As a result, the Probation Department conducted Anthony’s supervised probation while she was still in jail awaiting the murder trial. At the conclusion of her year-long supervision, Anthony was given a letter acknowledging that she had successfully completed her probation.
Anthony was later acquitted or the murder charges and was released from jail on July 17. The acquittal sparked outrage across the country among many who had been closely following the high-profile case and had concluded – unlike the jury – that she was guilty.
After her release, Strickland, acting on his own, issued a corrected sentence, ordering Anthony to return within 72 hours to Orlando to serve her probation term.
That order was stayed pending a hearing conducted by Chief Judge Belvin Perry. Last week, the chief judge reimposed Strickland’s amended sentence and ordered Anthony to report for probation by Aug. 26.
In his ruling, Perry said the goal of probation was to provide for a period of supervision once released from incarceration. Since Anthony had not been subject to supervision outside jail, her earlier supervision while in jail did not count to satisfy her sentence, the judge ruled.
The judge also blamed Anthony’s defense counsel for failing to notify Strickland that Anthony’s probation was being conducted while she was in jail.
In their appeal, the lawyers blasted back at Perry for what they said were “three pages of moralizing” in his ruling. They said state prosecutors received formal notice that Anthony’s probation was beginning in jail, but no notice went to defense counsel. In addition, they said Strickland “actually signed the original order which established probation while the defendant was awaiting trial.”
“That the court feels it necessary to chastise the defense (and the defense alone – by name) for not bringing this matter to the court’s attention is, at best, misplaced,” the appeal says.