Florida’s Casey Anthony trial will cost the court system more than $361,000, mostly to house, feed and transport sequestered jurors for eight weeks, reports the Orlando Sentinel. Those extraordinary expenses and other costs are likely to make the case one of the most expensive trials in Florida criminal history. The jury would be sequestered because of heavy media coverage. the O.J. Simpson murder trial cost Los Angeles County an estimated $9 million in court and prosecution costs, said USA Today.
The expense breakdown says 20 jurors are expected to be seated — instead of the more common 14, which includes 12 jurors and two alternates. In the Anthony case, there likely will be eight alternates. Anthony, who turns 25 Saturday, is charged with first-degree murder in the 2008 death of her 2-year-old daughter, Caylee Marie. Her trial is expected to start with jury selection May 9. Court official Karen Levey researched other cases in Florida and beyond and found that relatively few state-level trials have jurors sequestered for extended periods of time. It has been about 20 years since Orange County has sequestered a jury for the duration of a trial. Since then, juries have been sequestered, on occasion, during deliberations.