June 4, 2011 -- An FBI hair analyst testified today that a hair found in the trunk of Casey Anthony's car likely came from a dead body.
Karen Korsberg Lowe said she felt definitively that the sample of hair removed from the trunk showed post-mortem banding -meaning that hair was consistent with hair from a dead body, not a live one.
"It has a darkened band at the root portion of the hair. This is consistent with apparent decomposition," Lowe said during the court session this morning.
Casey Anthony is accused of murdering her 2-year-old daughter Caylee. The Florida mother is charged with first-degree murder.
Lowe said the hair was similar to one removed from Caylee but not the same when compared to a sample from Casey Anthony.
Prosecutors say the hair is evidence that Caylee was dead inside in the trunk and not alive.
The defense challenged Lowe's credentials in microscopic hair tests and the limitation of such analysis.
The defense claimed that Caylee died after accidently drowning in her grandparent's swimming pool.
Mike Vincent, an assistant supervisor with the Orange County Sheriff's office also testified how he collected air samples as evidence.
The defense questioned the fact that this was the first time these air samples have ever been used in court and that the actual expert had no experience doing this before.
'Smelled Like Human Decomposition"
On Friday afternoon, prosecutors focused on Casey Anthony's white Pontiac Sunfire, the car she abandoned and that has tested positive for human decomposition and chloroform.
Gerardo Bloise, the crime scene investigator who pulled evidence from the car, said that it smelled like human decomposition.
"When I opened the driver's side, I immediately smelled the odor of decomposition coming from inside the car," Bloise testified.
"On my 23 years experience ... yes I can determine professionally speaking, it was the smell of human decomposition," Bloise told jurors Friday.
Several items from Anthony's car were submitted into evidence, including the spare tire cover and liner. A stain was found where the spare tire cover was, but it did not test positive for blood, Bloise said.
Casey Anthony's defense team tried to discredit the investigator's analysis, saying their own independent investigation found more hair in the car and that Bloise's supervisor approved the report six months after it was written.
The car was picked up from a tow yard by George and Cindy Anthony on July 15, 2008. Its potent smell and the fact that their daughter, Casey Anthony, had abandoned it prompted them to track their daughter down.
When they realized Caylee was missing, Cindy Anthony made three tearful calls to 911, saying that her daughter's car smelled like there had been a dead body in it and that Caylee was missing.
Casey Anthony told her family that the car had run out of gas and the gas gauge wasn't working.
Bloise said that the gas gauge appeared to be working properly from his investigation.
Earlier on Friday, jurors heard jailhouse tapes that show Casey Anthony lying day after day to her parents by keeping the idea alive that Caylee is missing, not dead.
Casey Anthony threatened to hang up on a jailhouse conversation with her parents when her clearly distraught mother begs Casey for any information that can help them find 2-year-old Caylee.
During the call, Casey Anthony complains that no one is treating her like a victim.
The taped conversation was one of three submitted as evidence Friday in Casey Anthony's first degree murder trial, and each of the tapes reveal George and Cindy Anthony as emotionally exhausted but still determined to find their granddaughter Caylee.
The tapes are from August 2008, weeks into the search for the missing toddler.
"I'm not doing well ... Lee's [Casey Anthony's brother] been sick ... Dad's blowing up at the media ... somebody just said that Caylee's dead, she drowned in the family pool," said Cindy Anthony in a jailhouse conversation on Aug.14, 2008.
Casey Anthony coolly responds to the reports that Caylee drowned by saying, "Surprise, surprise."