Why Knox’s Damning Last Live TV Interview Was Attacked And Labeled “Controversial”
Posted by Chimera
1. Overview Of This Post
This is the complete 22 minute video of the interview Knox did with Chris Cuomo on 7 May 2014.
Chris Cuomo asked some excellent questions. CNN itself quickly put online a video of some clips lasting 2 1/2 minutes. On 22 May Vivianna posted an analysis: “The Cuomo Interview: Why This May Be The Last Time Knox Tries To Argue Innocence On TV.”
In her post Vivianna clarified the 2 types of innocence (factual v.s. legal), and found it bizarre that Knox focused exclusively on the ‘legal’ argument. It was a wonderful piece, very sound scientifically, and very compelling.
The full interview (see above and this transcript) makes more understandable why Cuomo was angrily attacked online for asking “unfair questions” on subjects normally off-limits. It really rattled some cages.
I show here why, and how it could have rattled even more cages, by highlighting the insights that leaked out barely noticed, and the opportunities missed for many tougher questions.
2. Analysis Of The Full Interview
In the 2 1/2 minute clip Cuomo looked like a bit of a wimp. But in the full interview, he is actually pretty aggressive in pushing back against Knox’s attempts at convincing answers.
While I am still a bit disappointed that Cuomoe seems to back off from the really tough questions (see below) and like Diane Sawyer seems to be lacking in many of the hard facts (see below) this is definitely a more revealing picture than the short video.
At no time, does Amanda ever say, ‘‘I DIDN’T KILL MEREDITH’‘. And for someone giving a truthful answer, she has to pause and think far too often.
Below are excerpts from the CNN with my own commentary:
Chris Cuomo starts with a brief narrative about the case, and says the police immediately zeroed in on Knox. He cotinues:
1) Not because of witnesses or forensics….
2) She wasn’t distraught enough….
3) She kissed her then boyfriend Raffaele Sollecito outside the crime scene….
4) She did yoga in the police station….
5) Soon the media would come up with a persona… Foxy Knoxy
6) It was the stuff of tabloid headlines
7) It was also, as many would argue, the prosecution’s entire case
8) Despite this, Knox and Sollecito were convicted in 2009
9) It was another 2 years before another court cited lack of objective evidence
10) Last year,  a new trial was ordered.
11) The appeals court convicted Knox again, but based on a new motive
12) There were multiple assailants, and 2 knives and Knox delivered the fatal blow
13) All of this is based on the only person [Guede] whose DNA is all over the crime scene
14) Due to a quirk in the Italian legal system, Guede is due to be released this year, after less than 6 years in jail
An okay attempt, but something of a shortfall. Here is my corrected version of Chris Cuomo’s narrative.
- 1a) Well, perhaps they zeroed in on her after she wrote statements placing herself at the scene
2a) She wasn’t distraught? Well, her friend f***ing bled to death, but shit happens, let’s get on with life
3a) She did a lot more than just kiss
4a) She only did the splits, not the cartwheel, remember?
5a) The name Foxy Knoxy was her childhood soccer name, which she kept for other reasons.
6a) Yes, thanks dad, I needed the publicity
7a) Actually, the prosecution spent time arguing a pattern of lying, no alibi, partial confession, forensic evidence ....
8a) No, they were convicted in 2009, because of the exact opposite of what you argued.
9a) While this is actually true, Chris neglects to explain why this first appeal was annulled.
10a) It was not a new trial, but a redo of the appeal against the 2009 Massei conviction.
11a) Nencini did not reconvict, he ‘‘confirmed’’ Massei, and motive had little to do with it.
12a) Chris sees to be implying, as this came after ‘‘changed motive’’ that these facts changed as well. However, Massei believed as well there were multiple attackers, 2 knives, and Knox killed Meredith.
13a) Judges and prosecutors believed next to nothing of what Guede said. Only Guede’s DNA? Amanda’s and Meredith’s DNA was mixed in several places. Raffaele’s DNA is on Meredith’s bra clasp
14a) The ‘‘quirk’’ is the short form trial, which got Guede a reduced sentence. And while ‘‘eligible’’ for day release, it is not the same as ‘‘due for release’‘. November 2007 to late 2014 is 7 years, Chris, not 6.
(2:45) Cuomo: What surprised you in the reasons?
(2:55) Knox: I think what surprised me the most is how the court has attempted to account for exonerating evidence. That is really surprising to me. It’s not surprising that they place so much emphasis on circumstantial evidence, as opposed to objective forensic evidence. And I’m really disappointed about that, because the circumstantial clues have all been equivical, have been unreliable, whereas forensic evidence that proves what happened that night in the room is there. (odd smile) It is available to be understood. And that continues to be an incredibly difficult obstacle that I’m having to confront, in proving my innocence.
Is the court allowed to consider circumstantial evidence like phone records, lying, and no alibi? No, they are circumstantial.
What about bloody footprints and mixed blood? They are objective. No they may be in the house, but they are not in the murder room.
What about your shoeprint and Raffaele’s DNA in the murder room? No, it is contaminated.
But isn’t Rudy Guede’s handprints, shoeprints and DNA in the murder room? Yes, and it proves my innocence.
I actually think Amanda Knox would make a great lawyer (for all the wrong reasons).
(3:50) Cuomo: Why do you think this judge goes further than any other, that only that you had it because of DNA around the hilt, but that he thinks that you are the one who actually killed Meredith Kercher?
(4:08) Knox: (smiles) I believe, I mean, I can’t speculate what this judge’s motivations are, personal motivations or otherwise. But what I can say is that, as this case has progressed, the evidence the prosecution has claimed exists against me has been proven less and less and less. And all that has happened is that they fill these holes with speculation.
Yes Judge Nencini holds some personal grudge…. Granted you have never actually met, but maybe he was just miffed you sent an email and hit the talk show circuit rather than attend your own appeal.
Or maybe there is some hard truth in that 350 page report he wrote up.
(4:47) Knox: I did not kill my friend. I did not wield a knife. (for emphasis), I had no reason to. In the month that we were living together we were becoming friends. A week before the murder we went to a classical music concert together. Like we had never fought. And the idea .... I mean, he’s brought up lots of things, crazy motives,
So it takes her a minute to deny killing ‘her friend’, who may or may not be Meredith. And she didn’t kill ‘her friend’ as she says she and Meredith were ‘becoming friends’ Um…. would you kill ‘your friend’ if you had ‘a reason to’?
(5:15) Cuomo: He [Nencini] doesn’t agree with anything you’re saying with regard to the relationship. (Amanda nods). This judge believes that this fight was about money, and that you stole money from your roommate, and that this is what started this violent night. Is there truth to that?
You aren’t sure if you stole money from Meredith?
(5:30) Knox: (pausing to think) Absolutely not. He is getting this from Rudy Guede, who is coming up with these sorts of things for self interest. And the truth of the matter is:... one, I had no criminal record, so I am not the type of person who is going to violently kill someone… (pauses) ... for any reason. And furthermore, I had saved up to go to Italy, and was not in need of stealing any money, unlike Rudy Guede, who was a known thief, who is a known burglar, who did this on a regular basis to survive. And why they would think I (points to herself) was a thief, when in Meredith’s own purse, there was Rudy Guede’s fingerprints…. it’s based on nothing.
Amanda has to think to herself before denying it. And she says that she is not the type to violently kill (is there another type?) but doesn’t say she didn’t do it.
And you don’t have to be a career criminal to commit murder. Many killers are first timers.
(6:18) Cuomo: To step through what he [Nencini] sees as the fact pattern for that night, and literally, it reads like a yes/no list.
(6:30) Cuomo: Were you and your boyfriend hanging outside the piazza that night?
Cuomo: Did you let Rudy Guede into your apartment?
Cuomo: Were you with Rudy Guede in your apartment that night?
Cuomo: Was there a fight over money with Meredith Kercher, witnessed by Rudy Guede?
(7:00) Cuomo: The judge believes the only way he could have gotten in is with keys. He throws out the possibility that there was a break in through the window, that was found in the home you shared. Why do you think he dismisses that possibility as orchestrated?
Chris, you could of course just read the report…
(7:10) Knox: I mean again, why he [Nencini] thinks it? What I can say is that Rudy Guede is a known burglar (pauses) who broke into houses and offices through second story windows, having thrown a rock, carrying a knife, and that these all resembled everything that happened in our apartment. So, why this judge thinks it’s impossible just doesn’t make sense to me.
Except the sexually assaulted and murdered woman .... For my curiousity, where were all these other supposed burglaries?
The judge may think the theory possible, if not for all the evidence that contradicts it.
(7:38) Cuomo: Your roommate said you had a strained relationship. Now that’s a bad fact as we call it in the law. Why would your roommates lie about the relationship between you and Meredith?
(7:49) Knox: They said that we weren’t hanging out as much at the time when the murder occurred. But that was only because I had gotten a job. Meredith’s British friends suggested that maybe Meredith was a little uncomfortable about certain issues about hygiene, but (looks angry), these were not issues that were ever going to lead to any kind of violence. They never ... led to any aggressive communication between us. That never happened.
Sexually assaulting and stabbing is ‘‘aggressive communication’’ now? Wow, interesting use of the English language. And yes you got a job,at Patrick’s bar. But wasn’t it about to go to Meredith?
(8:22) Cuomo: The judge believes that there were 3 people who did this. The said the blood is suggestive of it, that Rudy Guede had free hands. And it he had free hands, he must not have been alone. That the DNA evidence from Raffaele Sollecito is there on the clasp, and that shows that he was trying to take off her clothes or manipulate her somehow. (Knox nods) And that there had to be a third person. And the DNA of footprints that he believes are yours and your boyfriend’s prove that there were three of you in the room that night. Why is he wrong?
For someone who maintains the ‘‘no evidence’’ line, Knox is nodding through much of this.
(8:53) Knox: Well, um, let’s break that down. We have a bra clasp that independent court experts have claimed is not reliable because it was collected 46 days after the crime scene had been gone through by the CSI’s of Italy. And after police had tromped through it and basically completely destroyed that scene. That is not a reliable piece of evidence. Then we have the idea that Rudy Guede would not have been able to attack Meredith because someone had to hold her down.
Amanda, you didn’t address the footprints… And again C&V were not independent nor reliable…. And you know the CSIs compromised the scene how….
(9:35) Knox: first of all, the weapon that they claimed is the murder weapon, is not the murder weapon.
To ask the obvious question - how does she know more than her lawyers and the police? You’d almost think she was there.
(9:45) Knox: An athletic male, armed with a knife ... to overpower a young woman, that happens every day, in this world, and I don’t think that is impossible to be what happened to Meredith.
True, it may not be ‘impossible to be what happened’, but she is not insisting that ‘is’ what happened.
(10:00) Cuomo: and your saying to me tonight is that it is impossible that you were in the room that night, you had a knife in your hand, and that you helped Meredith Kercher?
Odd for an investigative role. He asks if it was impossible, but avoids directly asking if she did it
(10:06) Knox: Absolutely, because my DNA, any trace of me, is not there…. when your talking about traces of me, that they’re attributing to the crime scene, they’re talking about DNA in my own bathroom
Again, Knox goes straight for the ‘‘the evidence is not there’’ argument, rather than directly saying she was not involved in Meredith’s murder. Also, this may be the first time she has acknowledged the bathroom is part of the crime scene. Yay….?
(10:30) Knox: ...or my footsteps which tested negative for blood, that had mine and Meredith’s DNA on the floor between our bedrooms and the bathrooms. Of course our DNA was there, we lived there for a month, it was there. It tested negative for blood, so it wasn’t blood. And so it’s irrelevant to the crime. But we’re talking about the crime that happened in Meredith’s bedroom.
Here Knox is making a strawman argument, saying that the hallway is irrelevant. Odd, considering that unless ‘‘Spiderman’’ Guede would have to have gone through the hallway unless he jumped out the window.
Also curious that (if my understanding is right), it was the shape of the footprints the the hall, and not necessarily DNA itself which was introduced.
Yes, the crime itself happened in Meredith’s room, but the luminol did reveal footprints in the hallway, and there was mixed blood in the bathroom. Is Knox just scatterbrained in this interview, of being deliberately deceptive?
(10:43) If Rudy Guede committed this crime, which he did, we know that because his DNA is there, on Meredith’s body, his handprints and footprints in her blood. None of that exists for me. And if I were there, I would have had traces of Meredith’s broken body on me, and I would have left traces of myself… around Meredith’s corpse.
Wasn’t Sollecito’s bloody footprint on the bathroom mat a major piece against him? Was there not Knox’s DNA (mixed with Meredith) in the bathroom and in Filomena’s room? Was a size 37 woman’s shoeprint not found in the room?
Odd, that Knox’s DNA is in her apartment, which she lived in, but not a single fingerprint…. You know Rudy Guede committed the crime strictly because this DNA, handprints and footprints are there… but logically, the same types of evidence don’t count against you and Raffaele? “If Guede killed Meredith”? You know something we don’t?
(11:15) Knox: And I am not there, and that proves my innocence
Yes, Amanda, but were you really there?
(11;20) Cuomo: Those are the big points this judge makes. There are others, and there is also another man who judged you before, he wants to weigh in, and we have a statement from him.
(11:38) Cuomo: The appeals court judge who set Amanda free says the appellate court’s ruling against her is more worthy of a Hollywood movie set, than a courtroom. In a statement obtained exclusively by CNN, retired judge Claudio Hellmann says:
THE FLORENCE APPEALS COURT HAS WRITTEN A SCRIPT FOR A MOVIE OR THRILLER BOOK WHILE IT SHOULD HAVE CONSIDERED ONLY THE FACTS AND EVIDENCE. THERE IS NO EVIDENCE TO CONDEMN KNOX AND SOLLECITO. IT’S A VERDICT, THAT SEEMS TO ME IS THE RESULT OF FANTASY AND HAS NOTHING TO DO WITH THE EVIDENCE.
Claudio, after the way your ruling was trashed by Cassation, you are not really one to give a professional opinion on this. Zanetti neither.
(12:15) Cuomo: Obviously words of comfort to you. What does it mean to hear that from a now retired judge?
Interesting, no complaints are made about Hellmann giving these statements, but Nencini gets a formal complaint for commenting about not severing the appeals?
(12:19) Knox: It gives me a lot of hope. He did the right thing. He appointed independent experts, he looked at the forensic evidence, the objective evidence, he didn’t give more weight to equivocal and unreliable circumstantial clues than needed to be.
Hope, but for the wrong reasons. C&V were not really independent witnesses. Appellate level judges were not supposed to hire experts. Cassation criticised just this action.
Circumstantial evidence can very reliable, and very powerful. Didn’t give more weight to ‘unreliable circumstantial clues’? A judge should not give ANY weight to unreliable clues.
(12:46) Cuomo: However, the judge on top of him, Nencini, looked at what he did, dismisses it out of hand, almost as saying that is why he retired, just look at this decision, and he seems to believe, quote: ‘‘No alternative explanation is conceivable…. that is casting a tremendous amount of doubt on the story that you tell about what happened that night.
Chris gets some basic facts wrong. It is Cassation, not Nencini, who is on top. Nencini is simply another lower level appeal judge. It is not ‘‘almost as saying’’ why Hellmann retired, he WAS forced to retire
(13:10) Knox: This is not a complex case. It’s only complex when you try to find explanations ....
You are right. We should only explore simple solutions.
(13:30) Cuomo: .... that Rudy Guede had to have entered from use of your keys.
(13:34) Knox: That’s not true either. He had a history of breaking and entering second story windows, with rocks, carrying knives. Like, how is that impossible? There is a window below which he could have climbed up from. He was perfectly capable of doing that.
Technically, Knox is right. She could have just left the door unlocked. So Rudy has a type, second story, with rocks and knives? Interesting…
Wait, didn’t I just hear this identical argument just a few minutes earlier? Rehearse much, Mandy?
(13:55) Cuomo: ... [Nencini] believes the convicted killer more than you. What does that mean to you?
(14:02) Knox: (smiles) I don’t know. It’s definitely very disheartening. Because I don’t know (another smile). I’m sitting here having to prove my innocence. It is incredibly disheartening when Rudy Guede was found to be unreliable, when he found certainly to be Meredith’s rapist and killer, they would consider his testimony over mine. There’s no explanation for it, in my mind.
I can explain that. Judge Nencini (and Massei, and Micheli, and Cassation), think more than 1 person was involved.
(14:45) Cuomo: What does it lead you to believe that [Nencini] thinks about you, this judge, as a person?
(14:52) Knox: As a person, well, he says in his report that when the prosecutor describes me as a person who is capable of not only disturbing not only everyone around me, but getting drugged up and .... (shakes head) ... but I am not that person. And the evidence doesn’t show that.
Um…. didn’t your roommates and Meredith’s friends all testify to that being exactly the kind of person you are? The testimony of many witnesses is not evidence?
And while you may not be that person now, were you then?
(15:25) Cuomo: Another thing Judge Hellman says: I THINK THAT THE HIGH COURT WILL BE OBLIGED TO CONFIRM THE FLORENCE RULING IF THEY DON’T WANT TO OPENLY CONTRADICT THEIR COLLEAGUES.
This is idiotic, especially if Hellmann wanted to be taken seriously. The entire point of appeals is so that fresh eyes will review the work of the trial (or lower appellate level) judges, and make sure their findings, facts, logic, and procedures are sound. It would complete defeat the purpose of appeals if the higher court simply signed off on lower court rulings.
(15:37) Knox: (indignant sigh) He was willing to do it. So I have to believe there are authorities in Italy who will be sitting on that Supreme Court panel who will look at the facts of this case, and will do the same thing he did.
So, you are going to corrupt Cassation as well? F*** my life.
(16:00) Cuomo Do you believe you are haunted by first impressions? How you behaved in the aftermath, what they saw as antics….
(16:18) Knox: I think I’m haunted more by people’s projections of their ideas onto me than my own impressions on others, because there’s been an absurd focus on the hours, the seconds I spent outside of my house, of police’s testimony about what did or didn’t happen in the police office. I think it’s true that people seem to have had a kind of tunnel vision…. and that is something I’ve been having to fight against for a long time.
Considering her email to judge Nencini, I am not convinced she knows what projecting really is.
(17:08) Cuomo: Legally, there is only one more step [Cassation]. What do you plan to do to have this come out in your favour?
I have an idea. Perhaps, attend your appeal this time.
However, the answer was cut off by a commercial. Afterwards, it cuts to a clip of the interview of Knox and Cuomo from May 2013. It shows a few clips of Amanda pretending to cry, and repeating how she is afraid.
(18:02) Cuomo: Then you had the anticipation of what the ruling would be. Which was worse: the anticipation of it, or now knowing what the ruling is?
(18:15) Knox: I think it’s now knowing where it stands with the judges, because I had truly believed that this court was going to find me innocent. No new evidence had been presented. I did not expect this, (grimaces) and I’m incredibly hurt and disappointed to read what they’re saying is true but so clearly not. And I guess my only hope is that people are going to see all of the flaws that are throughout the entire document that justifies this verdict. This whole theory that I might somehow be involved in some way with Meredith’s murder is wrong.
You truly believed Nencini would find you innocent? But you skip the appeal and email saying you are afraid?! The horribly flawed document… were you referring to Hellmann’s by any chance?
You weren’t ‘somehow involved’ in ‘some way’. Judge Nencini ruled that you actually delivered the fatal blow
(19:08) Cuomo: You will appeal
Cuomo: You will stay here in the United States for the duration of the appeal?
Cuomo: What happens if the Supreme Court confirms this ruling? The case is closed, and you are guilty.
(19:25) Knox: (angry smile showing) from this whole experience, especially in prison, where you have to take everything day by day, now i’m having to take everything step by step. And if I think about everything that I could possibly be facing, it’s way to overwhelming for me to even conceive.
(19:50) Cuomo: Are you able to be present, or are you trapped in 2007?
(20:00) Knox: (smiles) it’s definitely a limbo (smiles again). My entire adult life has been weighed down by and overtaken by this tremendous mess, this, this, (shuts her eyes and grins slightly). On the one hand, I have my life in Seattle. I get to go to school. I get to be with my family and friends. And I’m so grateful to have them. They really helped me get through this. And know there are people who believe me. And on the other hand, there is this huge wait, this huge struggle, and trying to learn each step of the way, what’s so wrong and how I can fix it. And I guess I’m just one of the luck ones? (confused look).
(21:10) Knox: People have looked into my case. I’m not just a forgotten case.
That is totally true. Thanks to FOA and Dave Marriott, your case will never be forgotten.
(21:18) Cuomo: If the case is affirmed, and you are found guilty in final fashion, but the United States decides not to extradite, your life goes on, you can live in the United States, but will you ever really be free?
(21:35) Knox: Absolutely not. No, that is not a liveable ... especially since right now me and Raffaele are fighting together for our innocence. And like I said, I truly believe that it can happen. It’s only speculation that convicts us. It’s evidence that acquits us. And I’m holding firm in that what you’re suggesting might happen doesn’t.
Good luck with that one. You need to not leave so much out if there is a next time.
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