Filled with explosive new information, this is the definitive inside story of the case that captivated the nation and the verdict that no one saw coming....
It was the trial that stunned America, the verdict that shocked us all. On July 5, 2011, nearly three years after her initial arrest, Casey Anthony walked away, virtually scot-free, from one of the most sensational murder trials of all time. She'd been accused of killing her daughter, Caylee, but the trial only left behind more questions: Was she actually innocent? What really happened to Caylee? Was this what justice really looked like?
In Imperfect Justice, prosecutor Jeff Ashton, one of the principal players in the case's drama, sheds light on those questions and much more, telling the behind-the-scenes story of the investigation, the trial, and the now-infamous verdict. Providing an inside account of the case, Ashton, a career prosecutor for the state of Florida, goes where the press and pundits have only speculated, detailing what really happened during the investigation, showing how the prosecution built their case, and explaining how a woman so shrouded in suspicion was proclaimed innocent.
Moving beyond the simple explanations, Ashton offers an in-depth look at the complex figure of Casey Anthony, a woman whose lies he spent three years trying to understand. And yet this focus on Casey came with its own risks; here he details how this widespread fixation on Casey - both in the media and in the trial - may have undermined the case itself. As everyone got caught up in the quest to understand the supposed villain, somehow the victim, Caylee, was all but forgotten - not just to the public, but more important, to the jury.
Complete with never-before-revealed information about the case and the accused, Ashton examines what the prosecution got right, what they got wrong, and why he remains completely convinced of Casey Anthony's guilt.
©2011 Jeff Ashton (P)2011 HarperCollins Publishers
If you didn't live on earth and follow the Casey Anthony matter, this book is for you. If you watched Nancy Grace every night from the day Caylee went missing and all the In Session and HLN courtroom reports and the actual trial, this book is you. Mr. Aston follows the exact timeline from the first day he was assigned the trial. He explains the prosecutions rationale and actions in great detail. His comment on the motivations of the people involved and his perceptions of their actions adds insights that even the most obsessive watcher will be intrigued with. He covers each element of the trial, the attorneys??? actions, body language, strategies, the judge???s actions, etc. It???s all there for you to see and learn what was going on. Those who say there is nothing new in Mr. Ashton???s book are as wrong as Casey is not guilty. His treatment of the infamous Jose Baez is not to be missed. If you are a lay person like me in jurisprudence, your eyes will be opened by the behavior of this smarmy lawyer. Nevertheless, his book is very balanced and he points out his biases clearly ??? especially about ???Baez???. If you thought the jury was lazy, mindless and suffering from get homeitus, this in my opinion confirms it .
Mr. Ashton reads his own book and if he is looking for a new career he has found it. Watch out Simon Vance. While his written word provides us a great look at Mr. Ashton??? personality, his spoken words only made me wish I knew him personally. He is easy to listen to. I felt like we were sitting in a restaurant over lunch discussing the whole Casey Anthony deal. He didn???t leave Caylee out of the book either like the jury left her out of the trial and their minds.
Use your credit and listen to this book. If nothing more it will console you somewhat over this miscarriage of justice.
I'm not sure why I got this book in the first place. Like much of the rest of the world, I watched this train-wreck of a true-crime story as it unfolded (derailed?) on live TV, and I was tired of the whole sordid mess by the time the verdict came in. Then I saw this book on Audible, and the true-crime fan in me must have overcome the tired-of-Casey-Anthony-watcher, because I bought it and dropped it into my playlist, where it sat ignored for weeks. When I finally got around to trying it out, I quickly found myself intrigued despite myself, and before I knew it I was sucked right back into it and enjoying every minute of the story. Unlike the case itself, the book flew by in no time.
Although there were some fascinating insights throughout, I can't say that there was a whole lot of new information, particularly if you followed the story in real time. But the author (who also happens to be the prosecutor who lost the trial) does such a good job telling the story and fleshing out the characters and their motivations, I found myself fascinated even by the re-telling of facts I already knew and people I was tired of hearing about. Plus, he's very good at reading his own writing, which isn't surprising given that he's a trial attorney who has to exactly that day in and day out in court.
I was also impressed with how little whining Ashton did about the outcome or unfairness of the trial, which isn't always the case when losing attorneys write their account of a big trial. You sort of expect "How It Wasn't My Fault That a Murderer Went Free," but while this book doesn't shy away from exposing the author's dislike for opposing counsel, it didn't wallow in constant finger-pointing or blame-shifting, which I very much appreciated.
In closing, your honor, I went into both the real-life case and the reading of this book skeptical and unconvinced. Jeff Ashton convinced me at the trial, and many months later he convinced me to keep reading his book even though I wasn't sure I wanted to. If only he had convinced that jury as effectively as he did me, a certain narcissistic baby-killer would be living the "good life" in jail right now where she belongs.
Having worked in courtrooms for 20 years, I love true & fictional crime. In love with Cross & Davenport. Fictional lawyer stories rule.
Interesting, thought provoking, intelligent. I usually cringe when books are narrated by the author, but in this case Ashton's is the only voice competent to tell the story. Very well done, indeed.
Watched the entire trial which left me angry and frustrated. Jeff Ashton's book answered a lot of questions about the murder of this child by her mother, her defense attorneys, her family and lastly the jury and the verdict. Most of which was confirmation of my very own thoughts and opinions. Thank you Jeff Ashton. And I hope we hear much more from you in the future.
Jeff DOES in fact bring out never-before revealed info in this well-written and thoughtful book. He narrates it himself, and I felt strongly that this added a LOT to the effectiveness of the entire manuscript. He is witty, introspective, puts a balanced view to this whole complex case; and, I think, gives credit where it is due to major players in the case, and criticisms, well-deserved in my opinion, to those who did not play fair. It is a VERY entertaining read. I highly recommend this book!!
I think Jeff did an
It gives some good background info and there were a few things I didn't know. If you watched the entire case unfold on t.v. you might get a bit bored at times, but keep going.
Yes, yes, yes! Great listening!
What an awesome insight into the behind the scenes of what really happened.
The heart wrenching facts of how a mother who murdered her poor baby girl got away with it and how the family allowed her to control them and their destiny and now to walk away from them, leaving them in unbearable pain with memories that can't be erased. How sad especially for George who seems to be the victim in all of this. A loving father and husband who wanted nothing more than to have a happy family. His greatest joy was when his precious Caylee was born. It's so sad that he tried to commit suicide, overwhelmed with pain. I loved hearing it straight from Jeff Ashton who poured his heart and soul into justice for Caylee and lost. Thank you so much for writing this book of your memoirs.
I think it's a perfect title.
Thank you Jeff for pouring your heart into this book and giving us a small window into the lives of this very dysfunctional family and a very evil child that they raised. God bless little Caylee's soul and may her mother be forever haunted by her memory.
There was very little information that was new to me in the book, but I really followed the case closely while it was happening. It was news to me that Casey blamed everything on George and that her Attorney's tried to get her to accept a plea.
For anyone who is unfamiliar with the case this is a very succinct and detailed retelling of the entire case. It is well told by Jeff Ashton as narrator. I appreciate his candor and his humor in his retelling of the story.
My disappointment in our justice system is in the fact that Jose Baez can get up there and brazenly lie about the facts of the case, then not support his lies AT ALL with any testimony what so ever. But his so doing caused enough confusion for the jury that they felt they could not make a decision. I thought a trial was an effort to find the truth, not an effort to confuse with lies and deceit presented as facts.
Jeff Ashton has a very big grudge against the Jury in this case. He calls them stupid and unimaginative. He has a very biased out look of the trial. If I did not know any better I would think he is just mad about the defense team ruining his retirement case. I loved every minute of it. Even from Jeff's bias recollection, you can see where the jury could go against the prosecution. With that being said, The other evidence is still so overwhelming that I cannot understand how they did not convict. The really good part of the book is Jeff gives a better guide to one of the people to blame. Casey's mother did everything she could to protect her daughter. The things she did disgusts me more than what Casey did. As you can see the book brings back the feelings of anger. Good book that I recomend to everyone that had interest in the trial.
I am going to try to stick to the book itself and not discuss the crime, which of course, was horrific. I found this to be a memoir - he discusses how he and the other prosecutors went about proving their case to the jury. He emphasizes Casey's lying and her lawyer's behavior. He discusses the investigation and how it proceeded. He discusses the forensics in detail - he was the prosecutor who presented the forensic issues and cross-examined the defense's witnesses. If you find forensics interesting, you will find this fascinating, especially how this information can be presented to a jury legally. He emphasizes the differences in Florida law and how this influenced all aspects of the trial Personally, I think he was a very hard on the young man who found the body (what a horrible experience for him; he should be a hero for finding the child's body despite being told more than once that he was wrong) and on the jury who he seemed to feel was not very intelligent, sympathetic or hard working despite giving up weeks of their lives, showing up every day, not dropping out of the trial.
He does not discuss the controversy that arose out of the computer searches for "Chloform" which has been in the news lately - the prosecution put forth that their were many searches for this term - now the expert who was involved in the searches has a different opionin of the evidence. That fact that the information given the jury may not have been correct doesn't change the fact that she is quilty; I was just wondering his thoughts on the discrepancies especially since it is said that it might have lead to a mistrial if she had been convicted.
I would have liked to have understood more about the general concept of cases in the public media and prosecuting big trials. I would have liked more information on jury thinking while sequestered and their treatment during this time - how can we help sequestered juries process the information they are presented? What can we learn from the OJ Simpson trial and this trial about juries who are sequestered?
He also very much disliked the defense legal team without really answering the question - why did they win? How can we change our laws to require defense attornies prove their version of the situation? With this success, will this become more of a technique to defend clients using elaborate scenarios without any proof? How can the judge help the jury understand the law and separate proven information from fiction?
He states that he has prosecuted other murder trials and I would be interested if he was to write more books about those trials or other ones that are similar.
One of the questions that Audible asks is what books are similar. Books I have found similar are: "True Story" by Michael Finkel really sticks in my mind (a father who killed his family and fled to Mexico), "Zodiac" by Robert Graysmith, "Green River, Running Red" by Ann Rule, Joe McGinnis's "Never Enough" (Nancy Kissel who killed her husband in Hong Kong) and the classic "Fatal Vision"I (Dr. Jeffrey McDonald), and "Columbine" by Dave Cullen. I would recommend all these books to listeners who like true crime - all are on Audible.
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