updated 10/17/2008 6:47:04 PM ET 2008-10-17T22:47:04

The mother of a missing 3-year-old Florida girl pleaded not guilty to charges that she killed her daughter.

Casey Anthony, 22, entered the plea Friday, three days after a grand jury indicted her on multiple charges. The charges against her: First-degree murder, aggravated child abuse, aggravated manslaughter and four counts of lying to investigators about the disappearance of her daughter, Caylee.

Caylee has not been seen since June, but wasn't reported missing until a month later.

She said she spent the next month trying to find her daughter and didn't call authorities because she was scared.

Investigators immediately started poking holes in her story. The apartment where Casey Anthony said she had left her daughter had been vacant for months, they said. They said she also lied when she told them she had been working at an area theme park as an event planner.

Her attorney, Jose Baez, didn't immediately return phone and e-mail messages Friday. Shortly before the indictment was issued Tuesday, he said he believed his client would be vindicated.

The case has captivated the Orlando suburb where the family lives, and teams of volunteers have looked for the doe-eyed child with brown hair and bangs for months.

In an interview Wednesday on the TODAY show, her grandmother said she believed the child was alive.

"I know Caylee is alive,” Cindy Anthony told TODAY’s Meredith Vieira. “I know my daughter. There is nothing in this world that could make me believe that Casey did anything to Caylee. There has never been any child neglect, child abuse or anything. This young lady loves her child, more than I love Casey."

Copyright 2008 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


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