Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Getting Media Up To Speed With Hard Facts Of Complex Case

Posted by Media Watcher

[Above: Harvard “superlawyer” Alan Dershowitz, who conceded yesterday that there IS a strong case]

Getting Back On The Rails

In the United States, with few exceptions, the media has generally accepted the spin from the defense team.

As a consequence, much of the reporting has been shallow and/or wildly inaccurate.  These errors have compounded over time, which leads to a situation where the American media was completely unprepared for yesterday’s decision.

As someone who has read through all of the available court documents and much of the media and who has more than 25 years’ experience helping national media to understand complex, technical stories, here’s my take on the issues the media should consider as they continue to write about this case:

    One - Formidable Legal Experts Say the Evidence is Strong

    First off, before ever repeating or suggesting that there is a lack of evidence, remember that Harvard Law Professor Alan Dershowitz, who has been on the winning side of 13 of 15 murder and attempted murder cases, has said that in a retrial, Knox will likely be found guilty, “because the evidence supporting a conviction is pretty strong…..At best, she was a terrible person who tried to blame it on some innocent person and she was clearly a liar, and at worst she participated in a horrible murder, and the American media focused much more on Amanda Knox than on the victim of the case because Amanda Knox was prettier and an American and an American sweetheart.”  You can read the context of those remarks here.

    Two - Italy’s Justice System Has Important Differences from the U.S.

    Understand that the rules that apply in U.S. courts don’t apply in Italy because the justice systems are fundamentally different.  As an example, for contested verdicts, a decision is not considered final in Italy until the Supreme Court has weighed in.  Also, unlike in the U.S., at all levels of the three-stage judicial process (original trial, appeal, appeal to Supreme Court) in Italy, juries and judges are required to explain the rationale behind their decisions in legal documents.  These documents are important and anyone who reports on this case should read the underlying source documents.  It is an enormous benefit for defendants to understand how and why a jury convicted, because it makes the chances of filing a quality appeal much higher.  Italy does many things to protect the rights of defendants, and requiring juries to defend their decisions to convict are among them. 

    Three - Amanda is a Convicted Felon for the False Accusation

    After yesterday’s decision, Amanda is now a convicted felon for having falsely accused Patrick Lumumba, a man she worked for, and standing by that accusation for several weeks, but the decision on whether she is guilty of the actual murder won’t be considered final until after the new appeals trial happens and any appeals resulting from that decision are determined at the Supreme Court level.

    Four - The Status of the Case is Not “Starting Over”

    The trial is not “starting over.”  The appeals process and decision was vacated.  The first trial stands, and a new appeal of that trial will take place.

    Five - The Questioning was Not Unusually Harsh

    On the question of whether Amanda was treated unfairly and/or questioned harshly, in the aftermath of a murder, people are questioned fiercely here in the U.S. all the time.  Amanda was not considered a suspect until she put herself at the scene of the crime and until her alibi(s) clearly conflicted with those of Raffaele Sollecito.  She was not a reluctant witness.  In fact, she volunteered to answer more questions at the time Sollecito was being questioned.

    Six - Study the Cell Phone Evidence

    The cell phone evidence is compelling.  Few American media have paid any attention to the cell phone evidence, but the original jury gave it significant weight and it was discussed at length in the original sentencing report.  You should read it.

    Seven - Look at the Photos of the Blood in the Bathroom

    The DNA evidence is also compelling.  There is clear evidence of Amanda’s DNA mixed in with Meredith’s blood in multiple places in the bathroom.  The photos that show the amount of blood ““ all Meredith’s - in the bathroom Amanda and Meredith shared is compelling.  (The Amanda DNA likely comes from scrubbed skin ““as would happen in the context of scrubbing to remove blood.) Amanda has said she assumed the large amounts of blood were from someone being messy after having a period.  Once you take a look at the blood on the faucets, you realize that given the sheer amount of blood, a woman having a period would have had to stand up over the sink and drip blood from the pelvis down onto the handles to make that scenario real.  Instead, of course, given that Amanda herself said the bathroom did not have obvious blood earlier that evening, the blood had to have come from someone (and it couldn’t be Guede given that his footsteps led from the murder scene to outside) who was cleaning up after the murder and was covered in Meredith’s blood.

    Eight - What was the Lamp Doing in Meredith’s Locked Bedroom?

    A lamp from Amanda’s room was found locked in the bedroom where the murder took place.  It’s difficult to imagine any scenario where a lamp would be taken from another room and locked into the scene of the crime other than that it was used to look for evidence during the cleanup and then inadvertently forgotten.

    Nine - Rudy Guede Did Not Act Alone

    The break-in was clearly staged and there was no credible defense argument given to refute that.  Also, given that Guede’s footprints led directly from the scene of the murder to the front door, he clearly was not involved in any after-the-fact coverup/cleanup, which meant someone else was.

    Ten - Consider Amanda’s Middle of the Night Call to Her Mom

    Amanda called her mother in the middle of the night Seattle time before the murder was even discovered.  It was the first and only time she’d done this from Italy.  When asked about it, Amanda claims to not remember having made the call.  It defies credibility to suggest that it was mere happenstance that Amanda decided to call her mother after the murder, wake her up from a sound sleep, and then not remember she had done it.  Instead, the far, far more likely scenario is that she realized she was in serious trouble and reached out to her mother instinctively.  And this happened before a body was even discovered.

    Eleven - “Contamination” Resulting in Sollecito DNA - How Again?

    The defense claimed that there was contamination of the bra clasp and that’s why the DNA from Sollecito was not reliable.  Contamination had to be the defense claim because there was no question that it was actually Sollecito’s DNA.  Keeping an open mind, how would Sollecito’s DNA get on the bra clasp even through contamination?  There was only one other spot of Sollecito’s DNA found in the apartment and that DNA was never near the bra clasp or near the equipment that was used to do the testing on the bra clasp at the time the bra clasp was tested.  In fact, at the time the DNA on the bra clasp was tested, it had been more than seven days since any DNA testing from the crime had been done in that lab and everything had been thoroughly cleaned.  How did any DNA from Sollecito get transferred to the bra clasp?

    Twelve - DNA on Knife - Study the Analysis with an Open Mind

    The DNA evidence from the knife was considered questionable because the method used was relatively new and frankly, some people didn’t seem to understand the underlying math/analysis that supported the conclusion that it was Meredith’s DNA.  The appeals court was directed to have an updated test done on the knife to help clear this up and that analysis was never done.

There are multiple other pieces of evidence and issues to consider ““ and they are discussed on the True Justice site.  If you are going to write on or report about this case, please at least start by reading the document that was written by the judge and jury involved in the original trial. Relying on the defense PR team and on previously published media reports will not help you understand the case because so much of it is completely and wildly inaccurate. 

Also you have a responsibility to get reporting on this case right because if and when Amanda Knox is extradited, it’s important to not fan the flames of a potential international incident by blowing this case up into something it’s not.  It is is a murder trial where the weight of the of evidence is strong enough to convince a Harvard law professor who has worked on many murder cases that Knox’s guilt will likely be affirmed.


An excellent post Media Watcher.  Thank you for putting those points so clearly.

The mixed blood of Meredith and AK, along with two witness statements, swung my opinion to guilt.  The two statements:

1.  when the police arrived and asked if Meredith’s door was usually locked, AK reportedly replied ‘yes’.  Her flatmate and boyfriend contradicted this answer and said the door was never locked.

2.  one of the friends/flatmates expressed grave concerns for Meredith’s welfare, hoping she wasn’t in pain.  The exact timing of this wish/exact comments I can’t remember, but I do vividly recall (with a shiver down my spine) that it was stated that AK said, “You think?  She f@#!ing bled to death.”. At this point, no one on the outside of that bedroom door was supposed to have any knowledge of the manner of that poor girl’s death. So why did AK say that?  How did she know?

Accepting that point 2 could have been something that AK had overheard, or some other genuine reason for her knowing, it does not explain why Meredith’s and AK’s mixed blood was found in another flatmate’s room.

I’ve given AK and RS the benefit of the doubt so many times, but these are the very things that stick out to me like pricks of light in the darkest space.

To the Kercher’s, my heartfelt sympathies for the pain you are living with.  You’re not alone.  There are many, many people, some vocal, more silent, right by your side.

I wouldn’t wish this nightmare on my worst enemy, and I feel genuine sadness for the other families caught up in this slow moving horror. 

But a girl called Meredith Kercher was brutally murdered. 

On a side note, I have spent some time reading IIP’s boards over the last few hours.  There are some very peculiar people on this planet.  Thoughtful, excellent work in hosting a debate.  It went a long way to touching the reasonable on IIP’s board and, with luck, will cause some of the bile to cease.

Posted by TruthWillOut on 03/27/13 at 08:09 PM | #

Could you imagine if one or two national reporters in the US would follow those guidelines? It would be earth-shattering.

Posted by Jeff Friend on 03/27/13 at 08:31 PM | #

Of course, it’s definitely worth noting that this isn’t trial by Internet, but accurate factual reporting would be a refreshing step-change to the articles that have been published from a broad spectrum of the western media to date.

How about focussing on Meredith and the actual crime for a change?  And talk about how there is evidence of RG having assistance from others, and perhaps some reasonable speculation for as to why the police (and many fingers across the globe) pointed at AK and RS.

Posted by TruthWillOut on 03/27/13 at 08:33 PM | #

Everyone, please tweet the link to these points. Try to tweet them to all the journalists, especially ABCNews and Diane Sawyer. They need to understand the case since they are helping Knox promote her book!

Posted by bedelia on 03/27/13 at 08:49 PM | #

Completely agreed TruthWillOut.  What this case needs is serious, sober reporting by people who are willing to take the time to really understand the case and who understand that what comes from the Amanda PR team is a one-sided perspective designed to underplay the totality of the evidence which the original jury considered.  It’s of course more complicated since the case was in Italian - and again, that’s why reading the actual court documents is key.

What I care about and many people who post to this forum care about is getting to the truth.  I don’t have a vendetta against Knox or Sollecito, but I do believe that justice is much better served if reporters report accurately so that the people who may ultimately be involved in any extradition process are not influenced by the wildly inaccurate reporting we’ve been seeing from so many journalists who should know better.

It would actually be really helpful if someone like Jay Rosen (who is a respected media critic) would do a post-mortem on the coverage.  It’s amazing how much has been wildly, indefensibly wrong.

Posted by Media Watcher on 03/27/13 at 08:52 PM | #

Journalism is much better served by the truth!

Posted by bedelia on 03/27/13 at 08:59 PM | #

Agreed! Agreed! Agreed!

Indeed, in the mighty words of Mark Twain

“If you tell the truth you don’t have to remember anything”

Balanced reporting has been almost nonexistent for the longest time in this case.  I admire the Kerchers for honouring Meredith’s memory with their dignity.  Their time will come.

Posted by TruthWillOut on 03/27/13 at 09:10 PM | #

Excellent summary lets get this link out into cyberspace and hope more media latch on.

Posted by Jeffski1 on 03/27/13 at 09:33 PM | #

The pundit chatter in the US media about extradition has been remarkable in its cluelessness. At the same time, I think it strongly suggests that - whether they admit it or not - the legally trained pundits realize how strong the case against Knox actually is. Confirmation of the calunnia conviction is a huge event of significant consequence.

Posted by Skeptical Bystander on 03/27/13 at 10:14 PM | #

Alan Dershowitz was quoted on TJMK before. He clearly knows the Italian system (which was recreated from the ground up post-WWII to be very fair) and respects it.

He doesnt know the full facts of the trial in 2009 and wrongly said this: “the case was not well tried the first time. But at a second trial, there’s a very high likelihood that they may very well convict her.” Actually the prosecution did a superb job in 2009, sharp, clear, fast and compelling (the daily reports are all here) and it was the defenses who were often stuck for words - and sometimes not always showing up.

But he SEES the huge body of evidence.

We have a lot of good lawyers read TJMK and some judges and even superior court judges do. Lawyer James Raper put out this challenge a few months ago, and it is very telling that Knox US lawyers Ted Simon and Robert Barnett chose to pass.

Ted Simon was making some lightweight remarks on TV here yesterday, which had lawyers who actually know Italian law scratching their heads. Has he done any homework at all? If so he might have steered the Knox-Mellases away from their mess.

Posted by Peter Quennell on 03/27/13 at 10:35 PM | #

Alan Desrhowiz is one of the two media lawyers in the US who command the most attention and sway the most audience minds and most media minds.

The other is CNN’s legal host Nancy Grace. She said in October 2011 that Amanda Knox’s release was a “miscarriage of justice”. Take a look:

Posted by Peter Quennell on 03/27/13 at 10:40 PM | #

Hellmans stupidity and lack of understanding became obvious when he proposed that Guede COULD have used the nail in the wall to gain entry into Filomenas room. That was for the defense to prove! On all the pro-knox sites I debated on, no-one offered that as a legitimate way in. I think he may have been the only person in the world who did.

Posted by starsdad on 03/27/13 at 11:11 PM | #

Hellmanns illogical and absurd judgement has been totally destroyed on all points I believe, the groupies are still using his judgement as a arguing tool all over the web right now they are in total denial.

I am having multiple conversations right now and I have never seen them so deflated.

Brilliant for Meredith and her family and of course everyone on both PMFS & TJMK who have fought so valiantly for justice.

Posted by Jeffski1 on 03/27/13 at 11:26 PM | #

Wonderful news, so proud of you guys who’ve fought so hard for justice!


Posted by Melanie on 03/27/13 at 11:51 PM | #

This is an excellent post. This, along with the 25 odd questions compiled by James Raper in another post make for compelling reading. To add to a few points:

Point 7 - I have never heard of any normal, reasonably clean woman leaving so much of menstrual blood in the bathroom like that. To think that a bloody footprint could be because of menstrual blood completely defies logic. How is it even possible that “menstrual issues” could lead to a bloody footprint? By all accounts, Meredith was very particular about cleanliness and AK was aware of this.And despite what RS mumbled in his interview with Katie Couric, it was pretty obvious (atleast to AK) that the stain on the bathmat was blood. She says in her Nov 4th email “I noticed the blood in the bathroom.It was on the mat I was using to dry my feet”.

Yet, not only dry her feet she did, but also scootered around the house in an undressed state using the mat without any concern that someone might walk in and see her (according to her email she thought that Meredith was sleeping in the room and someone had popped out to dump the trash. She even left the front door unlocked helpfully. For someone who was so sure that her flatmates are all hunky-dory in their rooms, she was remarkably blase about bothering to even carry a towel to the bathroom).

Point 8 - Meredith could not have “borrowed” the lamp as some FOAkers love to claim. She had her own lamp and had no need to borrow it. She was not the kind of person who borrowed things without asking. Noone, including AK herself remembers Meredith borrowing anything from AK.  Meredith was out with her friends the day before the murder, and considering that the lamp was the only source of light in AK’s room, it is highly unlikely that it wouldn’t be missed for 2-3 days. Above all, even if we accept that Meredith borrowed it, why would she put it on the floor behind the door? And no, Guede couldn’t have used it for clean-up either. If he was smart enough to have cleaned up using a borrowed lamp, he would not have left his traces in the room and shit in the bathroom.

Point 9 - Also, it was almost impossible for Guede to have gained entry into the house as the defense claims. Contrary to what the FOAkers would lead you to believe, no one from the defense team or outside managed to actually climb in through Filomena’s window, “easily” or otherwise. Many people are under the mistaken assumption that it was quite easy to get in and someone actually demonstrated it. I remember one so-called journalist (don’t remember her name) saying “I could probably do it”. Oh yeah?? I’d like to see her try.  The only demonstration that happened was that a person from the defense team climbed up to the window and foolishly hung there not knowing what to do, until someone asked him to climb down.

Point 10 - Not only that, AK also conveniently “forgot” the call that she had made to Meredith’s English phone (despite knowing that she does not use it for local calls) before calling Filomena. Even when Filomena asked her to try to call Meredith, she did not mention that she (AK) had already done so. Nor is there any mention of the call in the email she sent to her friends. Even RS completely avoids talking about it in his book. Anything that raises suspicion is conveniently “forgotten” by both of them.

Above all this, the most important aspect, in my opinion is to look at the entire picture. One or two things can be coincidences but when the number of coincidences start defying logic, it is time to rethink. Considered individually, it may be possible to come up with alternative scenarios or explanations. But if the two were indeed innocent, why on earth would there be a need in the first place to come up with alternate explanations for so many inconsistencies?

Posted by Sara on 03/28/13 at 12:02 AM | #

Very true Sara.  Her only lamp behind Meredith’s locked door and on the floor?? bothered me too, as well as the impossible climb up to the very visible and high window, and the glass on the sill that wasn’t knocked off.  That along with the footprints in shoes right out the door and the lone footprint withOUT a shoe on the bathroom mat.

And who really could buy that pieced ears drip blood onto the sink (and the bidet??) unless it was done with a VERY large needle, and that would get infected and hurt like h***, which was not the case as she was seen just after the murder, and tell me that you wouldn’t notice blood on a light switch if it was also on a bathmat, and then call out to a roommate that you knew was supposed to be home, or call her friends, when several things seemed out of place or suspicious, but would just continue to take a shower, scooch around on a bloody bathmat to your room (what was that supposed to prove anyway? never understood why she said that), and then return to the boyfriend’s with a mop to clean up water that could have been mopped up with any towel in his place? 

Each piece of evidence can be contested but all put together makes for a different story.  Some things have been said but I don’t know if they are just rumors, such as RS being in the laundromat washing his shoes and clothes right after that night.

Posted by believing on 03/28/13 at 12:12 AM | #

These 12 points pack a punch. It’s as if the case has seasoned with time. Can’t say the same for Steve Moore, boy did he look downcast and discomfited in his interview with Greta Van Susteren. He sputtered about no evidence and when asked, “What’s Knox doing now?” he said he thought she was in school from what he’d heard, like it was all vague and unknown to him now.

He stumbled a lot on “What’s Knox doing now?” and tried to distance himself from the subject by deflecting the question with a question of his own. His mouth was acutely tight and his lips drawn down in a distinct frown throughout the interview. Only conclusion: Oh, they’re hurting now.

Moore seemed convinced Amanda would never be extradited.

Posted by Hopeful on 03/28/13 at 12:38 AM | #

Excellent summary. Personally I would not go with Massei’s scrubbed hands hypothesis—there’s too much of Knox’s DNA for it to be anything other than Knox actually bleeding. But it’s a minor detail. I will definitely try to spread the word.

Posted by brmull on 03/28/13 at 12:56 AM | #

Very good summary, MediaWatcher.

I’d say that for point 1, the evidence is strong in itself, and not only because reputable sources affirm it.  The FOA-propagated idea that there is no evidence or only scant evidence is ludicrous in the face of the entire existing body: behavior, conflicting and changing alibis, witness statements, DNA evidence, phone and cell phone activity, etc.

Posted by Vivianna on 03/28/13 at 01:14 AM | #

Hi brmull,

It is clear that Amanda Knox was bleeding on the night of the murder because her blood was on the tap of the basin in the bathroom.

“…a sample was taken from the front part of the faucet of the sink, which yielded the genetic profile of Amanda Knox…” (The Massei report, page192).

Luciano Garofano is certain that Knox was bleeding heavily:

“Let’s say the assassin used the basin and bidet to wash the knife: if you look at the electropherograms you’ll see that there seems to be more of Amanda Knox’s blood than Meredith’s. There is a copious blood loss by Amanda.” (Luciano Garofano, Darkness Descending, page 374).

Posted by The Machine on 03/28/13 at 01:17 AM | #

If you are interested this is an audio interview of Dershowitz on the case:

Posted by Yummi on 03/28/13 at 04:27 AM | #

I’ve just been following the cellphone evidence again and that in itself at least indicates something was very wrong with those two.

Posted by James Higham on 03/28/13 at 05:05 AM | #

Dershowitz has now written an interesting op-ed on the case for the Wall St. Journal:

He is advising Amanda’s parents to sue and also says Italy erred in not taking Amanda’s passport while the case was still moving through the Italian courts.

Posted by Media Watcher on 03/28/13 at 05:24 AM | #

Thanks for the link Media Watcher. I think you mean Meredith’s should parents sue, right?

Posted by carlos on 03/28/13 at 05:48 AM | #

Whoops, good catch Carlos.  You’re absolutely right, of course.  He was advising Meredith’s parents to sue.  Although I sincerely doubt that Amanda’s book will be released on schedule in any event, which may wreck havoc with her advance.  It’s hard to imagine the publisher didn’t build in a clause to deal with this eventuality.

It’s also hard to imagine a defense attorney who wouldn’t tell his client:  “You’ve got to prioritize the legal situation.  Anything you say in the book or in interviews will be closely scrutinized.  The risk is too great.”

But the attorneys and PR people working for Amanda also know that her shelf life as a railroaded, innocent victim is at hugely at risk under increased scrutiny and that a later release will likely not attract nearly as much attention.

Posted by Media Watcher on 03/28/13 at 06:24 AM | #

PS - and the phrase is “wreak havoc” not wreck, although “wreck” just seems like such an appropriate word to describe what’s going on, it flowed from my fingers.

Posted by Media Watcher on 03/28/13 at 06:28 AM | #

The publisher confirmed that the book and interview will go ahead as planned.  Someone pasted a report from Amazon yesterday regarding pre-orders, which shows that Knox’ book jumped from the 2400-ish place to the 470-ish place, if I remember correctly.

This is exactly what the publishers were banking on when they postponed the book.  I said back then that, to them, the actual decision didn’t matter, since they have no concern for Knox’ fate; they are only interested in the trial-related hype which constitutes free advertising and which will drive up sales.

I have no doubt that they are approaching this with much more caution than Sollecito’s publisher, given that their investment is much higher and that they’ve had advance warning of Sollecito’s book-related troubles.

Like Stilicho was pointing out yesterday on PMF, there might be colorful hand tracings and such instead of controversial material.  I’m also positive that a lot of non-groupies who ordered the book will be sorely disappointed if they expect any sort of conclusive information.

However, I would expect her book to do better than Sollecito’s, given that she’s had much more media attention and has a larger “fan base” of middle-aged white knights and various psychopaths.  Plus, there are probably a bunch of people who are simply curious about what she has to say.  I’d be very surprised if it achieved bestseller status, but someone showed a while ago that you don’t have to sell that many copies to earn out your advance.

There’s also nothing preventing the publisher from releasing an opposite viewpoint book shortly, which would drum up sales for both books.

As long as they’ve thoroughly cleaned up her drivel, they don’t have that much to worry about.  Obviously, we’ll be here in the trenches to take it apart once it’s released, but I’m not going to be too surprised if it’s devoid of anything remotely controversial.  And if it’s not, we’ll be happy to point out all the inaccuracies and myths.

Posted by Vivianna on 03/28/13 at 11:22 AM | #

If there is a chance that RS would be thrown back into jail because he is an Italian citizen - and AK will hide out in the USA and evade prison - then perhaps RS will think about cutting a deal, turning state’s witness and ratting on AK for reduced prison time? Unless of course this option is no longer available to him?

Posted by Terence on 03/28/13 at 02:05 PM | #

Perhaps Amanda will have an explanation for why there was a luminol identified trace containing the mixed DNA of Meredith and herself in the private space of Filomena’s bedroom. What is the coincidental probability of that? It defies an innocent explanation. At the very minimum it ties Amanda into a clean-up/staging scenario.

Needless to say H&Z completely ignored the obvious significance of this finding.

Posted by James Raper on 03/28/13 at 02:53 PM | #

Quote from recent article by Barbie Nadeau in The Daily Beast -

“The high court has not yet released its reasoning for its reversal, but among the many points of law discussed in closing arguments on Monday were prosecutorial accusations of everything from blatant errors made by the appellate judge and jury to allegations of corruption against the team of independent experts who nullified forensic evidence. More than a few journalists covering the appeal noted at the time that the so-called independent experts were particularly chummy with Sollecito’s very wealthy family. They were seen by many huddling together in coffee bars in Perugia.”

This was before the report was made public.

There is more, much more, to come out about the whole sordid business of the C&V appointment. All in good time.

Posted by James Raper on 03/28/13 at 03:01 PM | #

Thanks, James Raper, and the rest of you! Been a long time coming, but I still wonder if we’ll ever hear what actually happened. My only hope is that as the time runs out for these two that Amanda leaves Raffaelle hanging and he will finally roll over and tell the truth.

Posted by mojo on 03/28/13 at 04:15 PM | #

This is the new firm, founded by RS in Switzerland … ciao ciao.

Posted by ncountryside on 03/28/13 at 05:52 PM | #

Dershowitz is not advising Meredith’s parents to sue.  He says they “may” sue & gives reasons.

His discussion of “transnational” law is interesting.  It is distinguished from international law which (he says) is not commonly applied to cases of individual crime like this (my words, as I recall his meaning.)

The big surprise from my perspective is that over the next several years we may witness the various interactions of transnational law. This case involves the citizen of one country charged with killing the citizen of another in yet a third country, each having its individual laws.

Does he mean, then, several years before this case is settled?  Or did he only mean to generalize?

I think extradition is not the important thing here & really, I don’t think further imprisonment is the important thing at this point.  Amanda has been free for sometime now & shows herself to be no (ordinary) psychopath, despite the gruesome nature of a crime which (to state my belief) she planned & carried through with a final thrust of the knife.

What’s important, given the evidence & given her own words & actions—she condemns herself out of her own mouth—is a verdict of guilty of rape & murder.  Essentially & apart from her private fantasy & personal twists, an altogether senseless crime, the more deplorable for that reason.

Amanda appears to have repressed a good deal of her participation in this crime (in Freud’s sense of repression—out of sight, out of mind: or in a word, unconscious.) She has passed up the opportunity to write a great book for a chance to cash in.

Good for Dershowitz & thanks to Media Watcher for embedding the Wall Street Journal’s Dershowitz column in easy reference.

Posted by Ernest Werner on 03/28/13 at 06:00 PM | #

Hi Ernest,

In the CNN interview cited early in the post (not the WSJ piece), here’s the reference to Dershowitz advising a suit from the Kerchers:

“If he were advising Kercher’s parents, Dershowitz said, he would recommend that they file a civil suit to claim the money Knox has received as an advance for a book about the case that is scheduled for publication next month.
“They have a right to sue her on behalf of their dead daughter,” he said, noting that the standard required for conviction in civil cases is a preponderance of the evidence. “I think that would be easy to do.”

A person should not profit from his or her crimes, and Dershowitz, I think, is helping people to understand that Meredith’s family has a right to sue if they want to.

When people wonder why the people on this site are so motivated, they have to understand that on some visceral level, we all feel for the family of Meredith Kercher.  How awful to see so much terrible, sensational reporting about an event that resulted in the senseless death of your loved daughter and sister.

In my case, if reporters would report accurately on the situation, I woud back off, my I’m just so tired of seeing reporters claim as fact assertions that come straight from the Defense Talking Points, and I’m tired of seeing people who point out key, indisputable facts (e.g., Amanda’s unaccounted for middle-of-the-night phone call to her mother BEFORE the murder was even discovered) get bullied.

The reason, I think, is that Amanda has her PR help, and Meredith’s family has no one except the True Justice posters advocating forcefully on her behalf - and on Meredith’s behalf, what we want is the truth.

Posted by Media Watcher on 03/28/13 at 06:20 PM | #

Raffaele Sollecito is granted of a residece permit in Switzerland:

Posted by ncountryside on 03/28/13 at 06:30 PM | #

Raffaele Sollecito knows that he will be found guilty of Meredith’s murder. He can run, but he can’t hide. He will end up back in prison.

It’s shocking that Conti and Vecchiotti had contact with Sollecito’s family. Their credibility has been completely shot to pieces. They should never be allowed into a courtroom again unless it’s to face charges of perverting the course of justice. Carla Vecchiotti knew it was possible to carry out a reliable test on the remaining DNA on the knife using the latest cutting-edge technology yet she refused to do so. What has she done with the remaining sample of DNA? Has she disposed of this evidence?

Posted by The Machine on 03/28/13 at 07:36 PM | #

I quote ‘DENVER’ in his article ‘AMANDA KNOX: Sociopath’s Picnic!’ dated 23 March 2013.

‘I have no insight as to the systematic process of the Italian Judicial System, but I would not be surprised if Judge Hellman was appointed to their Supreme Court someday’.

Oh, really!

Posted by starsdad on 03/28/13 at 08:00 PM | #


The same thing can be said about the scream. AK confirmed the scream before others!

And I am not even bothering to talk about the money!

Posted by chami on 03/28/13 at 08:21 PM | #

Posted by Miriam on 03/28/13 at 08:31 PM | #

Being somewhat bored the other evening I switched on Fox which is always good for a laugh. They were talking about Knox of course and the self congratulatory drivel that came/comes out is sickening. For example it was suggested that since US went to Italy in the second world war any extradition requests for Knox should be viewed as the basis for a huge belly laugh. This misinformation is a joke particularly the American double indemnity clause. I would remind some of the morons who inhabit not just Fox but others that the original murder of Meredith by Amanda Knox was committed in Italy.

Posted by Grahame Rhodes on 03/28/13 at 08:38 PM | #


So she is re-writing the book. She may change the title to ‘Waiting with dread’

Posted by starsdad on 03/28/13 at 08:47 PM | #

Someone is probably rewriting it for her.  Getting Bargain Bob and Ted the Vulture to publicly shill for her must be costing Knox a fortune.  It also costs a lot of money to rewrite a 480-page fantasy novel.

She won’t see a cent of her ill-gotten reward.

Posted by Stilicho on 03/28/13 at 09:15 PM | #

I am confident that H&Z must be most happy that the “real truth” has been now found.

Well, I always suspected that being incompetent is rarely a crime (even in Italy) but then…

Posted by chami on 03/28/13 at 11:00 PM | #

Judge Luigi Riello is my new hero. Rock on Riello!
@Truth Matters. You might click at the top right hand of True Justice for Meredith Kercher,on the blue typefont to see Evidence. Also there’s evidence at Perugia Murder and Perugia Murder

Oh, the killers on the run. They are squirming now. Yep. Knox on the hook and Raf running to Swiss alps, take it easy in Audi, Raf, downshift and buy 93 octane. You always wanted to flee Italy for Munich. Stop being codependent, take assertiveness class. No, not from Amanda, she teaches aggressiveness not assertiveness. It’s called Say What you Mean, and Mean What you say, and don’t say it mean. Write Julian Assange.

Wouldn’t it be great if Garafano could be called in for expert testimony on the blood evidence? Again, let’s hear it for Procurator General Riello. A mnemonic device for him is “keepin it real Riello.”

Posted by Hopeful on 03/28/13 at 11:26 PM | #

Thank you, Media Watcher.  A welcome clarification.

I agree with what you say.

Posted by Ernest Werner on 03/28/13 at 11:49 PM | #

it seems she is only rewriting the parts that could get her in trouble. I do not know how trust worthy the source is.

Posted by Miriam on 03/29/13 at 12:20 AM | #

Truth Matters wrote: “My question is where is the DNA and fingerprint report that rules out Meredith’s boyfriend and his three roommates who lived in the apartment directly below Meredith?  I saw a comment on eithr the UK Telegraph or the Daily Mail Online that had suggested they could have been responsible but I cannot find the evidence to state they definitely were not.”

First of all, I would advise you NOT to get ideas about this case from comments on newstories, many of which come from shills for the Knox PR team, or just people brainwashed by them. Comments can and have said things as absurd as that aliens killed Meredith.

Second of all, Meredith’s boyfriend was out of town during the murder, he had an airtight alibi. There was no need for a “DNA and fingerprint report” to “prove” anything.

As for the other three boys, they were not in the house that night. I assume their alibis checked out, as well.

Their DNA was probably taken, as a precaution, by the Scientific Police. Although one can never prove a negative, their DNA was not found in the relevant exhibits in the house.

If you are sincere, the links that Hopeful recommended will help you out. In particular, the Powerpoint slides by James Raper and Kermit referred to a few posts down on TJMK are very informative. They’re very easy (and fun) to watch, and I would recommend you start there.

There are also posts that summarize the Massei report. That would be another good place to start.

If you’re not sincere, beware! Trolls in the Meredith Realms do not last long.

Posted by Earthling on 03/29/13 at 12:48 AM | #

Don’t forget about the blood spot in Filomena’s room that also had the mixed DNA of both Knox and Kercher. This could even be seen as more significant than the mixed DNA in the bathroom because it was at the other end of the cottage. It was also the site for the alleged “break in,” or more likely “staged” break in. People who try and reason Knox’s DNA away as being normal because she lived in the cottage have no logical explanation for this spot. They likely are not considering and certainly have no reasonable explanation for how a blood droplet, which was deemed to contain the mixed DNA of Meredith Kercher and Amanda Knox, got into that room, far from Kercher’s room. Moreover, by Knox’s own admission she had not gone into Filomena’s room during her first visit to the cottage (when she showered). The possibility of a blood spot mixed with Knox and Kercher’s DNA profiles—spread that far across a large area—of coincidentally being there while one of the two is lying dead in another room is so astronomical that it is completely unfathomable and certainly unexplainable in the context of Knox’s innocence.

Posted by willsavive on 03/29/13 at 01:50 AM | #

Great article and video clip by Andrea Vogt!  Wish American news was this unbiased. 

Can someone translate the article about r high tailing it to Switzerland.  Is he allowed under the circumstances? 

Ak team will have to be extremely careful about what’s in the book.  What’s the deal with the calumny trial now too?


Posted by believing on 03/29/13 at 02:08 AM | #

Ted Simon - “there was never any evidence in this case” “she still remains not quilty”

Posted by believing on 03/29/13 at 04:28 AM | #

Truth Matters:

I gave you facts, all four of the boys who lived downstairs were all elsewhere and their alibis held up. Don’t bother with thanks, none necessary.

I also made the trenchant observation that you cannot prove a negative (by DNA or fingerprint evidence or any means). So I don’t really understand your question.

People new to these boards are usually asked to take some time to read up on the evidence before they ask questions. I am not the only one to ask that - Skep and others always do. We don’t like questions that make no sense or have been answered in a million places already. Just the way we are. Sorry if that offends.

Posted by Earthling on 03/29/13 at 06:55 AM | #

Hi Truth Matters,

The alibis of the four men who lived in the flat below checked out and there is no DNA or forensic evidence that implicates them in Meredith’s murder.

Posted by The Machine on 03/29/13 at 09:07 AM | #

Read this:

Posted by thundering on 03/29/13 at 10:36 AM | #


I went through the article by Nina Burleigh: critically. The comments provided, as expected, far greater entertainment.

She had only one problem with TJMK: a bucket and a mop. If we drop the bucket and the mop, then the case crumbles- fair enough- I think she means it.

About the PMF: she was unhappy that someone commented that she (AK) looks like a killer. Great! If she (NB) is a journalist, she should study some logic.

It is possible to publish anything on the internet, but I read the article, after you gave the link, only because the site name says “” which I thought may mean something. I was wrong.

Nina gave her opinion about the case in the last couple of lines: In my opinion, the new panel will agree with the last one that the case against the students is fatally flawed. I could, of course be wrong. In the eyes of the Knox-haters, I will always be wrong. But another shoe is also about to drop: Harper Collins plans to bring out Amanda Knox’s own book next month. For the company, which paid a reported $4 million for the memoir, the timing cannot be more perfect.
Agreed. More and more money is always welcome. Who says that crime does not pay?

Posted by chami on 03/29/13 at 02:12 PM | #

It’s very telling that she refers to people who believe Knox and Sollecito are guilty as “Knox-haters”.
Yes Nina, we can see who you are in bed with.

Posted by DF2K on 03/29/13 at 03:38 PM | #

Hi Skep. The post is an elegant reply. Burleigh’s mean and unprofessional attacks on Andrea Vogt and Barbie Nadeau really are beneath contempt.

Plus she lies. I am astounded at how much she lies about me when at her request I helped her out. The email chain contradicts all she claims. Does she not realise that?

Herer is a repeat of my own response to Burleigh copied from the thread directly beneath.


[On Breligh talking about me] How dumb. I am neither stout nor ruddy not an Englishman, can she actually even remember who she met?

In fact at the start I merely wrote congratulating her when her book was announced - and she wrote back saying it was her publishers’ idea and she would be way out of her depth. I made her no offers and sent her no links. No money changed hands.

I was warned about her before we ever met. She is universally regarded among the real reporters in Rome and Perugia as a PR stooge, because they all saw her sitting in cafes etc only with Knox family and defense lawyers for hours and hours, with no-one else.

She assured me in emails that this wasnt true and merely her front, and now she wanted to get the rest.

We met at her holiday place (her idea) two hours west of NYC. She is tiny and I thought fearful and very naive. She gave me a signed book, we had lunch, and went to her house where we mostly sat upstairs in a large ex-schoolroom which now serves as her bedroom to talk.

She said she was in court when AK was on the stand and she said she like others in the court was chilled and decided at that point AK did it and had sounded like a psychopath. I gave her a few links and tips.

We kept in touch for a few weeks after she went back to Perugia with her family. She asked me for more help. She told me she could barely afford the trip and might have to give up her Manhattan place (though she stayed for many months.)

Search “bucket” on this site and see what you find. Did we really make the bucket a big deal? There is ONE mention in someones evidence of a bucket having been at the door. All other mentions are of the bucket in Sollecitos flat.

There were our past posts on this silly woman and her meanspirited and inaccurate work..

Posted by Peter Quennell on 03/29/13 at 03:43 PM | #

Hi Truth Matters,

Your best-bet for starters is:

Sunday, June 19, 2011,
The Massei Sentencing Report For Knox And Sollecito: Part 1 Of A Summary In 4 Parts
Posted by Skeptical Bystander

Then read the other 3 Parts.

Posted by Cardiol MD on 03/29/13 at 03:53 PM | #

@ chami,

Yes, I was also attracted to the TIME reference.

As well as the last paragraph you point out, I found the previous paragraph intriguing:

“We don’t know what the Italian judges were thinking when they threw out Knox and Sollecito’s acquittal this week—and we won’t know until they release their report 90 days from now. My best analysis of their motivation is that they are simply letting the slow wheels of Italian justice turn by allowing a panel of judges in Florence to double-check the ruling of the appellate court in Perugia that acquitted the two students in October 2011. Given the notoriety of the case, and the fact that so many Italians still believe the original prosecutor’s theory that Kercher died in a cultish sex-game gone wrong, the high court may merely be applying an extra layer of judicial safeguard.”

It must be her way of justifying / rationalizing / explaining away the rather inconvenient Cassation result and the Italian judicial process.

Posted by thundering on 03/29/13 at 03:58 PM | #

@ chami,

Yes, I was also attracted to the TIME reference.

As well as the last paragraph you point out, I found the previous paragraph intriguing:

“We don’t know what the Italian judges were thinking when they threw out Knox and Sollecito’s acquittal this week—and we won’t know until they release their report 90 days from now. My best analysis of their motivation is that they are simply letting the slow wheels of Italian justice turn by allowing a panel of judges in Florence to double-check the ruling of the appellate court in Perugia that acquitted the two students in October 2011. Given the notoriety of the case, and the fact that so many Italians still believe the original prosecutor’s theory that Kercher died in a cultish sex-game gone wrong, the high court may merely be applying an extra layer of judicial safeguard.”

It must be her way of justifying / rationalizing / explaining away the rather inconvenient Cassation result and the Italian judicial process.

Posted by thundering on 03/29/13 at 03:59 PM | #

I think that Dershowitz’s weighing in on this case with his opinion on “the preponderance of evidence” is going to make a difference with the media, eventually.

What’s hard to believe is that Amanda will face extradition. High government authorities in Italy & America would hardly agree to returning this young woman to spend those many years in prison, given this interval of freedom. She’s very likely home free, despite any verdict in the second appeal.

For this very reason (in case she never returns) a verdict of guilty is required by the very evidence. Living under such a verdict would be a trial in itself.

Posted by Ernest Werner on 03/29/13 at 04:06 PM | #

Good morning, Media Watcher.  Kudos to you for trying to educate the American media.  I suspect you may be giving them a little too much credit for looking things up on their own, though. 
I took special notice of your points #6 and #10—the Cellphone Activity and the ‘Middle of the Night Call’—probably because it was this call that sealed it for me. 
You point out how odd it is for Knox to make this call, knowing what early hours it is in Seattle, and that she has never seen fit to do this before.  But it seems to me that the real oddity of this call is what she said to her mother, how she presented the current scene… which didn’t include the Communications police and another roommate’s boyfriend and his friend being present.  She made it sound like she and Sollecito were the only ones there, wondering what next to do. Grand testified that KNox and Sollecito came out of Knox’s bedroom, right after Romanelli and she arrived.  So we know this phone call was made while the Communications police were there. 
The point is, Knox painted a different scene to her mother than what the reality was.  You said you thought she realized that she was ‘in trouble’ and naturally reached out to her mother.  I, on the other hand, see it as her clearly trying to establish alibi, once she realized that the original plan had gone haywire.  Same w/ Sollecito calling his sister and then the regular police—trying to establish, if not alibi, then simply an interest in bringing the police in. 
Edda Mellas told the truth about this phone call when questioned by police, before she got to talk to Knox—and what she told police is the real DAMNING evidence.  Mellas knows it—and why she never told that story quite the same for the American press—and Knox continues to ‘not remember’ that call, to this day. 
Please, Media Watcher, flesh this out for our numb-skulled and lazy media… because in the days before DNA, this would’ve been enough to convict, in itself.

Posted by Hellinahandcart on 03/29/13 at 04:23 PM | #

” Operated by a Seattle housewife” I think that Nina is still upset by the very good and hilarious post Peggy wrote on her book. Yes, let us all stop reading anything Peggy writes because after all she is just a housewife, and let’s start paying attention to the brilliant Nina. What an ass!

As for Peter being British,I demand we send a petition to Pete,so he can explain himself to all us avatars.

Thanks Pete for posting the link that Peggy wrote,I needed a laugh.


Posted by Miriam on 03/29/13 at 04:39 PM | #

” Operated by a Seattle housewife” I think that Nina is still upset by the very good and hilarious post Peggy wrote on her book. Yes, let us all stop reading anything Peggy writes because after all she is just a housewife, and let’s start paying attention to the brilliant Nina. What an ass!

As for Peter being British,I demand we send a petition to Pete,so he can explain himself to all us avatars.

Thanks Pete for posting the link that Peggy wrote,I need a laugh.


Posted by Miriam on 03/29/13 at 04:39 PM | #

Here’s another one, Media Watcher, for you to slam on the media: 
When you look at the pictures of the bath mat, there is half of a bloody bare footprint—on the edge of the mat. For those who persist- or even just question- the issue of a ‘clean up’—Where’s the other half of the print?  Since the top half of the print is on the mat, but the bottom half is not on the floor, where is it?  Where did it go? 
If DNA continues to be a sticking point, let’s argue this on points which cannot rationally be explained, much less argued.

Posted by Hellinahandcart on 03/29/13 at 04:55 PM | #

It’s not just Alan Dershowitz who expresses his doubt over Amanda’s story. Nancy Grace, Jane Velez Mitchell, Barbie Nadeau, Ann Coulter, and John Follain have all hinted or outright stated that they believe Knox and Sollecito might be guilty. And Katie Couric, while doing her best to maintain a professional neutral stance, still could barely conceal her disgust when she interviewed Sollecito.

Amanda Knox and her expensive PR team are learning that you can only fool the people for so long.

Posted by devorah on 03/29/13 at 05:09 PM | #

Just an observation from me.

I find it truly wonderful that so many people who generally don’t post here are doing so. Point of interest though, it must have eagerly occurred to the pro Knox mob that there had been a slight diminish in posts to this site.

WRONG!!! And to repeat myself. “Wonderful”

Posted by Grahame Rhodes on 03/29/13 at 05:39 PM | #

I think that the Americans are angry with the Italians because of the CIA case.

I think, however, that they are actually feeling jealous- oh, the Italians did it first!- but cannot admit.

Just imagine for a moment what would have happened if MK were American and AK were a German. I can’t guess and I leave it as an exercise for the students of sociology!

Posted by chami on 03/29/13 at 06:01 PM | #

Thanks, Miriam. As soon as I have finished reassuring my clients that I have not suddenly retired, leaving in my wake unfinished translations and such, I will repost my views of Nina’s book on my own blog.

What’s Nina got against housewives anyway?


Posted by Skeptical Bystander on 03/29/13 at 06:26 PM | #

thank you thank you thank you thank you…....
Happy Spring to all !

About the book, I’m considering re-sending my letter to Claire Wachtel (who never did reply). Then again, since the Knoxii appear to have an inherent inability to view reality, perhaps they wil, within their bestseller’s pages, include material that will appear obviously incriminating to those will normal reasoning abilities?

to Skep: where did your personal blog go? I’ve missed it for a while.

re Nina B’s “other shoe about to drop” : take care; it may have someone’s blood on it.

Posted by mimi on 03/29/13 at 07:20 PM | #

Nina Burleigh fell down the Amanda Knox rabbit hole, she definitely met the Mad Hatter. In her wonderland of Knox influence which she soaked up like a wet doughnut over too many coffees at Perugia cafes in 2008, she turned a blind eye to the bloody footprints, the bathmat and many other indicators of someone besides Guede. It’s no wonderland when Luminol shows bare footprints in blood all over the cottage yet Guede was wearing shoes, Amanda’s actual blood and water left on a bathroom sink, her lies about unusual phone calls to a sleeping mother long before others found a body, and differing tales to police of a total drug-induced blackout yet a cleaning frenzy.

Will Savive, good to see you. You know an awful lot about this case.

Posted by Hopeful on 03/29/13 at 08:09 PM | #

Oh dear, Nina Burleigh has ‘trained her scope’ on TJMK and PMF. Protecting further sales of her book? The end paragraphs seem to confirm this. Her analysis, of what Cassation will decide, seems to suggest to the reader that her book is still valid and should be bought. Most commentators think that there will be a re-run of the appeal….at least

Posted by starsdad on 03/29/13 at 09:11 PM | #

Hey, Mimi - it’s still around, my personal blog. But not well tended these days. Today, I posted a reply to Nina Burleigh’s rant on Time:

Posted by Skeptical Bystander on 03/29/13 at 09:38 PM | #

Enjoying reading your blog, Skep. Thanks for sharing the link.

Posted by Earthling on 03/30/13 at 01:46 AM | #

Hellinahandcart - good point and I guess the other half of the footprint was erased from the floor when AK scooched across the floor into her room.  Not sure if that is hearsay or her actual testimony.

Posted by believing on 03/30/13 at 05:28 AM | #

Hi TruthMatters,

What would you expect a knife to look like after a brutal murder? Human skin is soft and easily pierced with a sharp instrument. Meredith’s DNA was lodged in a microscopic groove on the blade of the knife. There were other DNA traces on the blade, but not enough to test at the time.

Posted by The Machine on 04/01/13 at 09:26 PM | #

Hi TruthMatters,

I’m not a regular poster myself and only began following the case closely during the intense PR campaign that built shortly before the now annulled appeal trial. I don’t post much because I am shy and feel that I don’t have much to offer the conversation that others can’t articulate more gracefully.

But please, please don’t feel unwelcome. In the time that I’ve been reading here and at pmf, I have seen many annoying and mean spirited trolls show up. Some are obvious and are summarily dealt with. But some are subtle and have their questions and concerns thoughtfully addressed only to prove later that they were mocking or otherwise wasting people’s precious time. If you feel any suspicion, please don’t take it personally. There is a lot of warmth, passion, intelligence, expertise and patience on this site and the others.

Regarding your knife DNA question, the only part of your question I feel confident addressing is this: The amount of acceptable DNA belonging to Meredith from everyday use on the blade of a knife that rested in a drawer in a house she had never been to is ZERO. There is NO innocent way for Meredith’s DNA to show up on the blade of the knife. DNA does not float through the air randomly. Nor would Knox carry it around with her in a cloud (I’m visualizing Pig Pen from the Snoopy comics) just because they shared a house.

Posted by carlos on 04/01/13 at 09:38 PM | #

Hey, starsdad, I think you hit it with your suggestion that Burleigh is trying to protect book sales. Many of her tweets lately have been plugs for her book. This “attack” smacks of desperation and self-interest. It won’t convince any “thinking” people though.

Posted by carlos on 04/01/13 at 09:48 PM | #

Hi Carlos

There must necessarily have been [405] two knives at the scene of the crime [Massei Translation p377]

Posted by Cardiol MD on 04/02/13 at 12:18 AM | #

Thank you Cardiol

Posted by carlos on 04/02/13 at 09:41 AM | #

Hi themachine. If this had been a situation where someone had simply walked up and stabbed a willing human being, there still would have been scratches, knicks, and marks on the knife other than what you would find from normal use. From the reports of the night Meredith was murdered, there was a violent struggle and multiple stab wounds.  The body had skin (not as fragile as you might think) as well as bone, muscle, and tendons. A violent struggle would have allowed for the knife to be marked or possibly the tip broken off or blade chipped.  Having worked in surgery as well as living on a working farm where we deal with butchering our own meat (not trying to be morbid or offend - it’s just a fact of life) there are ALWAYS knicks, scratches, chips, blade breakage, and so forth.  I have even seen surgical scalpels break in two during an initial c-section incision. Things happen in a controlled environment so it is feasible to expect damage to a blade during a violent struggle with three to four people wrestling then multiple (in the 40s) stab wounds resulting in death. 

I also took yesterday afternoon to go to our local police department where they have a display of weapons confiscated from criminals after their court cases have completed. They are locked in cases but you can still see that the knife blades have been used and abused. The only ones that looked “new” were ones that had not been used in actual crimes but were just carried by the criminal. 

Hi carlos and thank you. I definitely do not wish to waste anyone’s time, which is why I asked if there was a “kiddie pool” available 😊 .  I do understand that people from both sides use these sites to promote their point of view and will try to ignore what does not apply to me.

And thank you M!  Your kindness is awesome!

Posted by TruthMatters on 04/02/13 at 11:50 AM | #

Hi TruthMatters,

It isn’t a fact of life that there always nicks, scratches, chips, blade breakage etc on blades. Please don’t make up facts. There weren’t 40 stabs wounds. There were three knife wounds to Meredith’s neck and some tiny defensive wounds to her hands.

Posted by The Machine on 04/02/13 at 12:12 PM | #

themachine - International sites are reporting 40 stab wounds.
BBC article “The Leeds University student was found with more than 40 knife wounds on her body, including a deep gash to the throat”
NBC Story “The half-naked body of her roommate, Briton Meredith Kercher, was found with 40 stab wounds and a deep gash in her throat in the apartment she shared with Knox in Perugia, Italy.”
Otago daily news in NZ ” with more than 40 wounds and a deep gash in the throat,”

As for knicks and scratches, so simply cleaning a knife causes damages, but a violent physical attack does not.  Right.

Posted by TruthMatters on 04/02/13 at 05:55 PM | #

Hi TruthMatters,

These three reports are wrong about this. Please read the translation of the Massei report. It can be downloaded from PMF:

I also recommend reading the articles of Andrea Vogt and Barbie Nadeau. They are both fluent in Italian, attended the court hearings and have access to the prosecution’s 10,000 pages of evidence.

A sharp tip of a knife can easily pierce human flesh. Using a Brillo Pad which is made from steel wool to vigorously scrub a knife could lead to faint scratch marks on the blade. It isn’t rocket science.

Posted by The Machine on 04/02/13 at 06:15 PM | #


The PMF translation reads, in relevant part:

c) The body presented a very large number of bruising and superficial wounds – around 43 counting those caused by her falling – some due to a pointed and cutting weapon, others to strong pressure: on the limbs, the mouth, the nose, the left cheek, and some superficial grazing on the lower neck, a wound on the left hand, several superficial knife wounds or defence wounds on the palm and thumb of the right hand, bruises on the right elbow and forearm, ecchymosis on the lower limbs, on the front and inside of the left thigh, on the middle part of the right leg, and a deep knife wound which completely cut through the upper right thyroid artery fracturing the hyoid bone….

Posted by Cardiol MD on 04/02/13 at 06:36 PM | #

themachine, it does not take a brillo pad to scratch a blade.  A sponge can do it. All it takes is a piece of matter on the blade then a rubbing-type motion. I am not going to argue with you about whether a knife can cut skin - of course it can and I never said it could not - but knives are not as indestructible as you suggest nor is skin as fragile. 

Your massei report states the knife that caused the thyroid artery cut (the official cause of death) also struck the jawbone in another wound. Skin is soft but bone is not. A stabbing motion that plunges a knife deep enough to penetrate the layers of skin, muscle, tendons, and fibrous tissue then strike bone would have enough force behind it to cause damage to the blade.

We will simply have to agree to disagree about the knife because there are just too many unanswered questions about it for me since reading the info on this site. Why would they even keep this murder weapon yet dispose of their bloody clothing and the cellphones, plus the smaller knife used in the attack?

Posted by TruthMatters on 04/02/13 at 08:52 PM | #


It isn’t my Massei report. It’s an official court document.

According to Dr. Lalli, the hyoid bone is fragile and easily broken:

“...the hyoid bone is so easily broken and so small, so important but still so fragile that it could not possibly stop the thrust of a knife blade or a knife point.” (The Massei report, page 135).

This explains why the double DNA knife wasn’t damaged. 

Sollecito’s landlord surely would have known if the large knife was missing from the drawers. That might explain why the knife wasn’t disposed of.

Do you have any proof the smaller knife was disposed of?

Posted by The Machine on 04/02/13 at 09:11 PM | #

Hi Cardiol,

Thanks for the reference. I’ve read the translation and appreciate the access to it here. I was trying to answer TruthMatters with the only little bit of information I feel confident in arguing. And that is that regardless of what a knife would look like after “normal” use or even what it would be expected to look like under “normal” murder conditions (if that’s not an oxymoron… I don’t know what is…) there should be no “normal” traces of Meredith’s DNA on it. Does that make sense? I was trying to simplify 😊 No normal innocent way for a person’s DNA to appear even in the tiniest quantities on a blade that ostensibly she had never come into contact with. Is that right? I hope I’m not mistaken.

Posted by carlos on 04/03/13 at 01:23 AM | #

Well, to me, the most damning evidence regarding the knife was that, when the police found it in Solliceto’s house and asked him about it, he made up a story that Meredith had been to his house and that he must have pricked her finger accidentally with the knife when he was cooking (or something like that, it’s been a long time since I read this -so feel free to correct).  The fact that he would say that, when Meredith had never been to his house and barely knew him, if at all, indicates guilt to me. Why would he make up this lie if he wasn’t hiding something?

As far as why didn’t the killers throw the knife away—again, it seems to me, that since Solliceto apparently had a “thing” about knives and carried them with him everywhere, he might not have wanted to part with it because of this fetish. I doubt he was worried about his landlady. Getting chewed out by her was not in the same league as the trouble he was in.

Posted by NCKat on 04/03/13 at 03:40 AM | #

“In the first case, a single blow was apparently halted by the jawbone (4cm deep wound”  this is on page 371 of the Massei report reached by the link in this article, as well as located in several other places in the report.  Please notice the difference between *jawbone* and *hyoid bone*.

Regarding what you would “normally” expect to see in situations like this: There are specific traits associated with the difference in left and right handed attackers or those of different heights. Specific traits associated with serrated or smooth blade knives, different length blades.  There are specific traits in how the skin tears or cuts clean.  There are things that occur repeatedly in similar situations (no 2 situations are identical).  These are things that investigators look for because they help explain what happen. They are considered “normal” findings in certain settings.  You can attempt to belittle my statement all you want but it will not change the meaning behind it. There has to be a baseline to compare to as well (what you would expect to find in everday use), just as there are “expected” or “normal” findings during certain occurrences. 

As for the second knife, the massei report states more than one knife was used but a second knife was never found. This is either because A) someone disposed of it or B) it is still lying in a drawer at Meredith’s apartment, her boyfriend’s apartment, Raffaele’s apartment, etc. because the investigators did not test every single knife in all 3 locations.  It has been readily admitted that Meredith was in her boyfriend’s apartment “looking after the cat with a damaged ear” (AKA watering the half-dozen marijuana plants) and rudy was associated with Meredith’s boyfriend so why couldn’t he have stolen a knife from them or hid one in their apartment? Perhaps her boyfriend’s apartment is where the mysterious undigested mushroom in her stomach came from and she had even borrowed a knife from his apartment which was then used in the crime because it was handy and disposed of by rudy (or whomever) afterward. Without the extensive testing of all the knives in all 3 apartments, there is too much room for doubt.

NCKat, I first thought there was Meredith and Amanda’s blood on the knife too, which is why I felt the LCN testing and DNA testing was accurate and reliable. AFter reading the Massei report and the evidence here at True Justice, the knife blade was cleaned with bleach. There was no blood or blood traces on the blade. Blood is erased by bleach so how can a DNA test be reliable if it has also been exposed to bleach which destroys it, as well as only being 10 cells which constitutes very very very low count for testing? Can the LCN test still be considered reliable or is there room for doubt.

Also, why would Amanda and Raffaele have gone to all the trouble to scrub both apartments with bleach but leave obvious traces of blood in the hall and bathroom at Merediths, as well as a knife which they knew would be looked at as a possible murder weapon? Why leave obvious footprints on a bathmat in the bathroom?  Why transport a *kitchen* knife over to Meredith’s apartment to harm/frighten/kill her when Raffaele (by everyone’s admission) had an extensive knife collection, some of which would have been easier to transport and better suited to the task then risk transporting the knife back after she was dead?  As for Raffaele admitting Merdith’s DNA was on the knife because he knicked her while cooking - when you reread the statement, it appears to be made after many hours of interrogation and him being basically asked to imagine how it could have gotten there (if I am reading the entire interrogation transcript correctly - I will go back and reread tomorrow if time but please correct me if I’m wrong).

I came to this site completely believing that Amanda and Raffaele were at the very least knowledgeable about what happened and/or guilty of participating.  As I read the massei report and other evidence on this site and the perugia murder, I am not so convinced.

If they are guilty, then Meredith’s family should be allowed to choose, then mete out, what they feel is a fitting punishment. However, if they are innocent, then it does no one - especially Meredith in memorium - any good if they are wrongly imprisoned.

Posted by TruthMatters on 04/03/13 at 08:21 AM | #

Hi TruthMatters,

Are you being serious about suggesting that Meredith’s family mete out a fitting punishment? Forgive me but that seems to defeat the purpose of a civilized justice system.

Also, it seems like you are angry about something. Maybe I’m just reading in.

Posted by carlos on 04/03/13 at 09:33 AM | #

@Truth Matters,

You wrote:

“As for Raffaele admitting Merdith’s DNA was on the knife because he knicked her while cooking - when you reread the statement, it appears to be made after many hours of interrogation and him being basically asked to imagine how it could have gotten there (if I am reading the entire interrogation transcript correctly - I will go back and reread tomorrow if time but please correct me if I’m wrong).”

You’re wrong - again. Sollecito admitted that he had pricked Meredith’s hand whilst cooking in his prison diary. It’s a really good idea to get acquainted with the facts of the case otherwise you just embarrass yourself with ignorant comments like the one above.

The reason why Meredith’s DNA was still on the blade is that it had got caught in a groove on the blade and DNA is very resistant to bleach. It’s possible to identify someone’s DNA from one cell. Dr. Patrizia Stefanoni, Dr. Renato Biondo, the head of the DNA Unit of the Scientific Police, Professor Francesca Torricelli, former Caribinieri General Luciano Garofano and Professor Novelli have all confirmed that Meredith’s DNA was on the blade of the knife. Dr. Stefanoni analysed the traces on the knife six days after last handling Meredith’s DNA. This means that contamination couldn’t have occurred in the laboratory. Meredith had never been to Sollecito’s apartment, so contamination away from the laboratory was impossible. 

Who claimed the cottage and Sollecito’s apartment were cleaned with bleach?


Posted by The Machine on 04/03/13 at 10:27 AM | #

David Barrett has written an excellent article for The Daily Telegraph:

Please thank him for reminding the public that Meredith is the real victim and that Amanda Knox still stands accused of her murder via Twitter:


Posted by The Machine on 04/03/13 at 01:05 PM | #

@the machine - thanks for posting that link. An excellent article.

Posted by TruthWillOut on 04/03/13 at 01:24 PM | #

The David Barrett article deserves to be retweeted around the world.

Posted by Skeptical Bystander on 04/03/13 at 05:23 PM | #

carlos:  No, I am not angry. You must be inferring your personal feelings while reading.  As for the punishment, yes I am serious. If someone is found guilty beyond a shadow of doubt, I firmly believe the victim or their family be allowed to have say in the punishment. Say the victim was an advocate against the death penalty and instead promoted rehabilitation. Would it truly serve the victim justice if the perpetrator was killed via the death penalty?  If the victim believed in “an eye for an eye” would it serve justice if they were given life in prison? 

Justice is supposed to be about making amends to those wronged so shouldn’t the punishment fit the victim’s beliefs/wishes?

“It’s a really good idea to get acquainted with the facts of the case otherwise you just embarrass yourself with ignorant comments like the one above.”..... That is just plain rude, machine.  I did not call your comment about the hyoid bone ignorant and you have been here a heck of a lot longer than I.  As for the bleach, there are multiple references in the massei report as well as the prosecutions case about the infamous purchasing of bleach and the “smell of bleach from Sollecito’s flat” along with hallway and bathroom at Meredith’s being cleaned with bleach. To pretend otherwise is baffling and an attempt to mislead.

Removing the influence of this specific case and doing a general internet search reveals that DNA is degraded by heat and bleach. We even used a peroxide based bleach to clean the OR after surgery.

RE: contamination of DNA in a lab. Nothing is “impossible”.  There are far too many cases around the world of DNA labs and police officers contaminating evidence and cases being overturned because of it. No one is perfect. Mistakes are made every day.  If there was no chance of contamination then why were the 3 other male DNA profiles on the bra clasp not checked and verified against all the male police, lab workers, and the boys downstairs to rule out contamination? 

And there is NO disrespect to Meredith in trying to find out who really killed her. YES! Meredith is the ultimate victim in this case because she lost her life but that does not mean everyone should stop seeking the truth because she is dead. If it were my daughter, I would consider it a slap in the face to not know beyond a shadow of doubt who killed her and it would be heartbreaking to put someone innocent behind bars.  And yes, before you make the remark, I HAVE lost a close family member to a violent crime. I do not pretend to know what Meredith’s family are going through, just as they would not know what I have gone through, but I have had to come to terms with a violent crime situation. The only way I was able to do so is because the real perps were found and paid for it. That is what I hope for Meredith’s friends and family.

Posted by TruthMatters on 04/03/13 at 06:03 PM | #

I really think you have your mind made up, Truth Matters, and are trying to stretch facts into malleable forms onto which you can project your desired outcomes.  I think Occam’s Razor applies here that is “assumptions used to explain a thing not be multiplied beyond necessity.”  I don’t want to belittle the obvious effort you have put into trying to understand this case, but most of us have been reading and discussing and analyzing this since it first happened and we came to our conclusions gradually over a long period of time, following the evidence as it unfolded.   

To me, it’s not just a question of pouncing on a presumed factoid and arguing it to death with all kinds of tortured reasoning, but it is looking at the situation as a whole.  Knox and Sollecito repeatedly lied. When they were found by the police in the apartment the morning after the death, they went into the bedroom and called various family members, asking whether they should call the police when the police were standing in the next room.  Knox had actually called her mother in Seattle in the middle of the night (in Seattle) to tell her that she had come home and found the apartment in disarray and Meredith’s door locked and she was all stressed out and what should she do?  This contradicted everything she said later. She also claimed later not to remember this call, which occurred before Knox could have known that there was a problem with Meredith, later telling the police that she had taken a shower in the apartment and that it was normal for Meredith to lock her door (her other roommates said M NEVER locked her door).  If she were innocent, why would she do this?.  In fact, her mother remembered the phone call clearly and told the police about it in detail before she realized that it was damning.  Even her mother couldn’t understand why she called at that time and why she didn’t remember it and their conversation about it after the fact was recorded secretly while she was visiting Amanda in prison. 

Then there was the police station events. Knox acted like nothing had happened after the murder. She was in a gay mood at the police station, turning cartwheels and making out publicly with Sollecito.  When interrogated by the police, however, she accused an innocent man of the crime and said she had been at the scene of the crime and knew that he was the one. She even wrote a follow up confession on her own initiative stating that she was there.  When he was arrested, she did not recant her accusation.  He only got off because he had an airtight alibi. 

The evidence goes on and on. This isn’t even counting the DNA evidence, the witnesses statements, Sollecito’s not backing up her alibi and on and on and on.  I fear, Truth Matters, that you are not seeing the forest for the trees.  If we appear rude to you, it’s because it’s annoying to have someone come in late and start arguing the case from the beginning and bringing up things that the people here have covered in minute detail over a long period of time.  I’m sure you can understand how that might be aggravating.  Thanks.

Posted by NCKat on 04/03/13 at 07:08 PM | #


Judge Massei doesn’t claim Amanda Knox bought bleach on 2 November 2007 or that the cottage was cleaned with bleach. On the contrary, he argued that the fluorescence given off by Luminol was due to the presence of blood, not bleach (284). To support his argument that bleach had not been used to clean the cottage, he pointed out no-one entering the house had not noticed any smell of bleach (283) and noted that if bleach had been used to clean the house, many traces would have been highlighted by the Luminol (284). There has been no attempt to mislead. I know the facts of the case and you clearly don’t.

Alberto Intini, the head of the Italian police forensic science unit, pointed out that unless contamination has been proved, it doesn’t exist.

Professor Novelli also pointed out that contamination has to be proved:

“The contaminant must be demonstrated, where it originated from and where it is. The hook contaminated by dust? It’s more likely for a meteorite to fall and bring this court down to the ground.”

Conti and Vecchiotti and the defence experts never proved there had been any contamination.

Galati made the following common sense observation in his appeal:

“It is evident that the “non-exclusion” of the occurrence of a certain phenomenon is not equivalent to affirming its occurrence, nor even that the probability that it did occur.” (The Galati appeal, page 57).

He goes on to explain that unless there is proof of contamination of the knife and bra clasp, you can’t simply claim there was in order to nullify this evidence:

“...if one is not able to [67] affirm where, how and when they would have happened, they cannot enter into a logical-juridical reasoning aimed at nullifying elements already acquired, above all if scientific in nature.” (p57).

Do you have any proof that there were three other DNA male profiles on the bra clasp? There were some peaks at LCN levels which were unaccounted for. It’s not the same thing.

Posted by The Machine on 04/03/13 at 07:17 PM | #

I personally don’t find it annoying and don’t see anything wrong with people like TruthMatters to pose some of these questions - these issues are going to be all be out there in the media anyway, or brought up in the next trial, and the answers are a good review for those of us who don’t remember every detail of the case. We have plenty of time to talk about all of these case details for the next six -nine months, or longer, until the case goes to retrial in 2014.

Posted by believing on 04/04/13 at 04:11 AM | #

Hi TruthMatters,

I am impressed-by, and respect, what you wrote in your Comment of 04/03/13 at 11.03 AM.

We both seem to have worked in ORs; I have seen many neck problems, including tracheostomies, indwelling-ventilator-tube and tracheal issues, damage to carotid arteries, to jugular veins, plus stab-wounds near, and to the heart.  The lack of damage to the carotids and jugulars in this case suggests to me that the attackers knew enough to avoid them, but not enough to avoid what they did do.

As these experiences have taught us, both the jawbone and the hyoid bone are mobile, which is why we can chew, talk, smile laugh, and sing, the way that we do. This mobility also helped Meredith to scream the way she did when something caused her to do so, before the fatal stab removed her ability to phonate at all.

You also wrote in your Comment of 04/02/13 at 01:52 PM:

“Your massei report states the knife that caused the thyroid artery cut (the official cause of death) also struck the jawbone in another wound. Skin is soft but bone is not. A stabbing motion that plunges a knife deep enough to penetrate the layers of skin, muscle, tendons, and fibrous tissue then strike bone would have enough force behind it to cause damage to the blade.”

As you indicated, this subject is addressed in other parts of the Massei Report, where on p371 is written:
”…a single blow was apparently halted by the jawbone…”

The statement that a blow could be “apparently halted” by Meredith’s jawbone is at best a figure of speech, and the quotes of Prof Cingolani on page 152 of the Massei Translation clearly indicate that any cause and effect inference from the phrase “apparently halted” “did not…. have elements of certainty to establish” it was “stopped by the jawbone.”:

Prof Cingolani “did not, however, have elements of certainty to establish that the blade which had caused the wound 4 centimetres deep had stopped at the said depth because [it was] stopped by the jawbone.”

Maybe there is a Judicial, translational, or typographical glitch and “by” the jawbone should have been “near” the jawbone.

Skin is soft and bone is harder but there is no way that the knife striking the jawbone or hyoid bone would halt the knife in this case, they would just roll with the blow, depending on the angle of attack.

Furthermore, contact between the knife and jawbone or hyoid bone would not mark the knife because living-bone is softer than the knife.

When your pet gnaws on a non-living cow-bone, neither the bone nor your pet’s teeth can bend; both your pet’s teeth and the bone can be broken, and the bone gets scratches on it because it is still softer than the teeth, but your pet’s teeth do not get scratches on them, because they are harder even than the non-living bone.

If someone is stabbed in the back with a kitchen carving knife, penetrating ribs on its way to the heart, the knife may have no scratches at all, nor show any signs of damage caused by that action.

Any implication in the statement quoted above that stabbing Meredith’s neck with enough force to penetrate the layers of her neck and then strike bone would have the effect of signs of damage to the knife-blade, is a mistaken implication.

It is an old rule of materials-physics that a softer substance cannot mark a harder substance.
[To some people this may be counter to their intuition, so I have passed it by an eminent MIT physicist, and he agrees with me that the knife blade would not show signs of damage caused by the stabbing in this case.]

Posted by Cardiol MD on 04/04/13 at 10:40 PM | #

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