Proposed ‘Caylee’s Law’ Starts To Foment In California

RIVERSIDE (CBS) — Legislators all over the country are introducing so-called “Caylee’s Laws” — proposed laws that would make it a felony for a parent or guardian to fail to report their child missing.

The law, of course, is inspired by the acquittal last week of Casey Anthony in the death of her daughter, Caylee.

Wednesday a Riverside County lawmaker said California was jumping on that national bandwagon.

Assemblyman Paul Cook (R – Beaumont) said that he readying a “Caylee’s Law” bill for California that would close off the kind of loopholes that allowed Anthony to avoid serving time in prison for lying to police during the investigation into her 2-year-old’s disappearance and subsequent murder.

“Parents are the legal and moral caretakers of their children, and if something happens, they should notify the proper authorities,” Cook said.

“When a child goes missing or, in the worst-case scenario, a child dies, the early hours are critical to law enforcement,” he said. “Our laws shouldn’t allow bad actors like Casey Anthony to wait over a month to report a missing child. This bill will go after people like her but won’t incriminate well-meaning or distraught parents.”

An Orlando, Fla, jury found the 25-year-old Anthony not guilty of murder on July 5. Her daughter went missing in July 2008, but it was 31 days before the child’s disappearance was reported to police — by her grandparents.

Anthony told investigators the youngster had drowned in a swimming pool accidentally, and she disposed of her remains in a panic. The woman was photographed partying in clubs in the weeks that followed.

Anthony was convicted of four counts of falsifying police reports, each count carrying a maximum one-year prison term. The defendant was sentenced to four years behind bars, but won’t serve a day because of time served in jail and good behavior credits.

According to Cook, Caylee’s Law would make it a criminal offense not to report a child under 12 missing within 48 hours. Parents, legal guardians and caretakers would also be held responsible for a failure to notify police within 2 hours of finding their child’s remains.

Efforts to get similar laws on the books are under way in Florida, New York, Oklahoma and West Virginia.

Co-sponsors of Cook’s bill include Sen. Tom Berryhill, R-Modesto, and Assembly members Cathleen Galgiani, D-Stockton, Kevin Jeffries, R-Lake Elsinore, and David Valadao, R-Hanford.

“We have watched a tragedy unfold in Florida, where no justice has been found for Caylee Anthony, causing us to examine our own laws,” Jeffries said. “We must act to ensure the protection of our children and guarantee justice is not obstructed.”

(©2011 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. Wire services contributed to this report.)

  • JanCorey

    Now they need to create a CASEY LAW to charge anyone who makes any comments that are negative against anyone that they do not personally believe just because they do not understand the judicial system. Penalty for violation: death penalty.

  • JanCorey

    You are absolutely right ih8politicians. Bravo! :)

  • jk

    Let me guess, these legislators are Republicans tring to legislate every facet of our lives. They should just make it illeagle to have children without a permit.

    • Jessenia Martinez

      I agree because some idiots should not have kids.

  • JanCorey

    We do and are going to have more just because you said you hope we don’t. Gettin ready as I type.

    OK, ready now…………….

  • Katie Cole

    i agree what they are doing in california that little girl did not deserve what happend to her. caseys dad is a ex cop and thats why she got away with it i hope that when she dies that god sends her to hell. i hope they pass the law there are too many dead kids in this world and no one knows what happend to them i feel so bad for caylee i hope she can rest in peace now

  • Janel Corey

    jancorey can’t have kids. He is a man that has been blogging for the past 3 years as michellefrommadison. He is an identity thief and is very demented. He is now posting with my name. Google michellefrommadison and you will see what I mean. To the blog owner: it would be nice if you could remove my name from his tasteless posts.

    • Ron

      Thanks for the info Janel. I am sorry for your identity theft. But it makes sense, that such a vial, heartless post would come from someone that uses someone else’s identity. I noticed that my response to him/her(?) was removed, but his/her response ” …it is just one dead kid…” is still there.

  • Janel Corey

    You really have to be disturbed to post with someones personal name. I just don’t understand why the blog owner allows it?

  • Lori Lachenmeier

    Ridiculous, You can mandate morals by law. This law would not have done anything at all for Caylee. All it would do is hit immoral individuals like Casey with a felony. But seriously people, do you think she would have sat and thought to herself, “Oh I better file a police report on my daughter cuz it’s a felony if I don’t?” Hell no ! She was interested in covering it up. Laws need to stay out of morality because you can’t force morals on an individual.

    • Ron


      She would have been convicted for NOT reporting her missing child w/in in the required short reporting time. Any law that helps convict a PIECE of @HIT person, like her, that should NOT have had kids, is a GREAT law.

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