Friday, March 11, 2011

Fifth Appeal Hearing: What Will Be On The Agenda Tomorrow In Court

Posted by Peter Quennell

Scheduled for tomorrow are seven witnesses for Sollecito’s defense, which is trying to prove that the eyewitness in the park, Mr Curatolo, got his dates wrong.

One of the ways in which Mr Curatolo identified the night on which he says he watched Knox and Sollecito sitting and talking in the park and periodically peering in the direction of the gate of Meredith’s house was by the presence of some buses.

They may have been the buses which climb up the very narrow Via Ulise Rocchi from the square to some clubs further up. However many, many other buses also pass through that square.

The defense hopes to land its first blow on the prosecution’s case by showing that on the night those nightclub buses weren’t there - that the clubs were closed that night for the holiday, and so the nightclub buses were nowhere to be seen.

Is this crucial? We think not. Mr Curatolo is useful in establishing a possible timeline for the night, but not for much more than that. The prosecution have never given the slightest hint that they believe anything like their whole case hangs on him.

And in Rudy Guede’s brief trial in October 2008 Judge Micheli accepted Mr Curatolo’s testimony as valid because he said he saw Knox and Sollecito on the night before all the police descended on Meredith’s house and the square.

Judge Micheli examines the evidence of Antonio Curatolo. He says that although Curatolo mixes up his dates in his statement, he does have a fix on the night he saw Amanda and Raffaele in Piazza Grimana sometime around 11:00 to 11:30pm. Curatolo is certain it was the night before the Piazza filled up with policemen asking if anyone had seen Meredith.

In his evidence, he says they came into the square from the direction of Via Pinturicchio and kept looking towards the cottage at Via della Pergola from a position in the square where they could see the entrance gate.

Judge Micheli reasons in his report that their arrival from Via Pinturicchio ties in with the evidence from Nara Capazzali that she heard someone run up the stairs in the direction of that street. He also reasons that they were likely watching the cottage to see if Meredith’s scream had resulted in the arrival of the police or other activity.

Acceptance of his testimony is already endorsed by two appeals courts, including the Supreme Court of Cassation, and all the decisions and all the evidence from all three courts now get ported into the Knox-Solleito appeal.

You can see photos of the square here and the view down to the gate of Meredith’s house here.


By Storm Roberts (Innai)

From what I have read of Mr. Curatolo’s evidence he was very clear that he was referring to the evening/night before the police and investigators in white overalls arrived in the area.

To my mind, his evidence is not key.  It helps to flesh out the case for the prosecution but is certainly no lynch pin.

I asked myself: “What if Mr. Curatolo did get the night wrong?” My only answer was to wonder why would Knox and Sollecito be hanging around the park in the late evening watching Knox’s own home on any night.  I can’t think of anything that isn’t nefarious.

Posted by Nolongeramember on 03/11/11 at 08:47 PM | #

Who are these seven witnesses? According to what I read from here, wasn’t Raphael waiting for a suitcase or a package and he missed it?

Posted by Barry on 03/12/11 at 03:07 AM | #

By Storm Roberts (Innai)


An acquaintence of Sollecito’s, Jovana Popovic, asked him for a lift to meet a bus (due to arrive at around midnight)so she could collect a suitcase her mother was sending her - Ms Popovic went to Sollecito’s flat at approximately 17.45 on 1st November to ask this favour.  She sees both Knox and Sollecito at the flat.

At approximately 20.40 she returned to Sollecito’s flat to tell him her mother had not sent the suitcase so she no longer needed a lift.  Knox opened the door to her, told her Sollecito was in the bathroom, and I don’t believe she saw Sollecito - she left a message with Knox.

I don’t know if Ms. Popovic has been called to testify at the appeal - but her evidence puts Knox and Sollecito at his flat at ~ 17.45, and Knox there at ~ 20.40.  It also shows that from 20.40 on the two had no commitments that night.

Peter’s post suggests the main thrust of today’s appeal hearing is to prove Mr. Curatolo got his days wrong - I don’t see that Ms. Popovic would help the defence team show that because he testified that he had seen them later in the evening - i.e. after 20.40.

I am sure that Peter or one of the other posters will give a report of the proceedings.

Posted by Nolongeramember on 03/12/11 at 10:29 AM | #

Hi Barry. Innai has it right of course on Ms Popovic. The suitcase was not sent on the bus and Sollecito found himself free from then on.

Today’s witnesses are related to the running or non-running of those particular buses described in the post several hours later in the evening.

They are not so far as we know - they are, after all, defense witnesses - witness to any sightings of Knox or Sollecito.

Posted by Peter Quennell on 03/12/11 at 12:57 PM | #

If there were no venues open, how was Rudy seen dancing in a nightclub after the murder? Knox & Sollecito have gained nothing from this. There is enough evidence without needing to place them in the square, like Knox’s roaming phone. All I’ve seen is two desperate people clinging at straws.

Posted by daisysteiner on 03/13/11 at 02:23 PM | #

Very very good point Daisy! Guede was seen at a disco that night + there were other buses there that night (one of which Sollecito’s friend’s suitcase was meant to be on)!

Posted by Giselle on 03/13/11 at 03:41 PM | #

Nick Pisa claimed in his article for The Daily Telegraph that the defence lawyers have established that no venues were open on 1 November 2007:

“However defence lawyers have established that no venues were open the night Miss Kercher was murdered as it was a bank holiday and no buses were running as a result.”

Presumably, he has forgotten writing the following for The Daily Mail:

“Following the murder Guede went out dancing in the Domus nightclub - a popular student haunt in Perugia - and was seen there by several witnesses in the early hours.”

There are no excuses for such sloppy and inaccurate reporting. I expect all journalists covering this case to get their facts right and not to act as an unofficial spokesperson for the defence lawyers. An interview with someone other than Amanda Knox’s family and friends would also be very much appreciated. 

Nick Pisa seems completely ignorant of the fact there was a police investigation which proved that the following nightclubs in Perugia were open on the night of the murder: Velvet, Tu Candela, S. Andrews, Kristall, Conca del Sole and Full Moon and that there were buses running from Piazza Grimana.

Posted by The Machine on 03/13/11 at 07:31 PM | #

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