Meter Reader Receives $5,000 Reward in Casey Anthony Case

By Amy L. Edwards and Bianca Prieto | Sentinel Staff Writers
Posted January 16, 2009

The Orange County meter reader who found Caylee Marie Anthony's remains has received a $5,000 reward from a local lawyer.

Roy Kronk accepted a check from Mark NeJame, who formerly represented Caylee's grandparents, George and Cindy Anthony.

NeJame said he received $5,000 for his involvement in the case, and he felt it was right to give the money to Kronk.

"He had done something good. It was only appropriate to do something good back," NeJame said Thursday.

Kronk's attorney released a statement confirming the reward: "Roy is very thankful that Mark NeJame has recognized his singular efforts in finding Caylee and hopes that this sends a message to others that kindness does exist for people who do the right thing in life."

Sheriff's investigators recovered the toddler's bones last month after Kronk reported finding a skull in woods along Suburban Drive, a quarter-mile from the grandparents' home. He called several times in August to report seeing something suspicious in the woods, but deputies at the time found nothing.

In other developments Thursday:

*County officials released a jailhouse video of the Anthonys speaking with Caylee's mother, Casey Anthony, who is charged with killing the toddler. During the Aug. 14 visit, a month after her arrest in July, Casey Anthony tells her parents she is "an emotional wreck."

In the video, which shows the family members talking to each other by phone, Casey Anthony describes herself as frustrated and angry. She complains about not being in control or knowing what's going on.

"My entire life has been taken from me," she said.

Anthony told her mother she wants help from detectives but that the investigators need to help her, too.

"I'll try to help them in whatever way that I can, but if they come in here attacking me, they're not getting [anything]. I'm sorry," she said. "I need to be looked at as a victim . . . I'm just as much of a victim as the rest of you. And it hasn't been portrayed that way."

*Also, the Orange County Sheriff's Office reported that one patrol deputy who allegedly did not properly follow up one of Kronk's tips in August has been temporarily reassigned.

Deputy Richard Cain, 40, will work in the supply division, where employees inventory and sort supplies, until the Sheriff's Office's internal investigation is completed.

Cain has been criticized for how he handled Kronk's tip on Aug. 13. In an interview this week on ABC's Good Morning America, Kronk said the deputy who responded poked around with a metal stick, "swept his head back and forth and said, 'I don't see anything,' and pretty much, that was it."

Kronk didn't name the deputy. But a sheriff's official said Cain was the only deputy to respond in August when Kronk was at the site. As part of the reassignment, Cain must turn in his sworn credentials and agency-issued equipment, including badges, gun, patrol car and radio. Cain is not allowed to represent himself as an Orange County deputy in any way, including for off-duty work.

The Sheriff's Office did not say when its internal investigation will be completed.

Source: Orlando Sentinel