How Casey Anthony escaped to St. George Island

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How Casey Anthony escaped to St. George Island

Post by mom_in_il on Wed Jul 25, 2012 7:07 pm

How Casey Anthony escaped to St. George Island

July 25, 2012 2:30 PM

A newly released tell-all book by Casey Anthony’s attorney, Jose Baez, confirms the rumor that ricocheted through Franklin County one year ago.

Yes, the young Florida woman acquitted July 5, 2011 of murdering her 3-year-old daughter Caylee, after a widely publicized trial that riveted the nation, did indeed use the St. George Island airport to help her escape media pursuit following her release on July 17, 2011 from an Orange County jail.

In his just-published book "Presumed Guilty, Casey Anthony: The Inside Story," (BenBella Books) attorney Jose Baez details how he came up with a plan to have his friend, California lawyer Todd Macaluso, fly Anthony out of the Orlando Executive Airport.

“There were too many crazies who were convinced she had killed Caylee while she danced the night away, and I feared for her safety,” wrote Baez, who authored the book along with Peter Golenbock.

Knowing they would have to duck the media and the surveillance of a half-dozen helicopters, Baez’s legal team formulated a strategy to drive to a multilevel garage, “where the helicopters couldn’t see us, driving a bunch of cars in the garage, and making them guess which car Casey was in as all the cars left the building.”

Anthony was escorted by a SWAT team and her entourage granted a two-minute head start on closed streets as they left shortly after midnight to a parking garage across the street, where a half-dozen cars then exited at the same time.

Despite the surveillance that ensued, the caravan managed to arrive at the Orlando airport and then waited for three hours until the media furor died down and they could sneak into the hangar where Macaluso’s plane awaited them.

Baez then writes of how he told the pilot to head for St. George Island, “on the Florida panhandle near Panama City and not far from Apalachicola, the oyster capital of the world.

“I had been there for a weekend when I was a student at Florida State University. You can rent a house on the beach and have complete privacy. Our entire team was going to spend the weekend relaxing and talking about where Casey was going to go.

“We took off, and even knowing that one of the helicopters saw us, they had no way of knowing whether Casey was inside. It didn’t take an hour before we were flying above St. George’s Island,” Baez wrote.

Dorothy Clay Sims was to meet the plan at the island’s airport, which Baez said was less than a mile from the house we rented.

The pilot asked Macaluso to be sure to have Sims flash her lights so they could find the airport.

“’What do you mean, flash her lights?’ I wanted to know,” wrote Baez.

Macaluso told the lawyer the airport was closed, and wouldn’t have runway lights on. Baez said he was fearful in the darkness, relying only on a car’s flashing lights.

“I said to myself, Oh my God. After all this, I’m going to die in a plane crash with Casey Anthony. This is a blogger’s dream come true,” he wrote.

Baez said the plane made a perfect landing, and dropped off the passengers as it continued towards the west coast.

Baez said he returned to the rental house, and climbed onto the roof to watch the water at 5 a.m., just as the sun was rising on the horizon.

“I could hear someone else climbing to the roof,” wrote Baez. “It was Casey.”

He then recounts their conversation:

“Jose, what am I going to do,” she said.

“I don’t know, Casey, but we’re going to figure it out together.”

“Thank you. I will never forget all you did for me.”

She looked at the ocean, which was turning from black to blue and she said, “It’s the most beautiful thing I’ve ever seen, and I’m going to sit here and watch the sun come up.”

And she did. She took photos of her first sunrise of freedom.

I went to bed.”

The next day, Baez writes that the group was walking around the house cooking and talking, when the phone rang.

He said the caller asked “Is Jose Baez there?”

Baez writes that “the person claimed to be from the media. But the house had been rented in someone else’s name. Who knew I was there?”

Apalachicola staff writer Lois Swoboda was likely the caller, as she was following up on a tip that morning.

“Apparently earlier in the day I had stood on the veranda to make a phone call and someone had recognized me and called someone,” theorized Baez, in his book. “I knew I had to get Casey out of there immediately.”

Baez writes that he then had one of his investigators drive Anthony to New York.

http://www.apalachtimes.com/news/anthony-10417-casey-george.html
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mom_in_il
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