Anthony was arrested on 16 July 2008, the day after Caylee was reported missing. She was charged with giving false statements, child neglect and obstruction of criminal investigation. At first she was denied bail, then on 22 July 2008, her bail bond was set at $500 000.
In the meantime on 11, 12 and 13 August, meter reader Roy Kronk alerted the police to a suspicious object found in a wooded area near the Anthony residence. Officers did eventually accompany him to the forest where he claimed he had seen a skull, but they found nothing. It is alleged officers were reluctant to enter the swamp area due to snakes.
Anthony’s bond was posted on 20 August 2008 by bounty hunter Leonard Padilia, in the hope of her assisting in finding Caylee’s body. Anthony was released the following day. But her freedom was short lived when she was re-arrested on 29 August, for an unrelated cheque fraud case.
On 5 September 2008, Anthony was released when her parents posted her bond and she was fitted with electronic tracking device. Three days later protesters outside the Anthony family home chanter “baby killer”. On 15 September she turned herself in again over an additional cheque fraud charge, but her bond of $ 1 250.00 was paid and she was released the next day.
A month later, on 14 October 2008, she was indicted on charges of first degree murder aggravated child abuse, aggravated manslaughter of a child, four counts of providing false information to the police. The judge ordered that Anthony be held again, without bond. A week later the charge of child neglect was dropped. She pleaded not guilty on all counts. Caylee was still missing and no body had been found.
This changed when on 11 December 2008, when Kronk again called the police and this time they found the body of a child in a rubbish bag. Duct tape was sticking to the skull. A Winnie the Pooh blanket that matched Caylee’s bedding at home and a laundry bag were also found at the scene. Eight days later, medical examiner Dr Jan Garavaglia identified the body as that of Caylee’s and found the cause of death to be undetermined.