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Why George Anthony Is on Suicide Watch

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His granddaughter is dead, and his daughter is in jail for first-degree murder. Is it any surprise George Anthony might attempt to take his own life?


To say George Anthony has been under tremendous stress and strain is an understatement. From July 16, when his beloved granddaughter went missing, to December 11th, when her remains where found, the 57-year-old former Ohio sheriff's deputy has had to wrestle with the possibility that his own daughter Casey Anthony was the murderer.

Today, George Anthony is on suicide watch in a Florida hospital.

Dr. Charles Sophy, Medical Director for the Los Angeles County Department of Children and Family Services, says, "George Anthony is a man who is forced to come to grips to face himself."

That won't be easy for the grieving grandfather, who throughout the entire investigation has seemingly lived in a state of constant denial.

"I don't want to believe that I have raised someone, and brought someone in this world, that could do something to another person. I don't want to believe that," Anthony told detectives back in July 2008. He also confessed the smell that emanated from Casey Anthony's abandoned car was familiar to him ... the smell of death: "It's a smell that you never ... get rid of."

But over time, perhaps spearheaded by his wife Cindy, George began to backpedal and remained steadfast in his belief of Casey's innocence. At one point, he even said he believed that his daughter was "110% innocent." Were they covering up the truth or obstructing justice? Only they know the answer to that question ... at least for now.

Today, it seems, the weight of the situation has become too much for him to bear. New documents released on Wednesday served up grisly details -- the heart-shaped sticker placed on Caylee's duct-taped mouth, the Winnie the Pooh blanket buried with the child's remains in a laundry bag. These items presumably could be easily traced back to the Anthony's home, further implicating his daughter in Caylee's murder. Surely adding to Anthony's collective anxiety are the unsubstantiated reports of incestuous relationships within the Anthony's own family and that they plan to profit from Caylee's memorial.

"You don't understand, do you? You just don't understand what this is like," a despondent Anthony reportedly told officers who drove him to Halifax Medical Center this morning for evaluation.

The enormous pressure George Anthony has been under has made him at times prone to violent outbursts, especially when dealing with protesters. Anxiety, according to Dr. Sophy, manifests itself in different ways. "Often it will then spill into depression," he explains.

For George Anthony, who holed himself up in a Daytona Beach motel and penned a six-page suicide note, that depression could have easily ended his life had he not been tracked down first by police via his cell-phone "pings." He reportedly had sent a text message a short time earlier that said he "wanted to make sure Caylee was in God's arms."

How heartbreaking.

The first step in George Anthony's recovery, says Dr. Sophy, is "to keep him safe so he can be on the path to forthright and truthful." That's why he's currently on suicide watch now.

What exactly do you think motivated George Anthony's suicide attempt?

Recently released documents in the Casey Anthony case:

casey anthony forensic report casey anthony witness report casey anthony search warrant casey anthony document
Forensic Report
Witness Report
Search Warrant
Search Warrant

Casey Anthony

Click to see Casey Anthony in Court

See Also:

next: Mom Publicly Admits That She Never Loved Her Daughter
66 comments so far | Post a comment now
Traci January 23, 2009, 3:01 PM

God Bless George Anthony. What Casey Anthony has done to George and his family, most of all, to sweet Caylee is absolutely horrid. On top of that, these people have to deal with these ugly facts for the rest of their lives. I can’t blame him for his attempt, I do wish him well and eventual peace in life.

007 January 23, 2009, 3:10 PM

I haven’t read that he actually got as far as “attempting” suicide. If it is true, what means did he “attempt” to commit suicide??

I wish him all the best…..

sunshine January 23, 2009, 3:11 PM

I new someone was going to break. And it does not suprise me that it was him. I really hope he tells all with the doctor(away from Cindy). Maybe then he can have some sort of peace. Like the saying”The truth shall set you free”

mommymot January 23, 2009, 3:19 PM

The pain must be unbelievable. The events alone could crush a man but with the added pressure of the media circus I am surprised it took this long for one of them to break. I know this case is interesting….I am kind of addicted but I feel guilty for my interest. How could I be interested in what is really just the PAIN of others? This is real life not Desperate Housewives.

Tee January 23, 2009, 3:21 PM

I hope Casey is satisfied now that she has destroyed her entire family….

maryann January 23, 2009, 3:26 PM

What terrible news, I feel so sorry for this man, so much to endure..I hope he gets the help he needs and thank GOD he was found, GOD knows what else couldve happened. Praying for you George

Tme January 23, 2009, 3:32 PM

Nothing is surprising or without some devious and manipulative spin in this case..not the least of which is that I suppose poor bereft, suicidal and mentally ill George, the only one who was willing to speak honestly about anything to the investigators or grand jury, is NOW immune no doubt, because of this trick….how pray tell…was he planning on killing himself at that motel?? drowning in the tub???

tracyintpa January 23, 2009, 3:32 PM

You know that George has known for a long time that Casey most likely killed that poor baby. And the news of late has just hit him too close to home. Its becoming obvious what his daughter has done to his baby granddaughter. Cindy may still be in denial, but George has faced the truth long ago IMO. I feel so badly for this poor man. He has to put up a brave front for his wife, and try to support her in her denial, but at the same time face what he knows in his heart is the awful, painful, hideous, unbelieveable truth. He has nobody to back him up, nobody to support him. He must feel terribly alone in this hell. I have nothing but compassion and sympathy for this tortured man.

byGodsgrace January 23, 2009, 3:36 PM

I fully agree with mommymot…it is interesting and I don’t even know why. I will continue to pray for George and his family. The path he is currently on has to be deeply painful. Most of our personal lives would make bad press.

Canada January 23, 2009, 3:59 PM

My heart goes out to George…….Cindy controlls him . If you sawthem on many shows on TV he could not reply to any question till Cindy OK’d it.The last one on Larry King showed everything. Cindy was stii saying ppl saw her. And as for Lee he blends in very well to the family. Someone said he maybe be Caylee father as Casy told one of her many boyfriends. This is the most disgusting story that ever hit the air waves.

kimberly January 23, 2009, 4:06 PM

For George to heal I pray…
But for him to heal within he will have to acknowledge and accept the truth that his own daughter killed his baby grandchild. No more of Cindy’s denial…Buck up George and gird yourself in truth and rightousness the battle has yet only begun…Caseys demon is hungry…

Sara Jane January 23, 2009, 4:07 PM

While the media has said ‘he is in a state of denial’, I think he has held himself together the most. Sure we have seen flashes of anger and glimpse of grief, but he has been a stone. As a former LEO he knew from the start, from the ‘smell’ in the car the truth – the truth that was too awful to fully conceive or bear. The harshest of lights have been shown into this family’s frame and the window is wide open for speculation, suspicion, and spiteful gossip. George, as a cornerstone in the family matrix, with all that the family has been through from – on his part: financial devastation, poor health, crumbling marriage and the family’s part: hidden pregnancy w/teen drop-out, the growing evidence that his daughter is a thief and habitual liar and then the most recent of events: the homicide of his grandchild, his stone shield has finally cracked under the weight of the mounting evidence that his daughter is a sociopath who is morally, legally, and physically is responsible for the death of his beloved Caylee. Again, I say this is all too tragic. But, I query – did we – in the blogging/media world – push this nut to crack?

Carole January 23, 2009, 4:13 PM

It is hard to imagine what George Anthony is going through, and I only feel sympathy and well wishes towards him.
The thought of your granddaugther being murdered and having the ability to read all the documents released in this case, and the guilt he must feel that somehow he could have prevented this (even though he may not have been able to, he must have the question going through his mind of “what could I have done, why didn’t I see this coming?”) must be unbearable. I think George also believes that Casey killed Caylee, but was trying to be there for Cindy, who went on a media blitz to try to convince the public that Caylee was still alive, because who wants to believe that your daughter could kill your granddaughter?
My heart goes out to George Anthony. I hope God gives him the strength to endure and make it through the trial, the aftermath of the trial, and the rest of his days with the guilt, misplaced or not, that he must be feeling that he produced the kind of daughter he did.

007 January 23, 2009, 4:20 PM

Sara Jane,
I, for one, feel like many in the media have been very cruel, mainly for ratings.. Addtionally, I have popped in on a different site, from time to time, and viewed, IMO — needless bashing.. just over the edge needless stuff. It is not productive at all. All of this is hard enough… many people make it worse.

knarahs January 23, 2009, 4:22 PM

God bless George. I think George finally admitted to himself that his daughter was, indeed, responsible for his granddaughter’s death. Back in July, he said he couldn’t bring himself to even consider such a possibility, and I believe he finally sees that and is now beating himself up wondering if he could have prevented this in any way. If I could I would tell George he was in NO WAY responsible, and I doubt that anyone could have forseen this happening — like he said in July — its just too horrible to imagine. It was almost painful to watch George struggle to remain supportive of Casey while incriminating evidence continued to mount. I would also like to tell George tell him its okay to continue to love Casey — even after admitting to himself she may have caused Caylee’s death. You can love somone while abhorring their actions - “hate the sin, love the sinner.” God Bless you George, I’ll keep praying for you.

Surefooted_1 January 23, 2009, 4:59 PM

I read some of the documents recently released. Casey actually referred to her imaginery nanny as zanny or zaneado months before she met the actual zaneada gonzales at the sawgrass apartment. She came up with her imaginery zanny before she conducted those internet searches. I think she planned to murder Caylee a year in advance.

SilB January 23, 2009, 5:35 PM

This story is incredibly sad. This must be like a nightmare to this family. I really feel for them. It does not surprise me that it came down to this.

anon January 23, 2009, 6:17 PM

I think this entire family is incredibly odd. George and Cindy seem off to me. I believe George knows more then he has shared and could no longer live with himself.

I hope Casey gets what she deserves and Caylee will finally be laid to rest in peace. Then I hope that all of these people go away and do some serious praying.

Natalia January 23, 2009, 6:33 PM

This situation is sad. I don’t believe in my heart that the family was consciously hiding anything. Denial is a powerful thing. It allows you cope with a truth that you cannot face. Even when your logical mind & common sense tells you one thing, good old denial can override all that. I was raped in college and actually convinced myself that it didn’t even happen for a very long time. In their case, the only way to accept the fact that Caylee was dead (before the body was found) would also mean accepting that their own daughter killed her. That’s a double blow that most of us never have and never will have to deal with (thank God). I remember the one of first visits with Lee and Casey at the jail and he was asking all those questions, trying to get information. For some reason, that made me think of my own brother. I know that in my brother’s “logical mind” he would have known that my story didn’t make sense and chances weren’t good, but he would still have tried because he would want to have hope…hope that his niece is alive and hope that his sister is not a killer. I guess I have just looked at the family differently than most during this ordeal. They are the ones that I have felt for the most because they truly are involved on all levels (physically, emotionally, etc.). Although we have been touched deeply by this story, we don’t know these people and although they have frustrated me at times, I have chosen to not judge them. The thing about people like Casey is that you almost have to humor them and wade through all of their lies in order to eventually get to the truth. Each time ppl like Casey are backed into a corner, they are just going to come up with another lie, even if it doesn’t make any sense and even if it defies all logic. Eventually she’ll wear down, but “backing her into a corner”, showing concrete, evidence, etc. will not do it. To end, it is no wonder that Mr. Anthony is suicidal. I think that the media, bloggers, etc. have been way to involved in this situation and eventually anyone would break. It is very difficult being in the public eye, even when you choose to be. Their every move, word, sneeze, etc. is debated on talkshows, the internet, newspapers, magazines, etc. Please, let’s just give them some peace. These people are in MOURNING and they have feelings just like everyone else.

michelle January 23, 2009, 6:51 PM

George did NOT try to kill his self. And honestly I do not think he ever even considered it! Yes, he sent messages and his lawyer called the police but I think its George and Cindys way of adding more drama to the story, adding more value to their story to sell once this is all over.

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