Casey Anthony must serve probation, appeals court rules

Something tells me that we haven’t heard the last of Casey Anthony’s probation. In fact, I wouldn’t be surprised if there is a secondary ruling by the probation office which would allow Casey to serve her probation outside of Orange County, if not Florida altogether, in an effort to protect her safety. It will be interesting to see how this all pans out. TGO

Refer to story below. Source: CNN

By the CNN Wire Staff, August 24, 2011 6:56 a.m. EDT

(CNN) — Casey Anthony must serve a year of probation after being convicted on check fraud charges, a Florida appeals court ruled Tuesday.

Anthony cannot “take advantage” of an administrative error to avoid serving the 2010 sentence, the appeals court ruled.

The Fifth District Court of Appeal’s ruling comes a day after Florida’s attorney general filed a motion in the case.

Attorney General Pamela Bondi argued that a clerical error should not prevent Anthony from abiding by a judge’s verbal order.

Anthony “and her lawyers were well aware that her probationary placement was not to begin until her release from confinement,” the appeals court ruling said.

Anthony has been in seclusion since her July acquittal on murder charges in the 2008 death of her 2-year-old daughter, Caylee, and her subsequent release from jail.

Anthony was convicted of felony check fraud for stealing a checkbook from a friend and writing five checks for $644.25. A judge sentenced her in that case in January 2010.

Orange County Chief Judge Belvin Perry Jr. ruled earlier this month that she had to report for probation on the bad-check charge by Friday.

The attorney general’s office wrote that Anthony “upon her release (July 17), should have reported” for probation — something she did not do.

Anthony’s probation order requires her to live in Orange County, Florida, unless the probation office allows her to leave. She has received no such approval, a corrections department spokeswoman has said.

But Anthony’s attorneys have argued repeatedly that Anthony should not have to return to serve her probation in Florida.

In an emergency petition filed on Wednesday with the same appeals court, Anthony’s defense team asked that the court overturn Perry’s order before the required date. They also asked the appellate court to strip Perry of further jurisdiction in the case.

Orange County Circuit Judge Stan Strickland had earlier ordered Anthony to serve a year of probation after her release in the charges involving her daughter, but a clerk misunderstood the judge and prepared an order that the judge later signed, instructing that Anthony would serve the probation while in custody awaiting trial.

The order was updated August 1 to add the words “upon release.” But Anthony’s lawyers contended that she couldn’t be required to serve probation, arguing that she had already served it while in custody under a signed order from Strickland.

Serving the sentence now would violate constitutional protections against having to serve a sentence twice for the same offense, they argued.

Perry ruled earlier this month that Strickland’s verbal order was binding — a ruling the appeals court upheld Tuesday.

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