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Forensic Report: Evidence Of Decomposition, Chloroform In Casey's Car


POSTED: 8:21 am EDT October 24, 2008
UPDATED: 12:17 pm EDT October 24, 2008

FORENSIC REPORT: Read Full Document Released By Investigators (PDF)
VIDEO REPORT: FBI Tests Conclude Evidence Of Decomposition In Car

ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. Scientists who conducted forensic tests in the Casey Anthony investigation concluded that human decomposition and evidence of chloroform were present in the trunk of Casey's car, according to the report released Friday.

The report details findings from FBI tests on items found inside Casey's car, including DNA results on hair samples and forensic testing of debris and clothing (read details).

Among the results is confirmation that a hair sample found in the vehicle "exhibits characteristics of apparent decomposition." The report also says that specific hair is "microscopically similar" to hair investigators took from Caylee's hairbrush, but couldn't confirm it was conclusively Caylee's.

DNA testing done on that piece of hair and compared with a sample provided by Casey confirmed that neither Casey nor Caylee can be "excluded as the source of the hair," because the "mtDNA sequences ... are the same."

Tests also confirmed "residues of chloroform" within a spare tire cover found inside the trunk of Casey's car. "Residues consistent with chloroform" were also found within the left and right side trunk liner. The report says no other chemicals were detected within those items.

Odor tests that were conducted on the carpet inside Casey's car concluded that 80 percent of the chemicals identified were "consistent with decompositional events." The results of the FBI's Laser-Induced Breakdown Spectroscopy (LIBS) on the same carpet concluded that "while these are still preliminary results ... both odor analysis and LIBS results appear to be quite consistent with a decompositional event having occurred in the trunk of the vehicle."

The report also clarifies that the tests conducted appear to point to human decomposition and not animal. Meanwhile, a hair fragment the FBI found on the shovel Casey borrowed from her neighbor days after investigators believe Caylee was murdered, but that hair did not match Caylee or Casey.

The report's final conclusion is that the results of the tests and comparisons indicate "that a portion of the total odor signature identified in the Florida vehicle trunk is consistent with a decompositional event that could be of human origin."

The details of the report released Friday are probably part of what the grand jury heard last week before indicting Casey, but it's not all of the evidence. The thousands of tips that were called in on the case are expected to be released soon and Eyewitness News has learned the vast majority of them are from psychics.


One of the experiments the FBI did to determine the air composition of the trunk was the same test conducted by Eyewitness News. FBI investigators left a pizza in its box and let it decompose.

Just the experiment by Eyewitness News showed, no maggots were found and the FBI says the pizza did not break down into compounds they found in the trunk, which are consistent with human decomposition.

Early on, Cindy Anthony claimed a rotting, maggot-infested pizza caused the foul odor in the trunk. (more here)


Meanwhile, Casey Anthony's defense team is looking for ways to eliminate the strongest evidence against her in the murder of her daughter Caylee. That includes evidence of Caylee's body and chloroform found in Casey's car trunk.

The defense may try to prove that so many people had access to the car during the time it was parked at the Amscot on SR-50 and Goldenrod Road that it's impossible to say, beyond a reasonable doubt, that Caylee is dead and Casey is responsible.


Did Casey Anthony kill her own daughter with chloroform? Eyewitness News has learned someone was looking up the recipe to cook up the chemical on Casey's home computer around the same time Caylee disappeared.

There was evidence of high levels of chloroform in the trunk of Casey's car and sheriff's investigators found that someone on Casey Anthony's computer was researching not where to buy chloroform, but how to make it yourself, which can be done easily.

Eyewitness News legal analyst Bill Sheaffer says, if you were up to no good, there would be an advantage to making it as opposed to buying it.

When you Google "how do you make chloroform," more than a million websites are listed with instructions. On the first one, page one had an explicit warning about chloroform's dangers, calling the chemical extremely dangerous and unpredictable and warning never to allow children to come near chloroform.

FBI lab tests show high levels of chloroform in the trunk of Casey's car, where investigators say Caylee's body had been. And there was a mysterious stain in the trunk along with Caylee's hairs and dirt.

"Another piece of evidence in the circumstantial chain," Sheaffer said.

Sheaffer said it's significant because, if Casey made the chloroform as opposed to buying it, she could have been trying to cover her tracks. Buying it would have generated some sort of record.

"This way certainly, she could argue, 'Alright, I was interested in looking into how to make chloroform, but I never did.' Or, 'That's why you smelled chloroform in the trunk area, because I was experimenting in making it,'" Sheaffer said.

Record or not, the jury would be faced with a compromising question for Casey.

"Why would you need to make chloroform. For what purpose?" Sheaffer questioned.

Last week, the Orange County grand jury heard from the FBI and one of the sheriff's computer investigators and that information is going to be released to the public very soon.


The volunteer group that searched for Caylee is looking to recruit new members. EquuSearch wants current or former members of the military, law enforcement officers or firefighters to serve as team leaders for the next search, scheduled for November 8.

The search is expected to attract several thousand volunteers, including 500 bounty hunters and bail agents.


Casey Anthony's defense attorney is going to start questioning his first prosecution witnesses in the case next Thursday. Among those being questioned is an employee at the Amscot on Goldenrod and Highway 50 where Casey abandoned her car in late June, employees from Johnson's Wrecker Service, the company that towed the car from the Amscot, and Casey's ex-boyfriend Tony Lazzaro.

What do they all have in common? They all had access to Casey's car.


Complete strangers who feel sorry for Casey Anthony are depositing money into her jail account. On Monday, Eyewitness News reported how Casey was lonely in jail with no visitors except her attorney and no money to spend.

Just two days later, she has more than $250. Fifty dollars came from Nola Copeland of California. She's been following Casey's story nationally and, on the phone, she told Eyewitness News she's a good Christian who knows what jail is like and she wanted to make sure Casey could buy the basics like deodorant.

A second woman from Apopka sent Casey $100, but she didn't return calls.

Casey's father and her bail bondsman deposited just over $100 over the last few days.

The jail says inmate accounts cannot hold more than $500. If Casey's account goes above that, the money will be returned to the donor.


In spite of the evidence proving otherwise, the Anthony family insists missing toddler Caylee is still alive. A new tip line was up and running Wednesday morning.

Eyewitness News first reported the family's plans to start the new tip line last week, hours after the spokesperson for Casey's attorney admitted on national television that he believes Caylee is dead (read previous report).

Source: WTF 9

Image Credits Courtesy of Himself at The Brilliant McCann Gallery


  1. Plenty of parallels between the Casey Antony and the Madeleine McCann cases. Yet a big difference, in the latter a political barrier preventing justice. When is this going to be pushed aside and the McCanns charged?

  2. Evil can spiral into further evil. It looks like the McCanns have set a monstrous example others are trying to follow.

  3. Were the forensic scientists in Casey's case independent, or did they work under government backed private contract as did FSS in Madeleine's case ?

  4. anonymous - 11:02

    Over and above the McCanns appalling example of parenting - police findings of death/disposal - is the monstrous political protection enveloping them. Without this, PJ would have arrested and charged last September, as intended and broadcast.

    Taxpayers money continues to be thrown at the unjustifiable media campaign.

  5. In Madeleine's tragedy, the results of the (reported) substantial amount of cadaver hair were withheld from PJ
    (ref: Truth of The Lie).

    Forensic analysis of hairs allegedly found in relation to Casey would have determined % DNA ratio confirming whether they were hers or not. Whilst percentages below 100% are termed 'inconclusive', lower ratios confirm the DNA could belong to 'no other'. This applied to the 15 DNA component match to Madeleine contained in Mr Amaral's testimony.

    Unlike the McCanns, Casey's parents were not afforded government protection, nor were they protected by a censored, manipulative media campaign.

    Damning forensic results leaked to the press in Madeleine's case were proven TRUE by Mr Amaral's testimony.

  6. The same old story repeats itself. The lab found 1 hair in the trunk of the car showing signs of decomposition; tests show that the DNA is consistent with the DNA of the mother or the child. Since the mother is alive it indicates that the hair belongs to the child and that the child is dead. Of course there are already experts claiming that there could be other people with the same Mitochondrial DNA profile. The defence lawyers are also claiming, as reported by Astro, that many people had access to Casey’s car. The grandmother even went as far as saying that someone had put a dead body in the car but that it couldn’t be her granddaughter because she is alive. Defence lawyers are also arguing that the traces of chloroform found in the car could have originated from accidental mixing of chemicals such as bleach and alcohol. The lawyers also point out that the lab report uses words such as “could” and “may” and therefore nothing is definitive. Casey is now receiving daily visits from a clergyman; I guess the pope couldn’t make it.


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