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Jurors watch graphic new video in Casey Anthony trial

By the CNN Wire Staff
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Graphic photos shown at Anthony trial
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
    NEW: The video shows pictures depicting duct tape on Caylee's faceNEW: Judge Perry denies a mistrial motion made by the defenseMedical examiner: No question Caylee's death was intentionalAnthony is accused of killing her daughter Caylee, 2, in 2008

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Orlando (CNN) -- The duct tape found on Caylee Anthony's skull could have been sufficient to kill the little girl, prosecutors said Friday.

The state showed jurors a graphic new video, which presented pictures of Caylee's skull superimposed over her smiling face. It demonstrated the duct tape could conceivably cover both the girl's nose and mouth, suffocating her as prosecutors allege.

"I believe that the exhibit was necessary to establish the state's theory that this duct tape was sufficient to be the murder weapon," said attorney Jeff Ashton.

The defense had argued vigorously against allowing the video into court, saying it presented just one of many possible scenarios and would serve only to inflame sentiments among the jurors.

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But Orange County Chief Judge Belvin Perry agreed to allow the video into evidence. Determining the role of duct tape in the girl's death was "highly relevant," he said.

Perry also denied a mistrial motion made by the defense, related to the video, at the close of Friday's proceedings.

Caylee's mother, Casey Anthony, 25, faces seven counts in her daughter's death, including first-degree murder, aggravated child abuse and misleading investigators. If convicted, she could face the death penalty.

Earlier Friday, the chief medical examiner in the case said the way in which prosecutors say Caylee's body was discarded left no doubt that the girl was intentionally killed.

Dr. Jan Garvaglia testified that Anthony's failure to report her daughter missing for more than a month was just one of three red flags that strongly indicate foul play.

The others were the discovery of the girl's remains amidst black garbage bags in a wooded field -- "tossed in a bag to rot" was her testimony -- and the presence of duct tape on the girl's skull.

"There is no child that should have duct tape on its face when it dies," Garvaglia testified. "There is no reason to put duct tape on the face after it dies."

Attorneys for Anthony have said Caylee was not killed, but rather drowned in the family pool and that Casey Anthony and her father, George Anthony, panicked and tried to cover up the death. George Anthony denied that scenario during his testimony.

Prosecutors allege Anthony used chloroform on her daughter and suffocated her by putting duct tape over the little girl's mouth and nose. They allege she put her daughter's body in her car trunk before disposing of it. Caylee's skeletal remains were found on December 11, 2008, less than a mile from the home of Anthony's parents.

Anthony has pleaded not guilty and denied having anything to do with her daughter's death.

Friday morning, jurors saw graphic photos of Caylee's bones and heard testimony that they had been gnawed by animals as her body decomposed during as much as six months in the field. Anthony looked down during the presentations, her head in hand, and daubed her face with a tissue. She appeared to sob at times.

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The duct tape and its position on Caylee's skull have been points of discussion in the trial for two days.

Early Friday, a forensic anthropologist who examined the skull, John Schultz of the University of Central Florida, said under questioning from defense attorney J. Cheney Mason that the tape was not covering the nose hole on Caylee's skull when he examined it.

On Thursday, Dr. Gary Utz, the chief deputy medical examiner for Orange County, testified the girl's jaw still had the jawbone attached when it was recovered -- relatively rare given the stage of decomposition. The duct tape, he testified, was helping keep the jawbone attached, along with hair on the skull.

During cross-examination Friday morning, defense attorney Mason challenged prosecutors' claims that Caylee's jaw was held to her skull by the tape.

Mason asked if the tape was wrapped around the skull or just attached on the left side, to which Utz responded that there were "points of adherence" on the right side.

When asked by Mason whether the jaw came off while he was handling it, Utz said that it did not.

Anthony returned to court Friday after appearing to fall ill Thursday afternoon as jurors were viewing graphic images of Caylee's remains. Perry ended the day early without an explanation to jurors.

She continued to look shaken for much of Friday morning's testimony.

Schultz said that one image, which showed Caylee's vertebrae -- the bones that made up her spine -- suggest that she was left at the site where the remains were discovered before her body decomposed.

He explained that in children, in order to allow room for growth, individual vertebrae are not yet fused together. Because Caylee's were found in one location, it suggested they had been held together by soft tissue when they were placed there, he testified.

Schultz testified that Caylee's body could have been in the woods for about six months, about the length of time that had passed between the time her family last saw her in June 2008 and the discovery of her remains in December 2008. The bones showed no evidence of any injuries or trauma prior to her death, he said.

In Session's Nancy Leung contributed to this report.

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