Chasing Casey

America's top not-guilty murderess is holed up in Geauga County AND WE TRACK HER DOWN.

A Scene Adventure News Team Exclusive Report

Featuring Exclusive Adventure News photos by FRANK J. LANZA and Similarly Exclusive InfoGraphic by AARON SECHRIST

The moment the tip landed in the Adventure News Team Inbox, it was time to clear some space on the trophy shelf. After all, Pulitzer-karat gold only comes along several times a career. And this gift was custom-forged in spotty grammar:

Hey asshats, hate the newpapr. you guys really suck!!! y don't u do some reporting isn't casey anthony supposd to be in newbury or sumthing??? my friend saw that ho like dancing on a table at italian joint their. ha maybe SHES IN TOWN TO OPEN A DAYCARE !?!

>:0 mangia mangia xxxxxooooooxxxooo loyal reader

It all made perfect sense. Then again — perfect sense didn't get Casey Anthony this far.

All signs indicate the table-dancing 25-year-old killed her two-year-old daughter Caylee, the better to keep her calendar open for Chili's Two-For-One margarita nights. Claiming the child was kidnapped, she led the country on a crazed ruse that ended with a murder charge — a rap she beat last month when a jury ruled not guilty as the rest of America ruled bullshit. The only question left, apart from whether Nancy Grace would personally gut her with a spork, was where the liberated Lolita would start her life anew.

For weeks, unsubstantiated but highly enthusiastic rumors have linked Casey with sleepy Newbury Township. And it makes all kinds of sense: Geauga County is an oasis for nutjobs laying low, what with its quiet country roads, sparse population, delightful ice cream stands, easy helicopter access, and heavy cartel presence. Plus, we hear she was born near there or something.

In no time, the backwoods newswire served up photos purportedly depicting Casey engaged in activities that closely resembled walking guiltily. Television news crews scuffed their loafers in pursuit, to no avail.

But here in our Inbox was something very different. A provocative new tip — the kind of tip that provocative stories are made of: Casey Anthony is opening a daycare center in our midst. The scenario brings to mind scandalizing questions about government oversight, police misconduct, consumer rights, trans fats, and systematic extermination of America's bald eagle population. In other words, this here is some journalism gold.

The Adventure News Team immediately halted all top-priority exclusives in order to give full pursuit to the Anthony tip. That's right: The full resources of one moderately hung-over reporter and one crack freelance photographer itching for his rightful dose of tabloid fame. Casey Anthony lies in wait in Newbury, and we won't rest till we've found her. But first, who's hungry for breakfast?


August 4

Daybreak in Countryville

It's 8 a.m., and the aforementioned Adventure News Team has hit the streets of Newbury no more than three hours later than planned. Already, nobody is around. As we survey the barren landscape, it all seems crystal clear: The entire populace has gone underground, probably refilling kibble bowls in Casey Anthony's crawl-space hiding spot.

A suitable stand-in for an Orlando stomping ground if ever there was one, downtown here consists of the intersection of State Route 87 and Auburn Road, a neon stretch of sin about as long as a coughing spell. It's just the size for a freshly sprung sweetie to get her Jell-O shot on without the whole world — and that includes you, Anderson Cooper — noticing.

Our first stop: a purposeful march to the town hall, the better to grill officials about our exclusive revelation that one Casey Anthony plans to capitalize on her infamy by opening a chain of daycares headquartered in Newbury. This kind of on-camera confrontation makes for Emmy-winning webisodes. Unfortunately, we do not have a video camera.

But the town hall is empty, the bigwigs nowhere to be found. The lone person to answer the door is a government clerk who's saying all the right things. Too bad for her that "right things" aren't on our shopping list today. She offers only a bland statement denying Casey is in Newbury and dismissing our insider tip as — get this — rumor.

Here's another rumor: Newbury bureaucrats make lousy liars. Yes, there's more than one player in this game of charades. Which always makes for a better game of charades anyway.

The question now: Has the Casey Anthony Deceit Train rolled into the station of local law enforcement? Only time — plus a modest bribe to the gas station attendant who kindly points us in the general direction of the Geauga County Sheriff's Office — will tell.


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