As the prosecution rests in the George Zimmerman trial, many legal analysts can’t help, but compare the case to the Casey Anthony case, another famous Central Florida case.  For years, that case was and still is highly contentious and mysterious.  Some instances in the Zimmerman trial do mirror the Anthony trial to a much smaller scale, but no other event more so than Don West having ice cream with his daughters.  Many people have attacked him over this, including the prosecution who have requested an inquiry, claiming it in some way spoke derogatorily about the education level of Rachel Jeantel their star witness.  This was due to misunderstood Instagram hashtags attached to a post clearly about a daughter congratulating her father, who is in a tough case.  No other lawyer can understand this better than Dorothy Clay Sims, one of Anthony’s attorneys during her trial.  She has been repeatedly attacked both professionally and personally.  She refused to speak to the media for a very long time, until now.  She did an email interview with  Sims withdrew as Anthony’s attorney more than a year ago.  Much like John Adams, she has received flack for doing what is Constitutionally correct.  Even though we still call the Boston Massacre, a massacre in the textbooks, doesn’t make it true.
…Sims has refused interviews with the media for more than a year because of what she describes as the media’s misrepresentation of Anthony, but she agreed to speak to the Star-Banner via email.  Sims’ role in the case was to research expert witnesses, oversee forensic issues, take depositions, assist in jury selection and question several witnesses on the stand…“Our team received death threats, hideous calls, nasty letters and we still do,” she said. Sims said her hotel room was broken into during jury selection, and there were helicopters over her house.  “I hope folks are more compassionate and will allow justice to take its course,” she said of the Zimmerman trial, which she is following. “I think this case is somewhat less polarizing for a number of reasons, which may mean the lawyers get less grief.”  While Sims acknowledges that defending a controversial client can be “difficult” and at times “horrible,” it doesn’t change the fact that the burden is on the state to prove there is no reasonable doubt about the defendant’s guilt.

In some ways, Sims has been forever changed by the Anthony trial. 

“It caused me great disappointment to see how powerful certain media outlets were and how easily people made decisions with so little information,” she said.

Sims said she realized that she, too, has been guilty of making some decisions with little information and after the trial vowed to be more discerning in the future. She noted, for instance, that it was widely believed that police found evidence of 84 searches for the term “chloroform” on the Anthony family computer. In reality, she said, the chloroform searches were false and the hits were a combination of Myspace hits and software errors. While the initial claim received a substantial amount of media attention, the correction received little, if any.

Sims did point to a positive impact of the case. 

“This case, however, did result in my gratitude and appreciation for our jury system and the folks on the jury who took their job very seriously. Look at what happens when you sequester the decision-makers from emails and TV.” 

…A large portion of the media coverage during the Anthony trial focused on the defendant’s perceived lack of remorse.

“When bloggers weighed in saying Casey was guilty because she didn’t react to a traumatic situation the way they would react, they probably have no idea what they are talking about,” Sims said. 

The trial was emotional for Sims, she admitted. Many times, TV cameras captured Sims comforting her client.

“I cared for and continue to care for Casey a great deal,” she said. “It would have been easier had I not cared for Casey. It was painful to care for a young person whom you feared may be executed if wrongly convicted. Terribly painful. It kept me up at night.” 

It affected others around Anthony as well.  Sims recalled going to see Anthony inside the jail after the verdict. A law enforcement officer leaned over his desk, smiled, and said to Sims,

“I just want to let you know that when the verdict was read, I cried. I cried because it was the right verdict. I was so relieved.” He then shook Sims’ hand…


The truth is that you can’t show someone the other side of things if they only care about what they believe.  People have to change their own behaviors; no one can change it for them.  The media could make this world a better place, as could the Internet, but does it?  If you read any comment sections during any judicial proceeding you will see it does not.

  1. Very well said Mis.Sims!!!


  2. Lon Spector says:

    The Casey accquital was a miracle. Everything broke her way. Let’s just hope she makes the
    most of her second chance.


  3. JanCorey says:

    Another prosecution-failure case, just like the George Zimmerman case, and about 200,000,000,000 others. Who’s paying these prosecutors anyways? Why don’t facts and evidence matter to them?


Join the Discussion

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s