Thursday, November 19, 2009

Rudy Guede Appeal: Meredith Family’s Lawyer Very Disappointed At “Lost Last Chance”

Posted by Peter Quennell


Mr Maresca sounds intensely frustrated at what might have been. 

Here was a chance to put this whole thing to rest with a single truth and an act of real contrition and compassion to Meredith’s family - and Rudy really blew it.

“He could have saved her. He could have acted to save her, then he wouldn’t be here asking forgiveness….  Requests for pardon are always welcome, however, in a civilised country. I think that a positive reaction would have at least led to an immediate intervention, if what Rudy said was true.”

Not surprisingly, the lawyers for Knox and Sollecito are critical of Rudy Guede for not letting their clients off the hook - though he really no further implicated the defendants than he did back at his own trial.

His recent mysterious and unprovoked beating-up in his prison may have had an influence on his frame of mind in court today. Amazing though, as the defense teams incessantly paint him as the lone wolf perpetrator (a theory Judge Micheli discounted at great length) which we know burns him up.

Our poster Tiziano kindly translated this final report on the day from Il Messagero. The article is an update of an earlier report.

REOPENING OF DEBATE REJECTED.

The Appeal Court of the Assizes of Perugia has rejected the request of Rudy’s defence lawyers for the partial reopening of the debate.

PG: ACCOUNT NOT CREDIBLE.

According to the Prosecutor General, what Rudy said was a “little tale which was not credible”. According to the PG a “progression of lesions” was found on Kercher’s body, and death came in a much longer time than what Guede indicated.

PG: NO GENERAL REMISSIONS.

Guede was condemned to thirty years imprisonment on October 28th, 2008 by Perugia GUP Paoli Micheli. His defence lawyers, Walter Biscotti and Nicodemo Gentile, have appealed against this sentence. In fact the Ivorian has always maintained that he had nothing to do with the murder.

The Prosecutor has not contested the sentencing report, which actually accepted the reconstruction made by the first stage prosecutors PMs Manuela Comodi and Giuliano Mignini.

Today PG Catalani in his summing-up spoke of “full involvement in all the activities to the damage of Meredith Kercher” on Guede’s part.. Moreover, he underlined that the accused should not be conceded general remissions “because he has made no contribution at all in clarifying what happened in the crime house when Meredith was killed”.

KERCHER LAWYER: HE COULD HAVE SAVED HER

“He could have saved her. He could have acted to save her, then he wouldn’t be here asking forgiveness,” replied Francesco Maresca, the lawyer for the civil claim of the family of Meredith Kercher, to Rudy Guede’s words which he asked him to pass on to the relations of the English student killed in Perugia.

“Requests for pardon are always welcome, however, in a civilised country,” he added. “I think that a positive reaction would have at least led to an immediate intervention, if what Rudy says is true,” Maresca added.

However the lawyer talked about a “lost last chance” on the part of the Ivorian to clarify what happened in Via della Pergola. He continued “His words seemed prepared to me.”

And in court, referring to the fact that Guede claimed to have run away in fear, Maresca affirmed,“We ought to think of the fear suffered by Meredith.” As far as the summing up of the PG, the lawyer defined it as “absolutely exact”.

KNOX DEFENCE: GUEDE’S WORDS IRRELEVANT FOR AMANDA

The spontaneous statement made by Guede is “absolutely irrelevant to the position of Amanda Knox.” Luciano Ghirga, one of the defence lawyers for the American said this. “I’m talking with absolute respect about the position of Rudy Guede and his defence - Ghirga underlined - but when he had the opportunity to respond in cross-examination between the parties, in a hearing in front of the world, he refused. I consider his position to be self-serving.”

Then the Lawyer claimed that in the first stage trial of Knox and Raffaele Sollecito “neither the five interrogations of Guede nor his first stage sentencing report are part of the trial, and much less so can his spontaneous statements of today be considered.”

SOLLECITO’S LAWYER: GUEDE HAS LOST A CHANCE

Rudy Guede “has lost the opportunity to tell the truth”, according to lawyer Luca Maori, one of the defence for Raffaele Sollecito, the young man accused of the crime together with his ex-girlfriend Amanda Knox (the summing-up of the PM in the first stage of their trial is on the agenda for Friday) and the same Ivory Coast man.

“Guede continues the old stereotype - Maori said further - according to which he doesn’t know the male person present in the crime house, even though he saw his face. But it is necessary for everyone, and especially for him, to finally tell the truth and to assume his responsibility before the Kercher family.”

 

Mr Maori’s words at bottom above are very curious - perhaps they are quoted out of context. He’s presumably inferring that Guede should have pointed AWAY from Raffaele Sollecito, his client, and instead toward a mysterious missing Person X.

If so, invoking the best interest of Meredith’s family here seems pretty vile - even for a hard-pressed defense lawyer. He should not be denying their true justice. 


Posted by Peter Quennell on 11/19/09 at 04:12 PM in Trials 2008 & 2009Guede appeals

Comments

indeed, disappointing, but unfortunately not unexpected. my thoughts are with the kerchers as they try to find answers.

Posted by mojo on 11/19/09 at 04:55 PM | #

I think the fact that Rudy did not come clean shows that he played more than just a minor role in this crime and that he was directly responsible for Meredith’s murder, in addition to Knox and Sollecito.  He already has 30 years, so nothing to lose at this point, why not tell the truth if it would reduce your sentence, not to mention bring some much needed closure to the Kerchers (he obviously does not care about them!)?

The truth is that the truth of Guede’s role that night is not pretty at all, and thus, it would not help him any to tell it.  That’s why he continues telling this piece of fiction.  His image is obviously the most important thing to him right now.  He is so deluded.  His story would be more believable without the part of having an arranged meeting with Meredith and moving onto a consensual romantic encounter.  THAT is what makes it so unbelievable.  Meredith had a new boyfriend, and from her conversation with Knox earlier on the day of the murder, we know that she saw cheating in a very negative light. 

Why does Rudy think that this story is believable?  If he is guilty of sexual assault, but not murder, wouldn’t it help him to come clean?  Of course the sexual assault was a horrific crime and he should still receive just punishment, but wouldn’t that get him a few years off his sentence?  Is he really that self-absorbed that he doesn’t even want to admit to a “lesser” (if there is such a thing in this case) role in the crime, or is the truth that he, along with the others, did indeed murder Meredith.  Unfortunately, I am really starting to think it is the latter.  He will probably not ever tell the truth.

Posted by chira385 on 11/19/09 at 05:23 PM | #

It seems to me that, oddly enough, Rudy’s rather absurd clinging to the unlikely story of a “date” with Meredith supports the idea of a lesser involvement in her murder. He keeps fighting the rape charge because that is the crime of which he is specifically, personally, guilty.  And his clinging to the tissue of lies about it shows that it is the charge he is most concerned with.

The evidence shows he was physically intimate with her, and no one believes she would have in any way consented to it.  He may have been involved in planning what would happen in the sexual assault, or he may have only taken advantage of a chaotic situation. Perhaps he may even in some deluded part of his mind actually believe he had some connection with his victim. But this part of the whole sorry catastrophe is where he has most focused on explaining his actions and telling a story to defend himself.

It isn’t convincing, of course, and even if it were, it is not enough. No matter whether he was actually hands-on involved in the killing or not,  his ensuing failure to get help—and he couldn’t call for help because he would be caught red-handed for the rape - that failure to intervene to save Meredith led to her death. Which makes him as guilty as if he had held the knife himself.

Posted by lauowolf on 11/19/09 at 08:23 PM | #

lauowolf wrote: “No matter whether he was actually hands-on involved in the killing or not, his ensuing failure to get help—and he couldn’t call for help because he would be caught red-handed for the rape - that failure to intervene to save Meredith led to her death. Which makes him as guilty as if he had held the knife himself.”

lauowolf, I couldn’t agree with you more. You have summed it up exactly as to why Rudy continues with his absurd lies.  Rudy is obviously lying every time he starts the story with the “date” info.  No one is buying it, especially not the judges.  They know that Rudy is lying just as they know that Knox and Sollecito are lying.  None of the three has any remorse or conscience.  No regard for the truth or for the Kerchers.  I am convinced that their sentences will reflect this.

Posted by jodyodyo on 11/19/09 at 08:51 PM | #

Perhaps the idea hinted at in the statement “His recent mysterious and unprovoked beating-up in his prison may have had an influence on his frame of mind in court today.” is the real reason he didn’t actually identify Raffaele by name in his testimony. Perhaps the beating was another attempt to make water run uphill and ensure that Rudy kept his mouth shut about the actual events of that horrible night.

Posted by beans on 11/19/09 at 09:18 PM | #

I agree with everyone here, especially Chira, that Rudy’s role here is looking bleaker and bleaker. It just beggars belief that he would still be protecting AK and RS. That means he’s protecting one person, namely himself.

By the way, today was the dance class that I dedicated to Meredith. Some of you had supported me (Chira and, I think, Hopeful), so I wanted to let you know how it went. Following is rather an extended account of it, and I hope this is OK as #1, I don’t know where else on this forum to put this and #2, I’m thinking about it now so I want to write it now. Meredith’s story inspired me in my selection of music, but I didn’t tell the class upfront although I put out a picture of Meredith with her dates and some quotes about grief under it. When one of the first songs was playing, Enya’s May It Be, one of the ladies, whose own son had tragically committed suicide, said that a group of parents who have lost children that she belongs to, will be using this song at their annual Christmas memorial for their children.

Toward the end of class there was an interesting happening. I had finally told them briefly how Meredith had inspired my selections for today’s music, held up the picture of her, and instructed on the next song, ‘Heaven’ a rather pretty song by Hayley Westenra, that the dancers try to express their ideas of heaven in the dance. Toward the end, one of our more experienced dancers got us all into a circle of hands, saying ‘after all, heaven will be about communion and community’ or something like that. And so we all danced in a circle. It was quite moving. At the end one of the women said something like ‘now we can all have pizza’ - which I think was a reaction to the circle shape we were in, but also just as something people do in a group. It was eerie for me, knowing that pizza was Meredith’s last meal. It seemed almost mystical to me.

Then, we did the final dance, which was to ‘Dante’s Prayer’ by Loreena McKennitt, which is a gorgeous spiritual song. The dancers seemed inspired. These dancers can relate well at times, but we seemed to jump a few levels into another region of relatedness and attunedness in that dance as we danced around and among each other, touching and leaning on each other in a way that was more intimate than we’ve ever experienced. I am so glad I dedicated this class to Meredith. It was a wonderful experience, especially knowing how she loved to dance as a child too.

For anyone who might be interested, here’s the listing of the songs we danced to: May It Be (Enya/Lord of the Rings soundtrack); Here, There & Everywhere (Beatles/played by Trio Rococo); Brave (J-Lo); When Irish Eyes Are Smiling (because Meredith always seemed to be smiling); Heaven Is the Face (Steven Curtis Chapman’s song about the tragic recent death of his 5-year-old child Maria); Some Children See Him (George Winston); Signore, Ascolte! (Puccini/Kiri Te Kanawa, as tribute to Meredith’s love of Italy); Heaven (Hayley Westenra); Dante’s Prayer (Loreena McKennitt).

Also on the CD I prepared, inspired by MK but unable to be used because of time constraints, were: Moonshadow (Cat Stevens); And I Love Her and Blackbird (more Trio Rococo Beatles renditions); Canto d’Anime and O Mio Babbino Caro (Kiri Te Kanawa); Songbird (Eva Cassidy, a wonderful singer who also died too young); Indian Ocean (Yusuf Islam aka Cat Stevens, about the 2004 Tsunami in which a young girl is rescued by a vacationing British couple); Meggie’s Theme (Mancini & Galway); and Across the Universe of Time (Hayley Westenra).

Well, thanks for letting me go on (and on, and on… LOL) about the dance class. Under Meredith’s picture, I added these quotes:

‘Death leaves a heartache no one can heal, Love leaves a memory no one can steal.’ -From an Irish headstone

‘The deep pain that is felt at the death of every friendly soul arises from the feeling that there is in every individual something which is inexpressible, peculiar to him (or her) alone, and is, therefore, absolutely and irretrievably lost.’ -Arthur Schopenhauer

‘The caterpillar dies so the butterfly could be born. And, yet, the caterpillar lives in the butterfly and they are but one. So, when I die, it will be that I have been transformed from the caterpillar of earth to the butterfly of the universe.’ -John Harricharan

Meredith, it seems to me, is now for all of us the ‘butterfly of the universe.’ Meredith: In memoria, con la speranza di pace.

Posted by Earthling on 11/20/09 at 10:13 AM | #

I’m glad I’ve recounted that tribute to Meredith. However, as her parents have pointed out, we really must get through the last push here to get these defendants convicted before we can honor Meredith as just a person not a victim or news item.

So, back to the trial… There was another absolutely horrendous article on CNN.com today:

http://edition.cnn.com/2009/WORLD/europe/11/19/italy.kercher.trial/

There are numerous inaccuracies, in addition to a definite slant toward the defense and that dishonest broker Anne Bremner.

Here’s one whopper: The morning after the murder, AK and RS “went back to the house” and “Knox says she was unable to gain entry, and so she called police.” Um, CNN, actually she said the door was open, and the demonstrable fact is that neither she nor Raffaele called the police before they showed up with regard to the found cell phones. Then they _called the police WHILE the postal police were there_!!! I mean, does that make ANY sense to anyone? Oh gee, the police are here, let’s call the police! Wow, if that doesn’t scream some sort of sick alibi-seeking behavior, I don’t know what does.

The rest of the article goes on to disparage the few incriminating facts they mention, while failing to mention the rest of the mountain of incriminating facts in the case. I guess another phone call of complaint to CNN is in order! Although I wonder if it will do any good. They seem firmly in the Knox-Mellas camp - God knows why.

OK, so I made the call. If anyone wants to call as well, the number is 404-827-2300. This is actually the number to tour the CNN studios (?), but you can click through the menu to get to the comments line.

Posted by Earthling on 11/20/09 at 11:37 AM | #

11/21/09

Thank you so much, Earthling! Your dance and music memorial to Meredith was glorious! Thank you for details: the pizza remark, the circle dance, Hayley Westenra’s “Heaven.”

THANK YOU!

Posted by Hopeful on 11/21/09 at 08:32 PM | #

Earthling, thanks for the recap of the dance class!!! It sounded like a beautiful time and what a wonderful way to remember and honor Meredith!  Especially liked the pizza comment! I hadn’t heard of Hayley Westenra before, so I checked her out…WOW - beautiful voice and songs!  I am so glad that everything was a success!  I am sure Meredith would have loved it.
: )

Posted by chira385 on 11/22/09 at 03:00 AM | #

Thanks, Chira and Hopeful, and also for your music suggestions! I know one of you had suggested Jewel, and I did mean to put her song Hands in there somewhere. I think that would have been a nice one. And yes that pizza comment was rather intense…and I don’t think that woman knew anything about the case (if she had, it would have been crass and she didn’t seem like a crass person).

Overall, I enjoyed focusing entirely on Meredith for a morning and forgetting about the way in which she went from among us. I look forward with anticipation to the day that justice is served and, as her family says, we can remember Meredith not as a victim but as the wonderful, creative, warm, talented, and beautiful person that she was.

Posted by Earthling on 11/23/09 at 07:19 PM | #

I have a question regarding the future Knox/Sollecito appeals.  Is it likely that they will admit more evidence, perhaps that wasn’t included in the original trial, or is the Italian appeal system more likely to work with only the existing material that was originally presented? 

For some reason, as I have read so much about the trial and evidence, I am thinking that somewhere I read that some smaller items of evidence were not presented.

I guess I am an optimist, but I am still saying prayers that the knife used (besides the kitchen knife already presented) will be found and presented with the supporting DNA evidence so as to close the mouths of the Knox PR campaign, et al.

Posted by Mo-in-Mass.,USA on 01/02/10 at 03:13 PM | #

Hi Mo-In-Mass. Good question. The kind of thing Commisario and Nicki post here so well on! Ad-interim, I would offer two points.

First, the judges’ voluminous report on the evidence and reasoning due out latest early March (which we will translate and post-from very speedily) could come as a huge surprise to those who dont speak Italian, havent read all of Micheli, and continue to argue that the evidence was limited, tendentious, or marginal.

The evidence really was extensive here, and the multiple-alibi, clean-up, and mobile-phone-record evidence remained absolutely undented. The police made some mistakes, but even in the US that is not unknown (!) and good convictions still happen. And the notion that a prosecutor has hoodwinked his co-prosecutor and half of Italy or that the Italian system is saving face is really quite farcical.

Second, the appeals judge will above all be working from that report. If he or she thinks there are huge gray areas, then they might allow in some new testimony. I believe Commisario thinks (as in the Guede appeal) that that is pretty unlikely to happen.

Commisario has already posted here that completely successful appeals in Italy (where the defendant walks) are really quite rare (15% at most) but that reductions in sentence for one reason or another are somewhat more common.

It is possible that the defense teams turn up at appeal now with the argument that they were on drugs or are charming psychopaths, while in effect admitting that they were in some sense involved. Those positions could change the nature of the sentences.

Posted by Peter Quennell on 01/02/10 at 06:03 PM | #

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