(Photo: Reuters / Red Huber)
Within hours of the not guilty verdict in the Casey Anthony trial, fervent follower of the case, Michelle Crowder, started a petition on change.org, “Create Caylee’s Law.”
The petition is becoming the fastest growing ever on the website.
The Caylee’s Law Petition insists there be a federal law against parents who fail to notify authorities within 24 hours of a child’s disappearance or within an hour of a child’s death.
Directed at President Obama and Congress, the petition had 15,000 signatures by midnight the day of the trial verdict.
By the following day, the petition had accumulated 150,000 signatures.
Making “failure to report” a felony would prevent tragedies such as the death of Caylee Anthony going unreported for such an extended period, the petition maintains. If the death or disappearance were not reported, it would be deemed illegal and chargeable under the proposal.
The petition is to a degree serving as an outlet for the anger and disappointment of the public over the acquittal of Casey Anthony. Early this week, the 25-year-old was found not guilty of first-degree murder, manslaughter, and child abuse for the death of her 2-year-old daughter, Caylee. She was found guilty on four separate counts of lying to law enforcement.
While the petition is drawing wide support, the proposal has also brought up questions about the constitutionality of such a law.
By failing to report Caylee’s disappearance, Casey Anthony did not infringe child endangerment, child neglect, or obstruction of justice laws.
Crowder, the creator of the Caylee Law petition, has said she is mystified and outraged by this, and thousands of others share her sentiment.
As of Friday night, the petition has more than 850,000 signatures.
Several lawmakers – including those in Oklahoma, Kentucky and Florida, where the murder trial took place this year – have also announced plans to introduce Caylee's Law.