ORLANDO, Fla. - Seventeen men and women from Pinellas County were brought to Orange County for six weeks under strict sequestration to determine if Casey Anthony was guilty of killing her daughter, but what they did outside the courtroom has been a mystery -- until now.
Court spokeswoman Karen Levey gave insight Friday into how the jurors spent their time, after Judge Belvin Perry dropped little hints during the trial, referencing food requests from the jurors and planned activities.
Levey said all 17 jurors were booked into the Rosen Shingle Creek Resort under a fake group name -- "The Rosen Transfer Students Conference." The court paid $112 per room per night for the stay. The jurors were referred to as "Rosen Student No. 1," and so on.
From the week before Memorial Day, until the day after Independence Day, jurors were never alone outside of time in their hotel rooms.
"There was never a time when a juror could travel without an Orange County Deputy with him or her," Levey said.
At first, jurors were allowed to watch a few dozen TV stations, but that dwindled to two shopping networks, and eventually, 10 days before the verdict, they were not allowed to watch any TV at all.
"Somewhere along the line, stations started to cover it (the trial) gavel-to-gavel. And Brighthouse Networks started cross-promoting," Levey said. "It started happening on the SyFy Channel, Cartoon Network, stations you would never ever think would do a promo for the Casey Anthony trial."
The jurors racked up nearly $25,000 in food bills, mostly at the hotel, but they did have some nights out.
Those special meals included one at the private University Club and a lunch at the Citrus Club, both in downtown Orlando.
"The dinners were eaten at the hotels, or at some restaurants that had private dining facilities, like Olive Garden, Houlihans, Tony Romas, places that had rooms that could be secured and deputies could be there," Levey said.
Deputies went to the movies with the jurors as well. They saw "The Green Lantern," "The Hangover 2," and "Super 8."
A jury of 12 -- five of the jurors were alternates who did not participate in the deliberation process -- found Anthony not guilty of all felony charges in Caylee's death. They found her guilty of four misdemeanor charges of providing false information to a law enforcement officer.
Perry sentenced Anthony to four years in jail, one year for each count, but with time served and gain time, Anthony is expected to be released next weekend. She has been in the Orange County Jail since October 2008.
Levey said when the jurors were split up for deliberations on July 4, they were all offered to watch the fireworks over Lake Eola from the courthouse, but only the five alternates accepted. The 12 jurors returned their verdict the following afternoon.
The cost to house, feed and transport the jurors added up to more than $160,000.
The original cost estimate was $360,000, but that included Orange County Sheriff's Office expenses, which have not yet been added.
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