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COLUMN

Happytown

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Plainclothes city police officer Rich Ruth, relieved of the responsibility of having to videotape and count the number of individuals being fed by OFNB members, found a minute to meditate on the trial. “The state had their top prosecutors on it – nobody could have done a better job,” Ruth said. “But personally, I think she’s guilty.”

Later, the Weekly found anarchist and longtime OFNB member Ben Markeson standing beside an idling police paddywagon. “I think it shows that José Baez is a better lawyer than a lot of people thought, and I think Casey Anthony should be grateful to him for the rest of her life,” Markeson said. “I don’t give a damn about Casey Anthony, but I feel sad for that little girl,because she never had a chance to live, you know?”

Markeson’s mortal enemy, Mayor Buddy Dyer (or, as Markeson calls him, John Dyer), did not arrive at an opposing conclusion when asked about the Anthony trial. Instead, he safely opted to compliment another powerful public official. “Judge Perry did a really good job in handling the courtroom and the whole spectacle, and came across in a manner that I think reflected well on Orlando,” Dyer said.

Speaking of things that reflect on Orlando, how about those food-sharing arrests?

Other things that don’t reflect

well on anybody: Not reporting your child missing when you can’t seem to find her for more than a month, lying to your mom about your fake nanny, lying to police, giving people the finger and getting caught on tape doing it. That last one is particularly ugly if you’re part of the defense team that helped the woman who was just tried for murder, manslaughter, child abuse and more beat the rap on all but the lying-to-police business.

It’s even uglier when you and your team is caught, say, in a bar across the streetfrom the courthouse, toasting your big win with your colleagues while the media, which you’ve just verbally abused, and mobs of angry villagers demanding Justice for Caylee,are milling about outside.

Cheney Mason,one of Anthony’s attorneys, was whooping it up with José Baez and other Team Anthony legal types at Terrace 390 after the jury declared Casey not guilty of killing her daughter. When he caught sight of an AP reporter snapping photos of their happy hour, Cheney issued the one-finger salute (a similar act landed a Casey groupie, the hapless young Matthew Bartlett, six days in jail when he directed that same gesture toward a prosecutor in the courtroom during the trial).

The images of Mason have since made the rounds, and the defense team is being roundly chastised for being, among other things “insensitive and loutish,” according to The Daily Mail, which also noted that defense lawyer Dorothy Clay Simswas spotted “jigging up and down,performing a victory dancefor her colleagues before turning her phone towards outraged onlookers to film their shocked reactions.” Now that’s class!

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