Valley reaction to Casey Anthony verdict

FRESNO, Calif.

Once the verdict came down "not guilty" for Casey Anthony -- shockwaves were sent throughout the country. Many legal experts predicted Casey would have been convicted of first degree murder or at the very least manslaughter. ABC30 legal analyst Tony Capozzi says the prosecution just didn't present enough evidence to justify the charges.

"They didn't have a cause of death. They didn't have someone committing that crime. At least an eye witness. They didn't have any forensic evidence tying in fingerprints. Tying in blood samples. Nothing that could tie this defendant in to that body." said Capozzi.

The streets outside of the Florida courtroom erupted in anger Tuesday as many became outraged after learning the news. Three thousand miles away it seems many Californians were just as fired up.

In our Exclusive Action news poll conducted by Survey USA, 72% of those polled were surprised by the verdict. While 28% expected the non-guilty outcome.

We also asked "Based on what you know, did Casey Anthony kill her daughter?" A staggering 75% said yes. Only 10% said no.

"I think most Americans thought she was guilty." said Dr. Eric Hickey.

Dr. Eric Hickey is a Criminology professor at Alliant University in East Central Fresno. He says Americans can quickly change their minds about a case and a person.

"It's amazing how we are forgiving. And how we like a good show. First of all not everyone thinks that she's probably guilty. The majority do. But there's a curiosity factor." said Dr. Hickey.

This high profile case has people all the across the country turning to social media for justice. The "Leave the porch light on for Caylee Marie Anthony" page asks people to leave the light on at 9 P.M. More than a million people ended up joining the effort including Corrine Ornelas of Lindsay and Deanna Allen Presley of Clovis.

At last update there are now 1.5 million supporters of the Facebook page and organizers have extended the event.

Dr. Hickey believes that the majority of Americans who think Casey murdered Caylee will not look for another killer.

Copyright © 2021 KFSN-TV. All Rights Reserved.