Casey Anthony: Zenaida Gonzalez Defamation Case Can Proceed To Trial

  on April 15 2012 7:11 AM
Casey Anthony
Casey Anthony Reuters/File Photo

A defamation lawsuit against Casey Anthony can go forward to trial early next year, an Orange County Circuit Court judge ruled Thursday.

Zenaida Gonzalez has sued the 26-year-old tot mom for defamation. Gonzalez claimed that Anthony defamed her and harassed her after she came up with a fictitious nanny name Zenaida Gonzalez-Fernandez during the murder trial of her two-year-old daughter Caylee Anthony last summer.

During the trial, Anthony said that Nanny Gonzalez-Fernandez abducted her daughter Caylee in 2008. Anthony's defense later said that Caylee was not abducted by any nanny, but she was drowned in the family's swimming pool.

Officials were unable to find nanny, but they succeeded in finding a woman with same Gonzalez name.

The Orlando mother was acquitted in the murder of her daughter but was convicted on four counts of giving false information to law enforcement officers during the murder trial.

After hearing three hours of argument from both sides, Florida judge Lisa Munyon announced that she would rule on the lawsuit against Anthony within 60 days.

On Thursday, Munyon said that the main issue of whether or not Anthony mentioned Gonzalez in her police statements or identified her when she talked to her parents when they visited her in jail must be decided by a jury.

Both parties agree that the defendant did not implicate (Gonzalez) in the disappearance of the child in the July 16, 2008, statements to law enforcement, Munyon wrote in her ruling. However, the inferences to be drawn from the July 25, 2008, statement (to her parents) are disputed matters for jury determination.

Last month, after hearing for three hours from both sides, Munyon announced that she would rule on the law suit within 60 days.

During the March hearing, Gonzalez attorney Keith Mitnik called for a summary judgment in their client's favor and said that they had already provided enough proof to show that their client was defamed by Anthony.

Mitnik played a jailhouse clip in which Anthony alleged that officials never showed her Gonzalez's photo, but actually they did.

She said, 'They did not show me a picture. They did not show me a picture of that lady from Kissimmee' Mitnik said Friday.

Charles Greene, Anthony's attorney, argued that the same video also showed that the sketch Anthony gave of the nanny had no resemblance to Gonzalez and Anthony never said she abducted her.

The defamation trial is slated to begin January 2, 2013.

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