey Anthony knows who killed her daughter and whether or not she was involved in the death of Caylee Anthony. One question asks if Casey Anthony admits that the story she told police about leaving Caylee Anthony with Zenaida Fernandez-Gonzalez was untrue.
Gonzalez sued Casey Anthony for defamation in September. She said her life had been turned upside down by the investigation and that Casey Anthony had wrongfully accused her, She admitted to filling out an application at the apartments where Casey Anthony said she dropped off Caylee and saw her for the last time. Gonzalez told ABC’s “Good Monring America,” “I just went to look at an apartment and filled out an information card.” She said she believed that the people at the complex probably gave Casey Anthony the information when she said she was looking for her child.
Gonzalez maintains and has always maintained that she does not and did not know Caylee or Casey Anthony. A police investigation found that Zenaida Fernandez-Gonzalez was not involved in the missing child’s case. Casey Anthony’s defense team pointed out that there were several hundred Zenaida Gonzalez’ in Florida alone and plan on using the information and the fact that the Orange County Sheriff’s Office did not even interview all of the Zenaida Gonzalez’ in the Orlando area to ascertain whether or not their client had been telling the truth. Anthony’s lawyers maintain that their client is being truthful and that poor police work and investigating techniques are a couple of the many reasons why the sheriff’s office centered their investigation on Casey Anthony and charged her with murder instead of continuing the search for Caylee Anthony’s abductors.
Jose Baez, Casey Anthony’s lawyer, filed a counter-lawsuit against Zenaida Fernandez-Gonzalez in November, according to My Fox Orlando, claiming that Gonzalez case was “frivolous” and a publicity stunt orchestrated by her lawyer.
With every move she makes, every word said, or expression she exhibits scrutinized by thousands, saying nothing at all, even in writing, might be Casey Anthony’s best defense. Thus far, answering questions and making statements has done nothing but get her into even more legal trouble. But the damage done to her case(s) may be too much to overcome already.