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Casey Anthony Trial Update: Brother Lee testifies sister's car smelled "offensive"

Defendant Casey Anthony listens to her mother's testimony during her trial at the Orange County Courthouse in Orlando, Fla., Tuesday, May 31, 2011. AP Photo

Casey Anthony Trial Update: Anthony said car stench was from dead animal, says former best friend
Defendant Casey Anthony at her trial in Orlando, Fla., Tuesday, May 31, 2011.
AP Photo

(CBS/WKMG/AP) ORLANDO, Fla. - Lee Anthony, Casey Anthony's brother, was called to testify for the first time in his sister's murder trial Wednesday morning.

Pictures: Casey and Caylee Anthony, Personal Photos

Lee Anthony testified about the weeks in July 2008 leading up to the discovery that his niece, Caylee Anthony, was missing. He said he had gone to the bar area of downtown Orlando on July 3 to look for his sister after their mother expressed concern that she had not seen her daughter or granddaughter in several weeks.

He testified that on July 15, 2008 he asked his sister why she wouldn't let the family see Caylee, and she responded, "Maybe because I'm a spiteful (expletive)." That is the same day their mother, Cindy Anthony, called 911 to report Caylee missing.

Lee Anthony said his sister told him their mother had said to Casey that she was an unfit mother. He also said Cindy Anthony had referred to Caylee as a mistake, but the best mistake Casey Anthony had ever made.

He also described the smell of his sister's car on that day as "offensive." Several other witnesses have testified that Casey Anthony's white Pontiac Sunfire smelled of human decomposition.

Lee Anthony said he had never heard of a nanny caring for Caylee until Casey Anthony told him on July 15 that Caylee was taken by a nanny named Zenaida Gonzalez and had been gone for 31 days. The defense has since acknowledged that this person does not exist.

Earlier Wednesday, Amy Huizenga, Casey Anthony's former best friend, was cross-examined by Anthony's defense attorney about their friendship.

Anthony is on trial for first-degree murder for the death of her toddler, Caylee. If convicted, she could be sentenced to death.

She has pleaded not guilty and her defense told the jury that Caylee died in an accidental drowning in the family's swimming pool.

The Casey Anthony case was recently reported on by "48 Hours Mystery."

Complete coverage of Casey Anthony on Crimesider

  • Camille Mann

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