Casey Anthony's trial drew to a close, Tuesday, with the sequestered jury of seven women and five men returning a not guilty verdict.
It was widely expected that the jury will return a guilty verdict against Casey, who has been charged with seven counts, including first degree murder, aggravated child abuse and misleading the police in their investigation into the death of Caylee.
Two-year old Caylee was last seen alive on June 16 and it was only on July 15 that she was reported missing by her mother Casey Anthony to the police. Cindy, Casey's mother had also alerted the police by calling a 911 dispatcher and saying that she had smelled a dead body in the trunk of Casey's car that was spotted in an impound lot. The car was later towed by authorities for forensic analysis.
Initially, Casey told the police that a babysitter called Zenaida Fernandez-Gonzalez (Zanny the nanny) had abducted Caylee.
Investigations showed Casey was lying as the babysitter Zanny was fictitious. Five months later, in December 2008, Caylee's decomposed skeletal remains were found in a wooded area near the Anthony home by a meter reader who was relieving himself.
The prosecutors banked on circumstantial evidence to claim that Casey had chloroformed Caylee and then put duct tape over her nose and mouth, suffocating the girl.
Casey's lawyers claim Caylee was not murdered. They say the toddler accidentally drowned in the family swimming pool and George, Casey's father, helped her keep the death a secret. George has denied the claim.
Though popular opinion came to the conclusion that Casey was guilty, the jury were to hold to a higher standard that the accused should be guilty beyond reasonable doubt.
International Business Times (San Francisco edition) explores top 14 reasons why the jury returned the verdict of not guilty.