Francesco Sollecito’s Testimony

Key to abbreviations

GCM:  Giancarlo Massei Judge Chairman

FS:  Francesco Sollecito Raffaele Sollecito’s father

GB:  Giulia Bongiorno Solicited defense lawyer Attorney

MC:  Manuela Comodi Prosecutor Public Ministry

SP:  Serena Perna Counsel for Stephanie Kercher Attorney

GM:  Giuliano Mignini Prosecutor Public Ministry

CDV:  Carlo Dalla Vedova Knox defense lawyer Attorney

Translation via Google

raffaele and dad2

EXAMINATION

The witness Sollecito Francesco is introduced….

GCM:

He is the father of Sollecito Raffaele.

FS:

Yup.

GCM:

In relation to this particular bond that exists with the current defendant, he has the power to abstain from the deposition, can use this faculty in the ways that ….

FS:

No, no, I intend to lay down, I will answer the questions.

francesco and curt

GCM:

So giving up on this faculty he witnesses, becomes a witness to all the other witnesses for whom this particular bond of kinship does not exist with one of the defendants and so he is required to answer all the questions and answer by saying the The truth when it comes to the case and the Court should assess that it has not been answered, it is exposed to the responsibilities provided for by the law, must read the statement of commitment and give its generality.

Aware of the moral and legal responsibility I assume with my deposition, I am committed to telling the whole truth and not hiding anything from my knowledge.

Sollecito Francesco was born in Giovinazzo on June 4, 1948.

GB:

Dr. Sollecito what activity is currently doing.

FS:

I am a surgeon and specialist in urology and legal medicine.

GB:

Are you Raffaele Sollecito’s father?

FS:

Yup.

GB:

How many children do you have?

FS:

Two.

GB:

Can you tell us the situation of your family, that is if Raffaele’s mother is alive or dead.

FS:

Raffaele’s mother died on June 20, 2005.

GB:

She kind of relationship has with her children at the attendance level of phone contacts of confidence.

FS:

They are their father, their friend, their confidant, their sincere confidant, because for the good that I want to them I can not advise them for the best.

GB:

She is aware that Raffaele Sollecito his son had obviously moved to Perugia for what reasons Raffaele did before he was arrested.

FS:

As I made my point in the first answer, I know of my son all because any decision he has taken has obviously been consulted and confided with me, so he came to Perugia because he wanted to do this experience of autonomy and start telling his life A little far from home, and we preferred, we chose the enrollment at the university here in Perugia, because in Perugia there is a college called Onaosi, which is a medical insurance college, so there are some Conditions for the physician’s children to be there. So we chose Perugia of common accord for these reasons.

FS:

Yes, as I told you I am, I was his confidant, so he told me everything.

GB:

What did he tell you about Amanda?

FS:

He had told me immediately that he had met this girl with whom he had a good understanding, who [he] treated her and cuddled her as if she were a little girl, and told me some episodes that we would say a bit nice about their relationship.

GB:

By a funny episode what do you mean?

FS:

He once told me, for example, that he had washed her hair, that had dried her hair, in short, that is, caressing it, let’s say.

GB:

How long have you been talking about Amanda?

FS:

For a few days, I can not remember the exact day, however, for a very short time.

GB:

So from these conversations you had with son noted a particular affection for Amanda?

FS:

Certainly, I knew there was a good story.

GB:

But in the past did Raffaele have talked to other girls in these terms and what kind of relationship had he had?

FS:

In these terms he had never spoken to me, he had spoken to me earlier, but I talked to him several months earlier, about another story, but very short with an Italian girl this time, I assume I do not remember that it was Brindisi from our parts , Apulian, but he did not speak it with any emphasis, he did not talk about how Amanda absolutely spoke. Besides, that story was short if I did not remember three or four days anymore.

GB:

When she says she did not talk about how she talked about Amanda, would you like to better explain this concept?

FS:

Because Amanda talked to me every day when we felt for one reason or another, he had told me that they had been on a trip to Assisi told me that very evening the phone call she was referring to, that they would do the next morning A trip to Gubbio, they planned a trip to Gubbio.

GB:

During that one-night phone call you talked about this movie they had seen at the cinema, about the trip to Gubbio, she knew what her son’s evening programs were.

FS:

No, he had not spoken to me about his evening programs.

GB:

She knew who she was that night.

FS:

Yes, I knew he was with Amanda certainly.

GB:

She is aware that Raffaele Sollecito his son had obviously moved to Perugia for what reasons Raffaele did before he was arrested.

FS:

As I made my point in the first answer, I know of my son all because any decision he has taken has obviously been consulted and confided with me, so he came to Perugia because he wanted to do this experience of autonomy and start telling his life A little far from home, and we preferred, we chose the enrollment at the university here in Perugia, because in Perugia there is a college called Onaosi, which is a medical insurance college, so there are some Conditions for the physician’s children to be there. So we chose Perugia of common accord for these reasons.

GB:

When was Raffaele moving to Perugia?

FS:

Immediately after graduation, then in 2002.

GB:

Then Raffaele was studying that faculty reminds him?

FS:

Computer Science and has won an Erasmus scholarship after the first year and always agreed with me decided to do this new experience and therefore also choose as a venue for the performance of the Erasmus Germany.

GB:

But Raffaele then graduated.

FS:

Yup.

GB:

When you graduated.

FS:

He graduated in jail in February 2008.

GB:

But why ever when it was supposed to graduate instead.

FS:

November 15, 2007.

GB:

So the day of graduation was already in jail Raffaele.

FS:

The day of graduation was already in prison.

GB:

She said she had an intense relationship and even a continuous phone call with her son, more or less how many times a day did you feel, did you feel?

FS:

We felt every day several times a day.

GB:

Now let me ask you if she remembers, in particular, what has happened in certain days, I will try to refer to the days immediately preceding that of the corpse of the corpse. November 2007 if she remembers having heard with her son, and in particular if she remembers a phone call that is on the tabs at 20.42 and what she remembers if she remembers the phone call.

FS:

I call the phone very well, it’s a phone call I made to him right after leaving the cinema, I saw a nice movie with my wife, I think if I do not remember well …

GB:

Excuse her has a new companion.

FS:

I have my wife, I married on September 6, 2005.

GB:

Then?

GB:

That night she over this call you talked about the most and less, did other phone calls had other phone contacts sent sms.

FS:

I sent my son an sms before I went to sleep, I was also going to call him but knowing he was still with this girl and having had a long conversation with him a short time ago, I did not consider it appropriate to break the notes with him and I sent them Just a good morning message, I had nothing to say to it anyway.

GB:

Was Goodnight’s a thing she often did?

FS:

I was pretty often, of course when … so many times not to call for not being too present I would just send a good morning message to both Raffaele and Vanessa to my other daughter.

GB:

There are also sms to his daughter of the same tenor.

FS:

Yes, but of course I do not keep them all when I send them back many times.

GB:

This message to which you refer I have asked for the production, taking a message from a technical advisor, now I will show it to you and tell me that you will confirm the document that was produced in the event, if this sms at least the Tenor that she remembers the sms she sent. This is a photograph we had produced as President as you remember, I do not remember the fairy of the hearing, it is the sound that was produced in photography whose content is “good night” sent by Raffaele Sollecito’s father to the evening of one November, then regardless of when and how it came, if you remember that this was the tenor of the sms.

FS:

Yes, yes, it’s my phone and it’s my message.

GB:

She recognizes her device as her message.

FS:

Sure, but there should be one if I do not remember another photo where there is also the time and date.

GB:

It was the next question, now I always show her his cell phone, and in the display there is a time if she is also confirming this, if this is the photo she has made me with her technical consultant.

FS:

Yes, right.

GCM:

It can tell the time since he recognized it.

FS:

The timetable that is written here is 00:10 but I honestly remember to have sent you an excerpt before this now sincerely, but I can not tell you why my phone was registered this time, I am not competent in the matter .

GB:

She feels her son one November at 20.42.

FS:

Yup.

GB:

Then send this evening sms or she remembers a timetable.

FS:

Before midnight I find myself here shortly after midnight.

GB:

After that when Raffaele suffers and why he suffers.

FS:

I called him the next morning around 9am and 9pm and I called him back because I knew my son’s habits when he did not have university assignments usually slept late in the morning, but that morning I knew he ought to Go to do this trip to Gubbio and I wanted to know for my curiosity as I had been with him in the months, in the previous times I came to Perugia to find my son with my wife we ​​had been together with us three, both in Assisi At Gubbio, so it seemed he wanted to go back to the stages of the beautiful experiences we had lived together, so when he told me that night he wanted to go to Gubbio with Amanda I was pleasantly curious, so on the morning at 9am and twenty telephones Knowing that he was in habit, as I had already said he woke up rather late, because I thought he had already been up for hiking.

GB:

In that phone call she found her messy confused son.

FS:

No, no, my son slept, I immediately realized that he was still in bed to sleep, so I stopped talking, I said, “Well, I do not think I’ll call you later.”

GB:

When it was then that Raffaele felt that day.

FS:

I called her around 12 and a half less than a quarter a minute.

GB:

In this additional call …

FS:

Always with the same intention of knowing more or less when they finally left and instead he told me that he had gone to Amanda’s house that something that had been a bit worried him had come to him because they had found some signs of illness for which they thought That there was a theft.

GB:

His son’s hypothesis then when you heard about the phone that morning was it a question of which one?

FS:

That there was a broken glass, there were signs, then a break in a room in this house, and they thought there was a thief who had done a theft.

GB:

She gave some advice to her son, he said to do something.

FS:

Yes, let’s say that the first thing I came to tell him is to feel with my sister, since my daughter is a carabinieri officer, to ask her how to behave, for us it is not very important that there are some Theft in the house, because we live in a place where unfortunately almost every day happens that there are these thefts in the houses, so let’s say, although obviously being somewhat alarmed by what my son told him, I suggested him to look a bit in I go around quietly and then call Vanessa to know how it was to behave.

GB:

After this call you know that Raffaele was called in the following days several times in the Questura we have interceptions among the acts, the court then will see these transcriptions, I believe they are among those we have asked today transcription, I wanted To know whether Raffaele was worried or whether she was worried about these continuous summons in the Questura.

FS:

No, Raffaele was not worried at all and consequently could not even give me a particular concern, he told me that he was often called to the Questura, so many times he went there alone with Amanda for so many times, because he wanted to be heard by inquirers for Knowing just how things went, in short, having some information, and I did not find anything strange in this.

GB:

When Raffaele Raised when one of his statements and interrogators was found on a knife, why did Raffaele have a knife?

FS:

He used to put a knife in his pocket, but this is a fact that dates back to his adolescence because we had a country villa and he had fun with a knife to engrave something on tree barks or to remove barks from pine trees To make objects, to model objects, then more or less from that age on had taken this habit to carry this knife.

GB:

In the case of accusative hypotheses it is assumed a theft at Meredith’s home I would like to know what his son’s economic conditions are.

FS:

The current economic conditions of my son are certainly good, because he has inherited some property for which he has some income because of the premature departure of his mother.

The management of this annuity, however, was obviously entrusted to me, but of course I have never sent him what he was saying I do not say indispensable but also appropriate for the performance of his or her life in Perugia or anyway, University activity.

GB:

There are also eavesdropping on it, and then the court will obviously examine it, you can tell me whether it was even in those days that she pressed Raffaele to take the money she had deposited, what she recalls.

FS:

Yes, but it was something I did not do, I did only at that time, I did quite often, because Raffaele just because he did not have this need for money, he needed it when he needed it without having to face so many problems.

GB:

Did your son smoke spinelli take amazing drugs?

FS:

I certainly know that there was this opportunity at the age of 17 I came to know simply because a Prefecture had arrived at home for me to report to Raffaele on the day of the day In order to be heard about it and I had been careful in that occasion apart from the fact that I was a bit angry at this issue to inform a lawyer because it was still necessary to inform the prefecture if it was possible to postpone this date and this Now to another, because he was in Perugia to study and so he could not attend when he was called, then the last of these last spinelli I heard after I knew him after his arrest.

GB:

But she knew Raffaele’s friends and knew who was here in Perugia, or the Perugia environment she did not know.

FS:

No, no, I knew Raffaele’s many friends from the college, and even friends who lived a bit on his last year’s experience, that is, they had appartments on their own, one in particular he was just living alongside him they had prepared a Examing together, we went to dinner together when I came to Perugia to let me know her friends.

GB:

She had ever met these friends Rudy Ghedè.

FS:

No, I never heard him call.

GB:

Raffaele has never spoken to Rudy Ghedè.

FS:

No, I’ve never heard of mentioning, of course, of all the news we all know that came out in the newspapers.

GB:

Listen, but at this point I would like you to focus on another profile in this process, it turned out that you would have passed a dossier to Telenorba for this reason she is under trial, can tell me what it is.

FS:

We have been myself and like me all my family, we have always been very convinced of Raffaele’s absolute innocence and his complete extraneousness to this terrible affair, so from the very first moment we have always worked hard in full respect of the legality of seeking All that could be useful for him to get rid of him, so when we got through the lawyers even the movies of Meredith’s first home inspection, we just scanned them and we found, we got both the first and second movies site inspection.

GB:

How did you get them?

FS:

Through Maori’s attorneys who had made a regular request to the PM, the Attorney. So we just looked at them and analyzed them and we noticed some really amazing differences and changes between the first and the second survey, and this seemed to us very relevant because it seemed that there had been a complete reversal of the state of the sites and we Prepared the so-called Dossier to prove that it was practically composed of photographs that we had obtained from the video with still images and showed the situation during the first inspection of the various rooms and the situation of the same rooms after the first inspection to the second inspection.

GB:

But by dossier I want to know what you mean.

FS:

That is, show the difference that there was the situation between the first and the second inspection.

GB:

You have added documents, you have …

FS:

No, no, no, we were limited to objective data only, we did not add or remove anything, but I kept it in this, because I consider it quite accurate to make sure that there was a date on each frame, Now when these things were done, the date and time when the shooting was made and therefore to prevent anyone from refuting the authenticity of the truthfulness of what we were trying to demonstrate.

GB:

She remembers what was the element that brought her son into custody.

FS:

Yes, the attribution of a footprint left by a person in Meredith’s Room at Raffaele Sollecito.

GB:

Within these interceptions, among other things, there are comments that are made to say no to you personally about the police and they also refer to this episode, the reasons for this, some strong expressions may Explain what you can imagine.

FS:

First of all, I want to point out that I believe that our telephone conversations are still private conversations, but beyond this as you may have noticed unless it has been possible to hear until now those phone calls I have never used any particular expression Forbidding the investigators and even less of the prosecution or the public prosecutor in particular. Regardless of this, it is clear that we could only be adrift if so we can say that there were, gross errors were made in giving assignments that had cost and still cost the jail to my son.

GB:

No, sorry for now we were talking about the eavesdropping of shoe imprint.

FS:

I refer to the shoe’s footprint, because what I had been able to guess on the footprint was that incorrect attribution of the footprint of Raffaele’s shoe and created the reason for the GIP to validate Raffaele’s hold. When we noted that there was this mistake, that that shoe could not be attributed to Raffaele in any way and instead the report of the Scientific Police said that it was compatible not only as a model but also as a brand and measure, we have Really disconcerted, it was enough to count the number of circles that were reproduced on that imprint so that I could easily guess that that shoe could not be compatible with my son’s, and yet Raffaele was still in jail.

MC:

President, I do not want to interrupt the exam, but I would like to recall that the witness is a witness, though a qualified witness from the very close kinship and has agreed to answer, but must observe the rules of all the witnesses and instead it seems to me to be I did not interrupt it before, however, but I would like to recall that being accused, now almost imputed because it was achieved by the Article 415a Notice, I do not think that in relation to the Telenorba dossier, I do not think it can Freely refer to it here.

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GB:

President then I immediately tell them that if they had not been asked, that is, it seems to me a little discretion, on the one hand the public prosecutor asks to be intercepted, we hear the interception, in these interceptions they feel the comments of the family members on Telenorba On the police on the shoe print, we oppose that interception saying they are not part of the process, they are acquired, at this point since they are acquired I must explain that the complaints refer to a shoe imprint that is now processively of Ghedè , I think it’s almost necessary otherwise we did not get the material, that is what it is.

GCM:

As far as the public prosecutor’s opposition is concerned, it may be reminded of the witness and applies to all witnesses that witnesses can not, unless we have a specific qualification on the specific subject so that in answering can not distinguish technical knowledge But the fact that this is not the case, but this is not the case, it is not possible to give an assessment but only to follow the facts, as far as the other aspect is concerned, raised by the public prosecutor about the position of the witness still under investigation According to what emerges from it, it should be noted that the questions attended to intercepted conversations that somehow have been asked, and in other respects the witness on these aspects may still use the faculty of not responding to what he does not and already so can continue.

LM:

Do you know if you have any problems with your child with the sink, there have been leaks in the water spill.

FS:

No, I did not know no, he told me if I did not remember the night of the phone call he was, while he was washing dishes or doing something in the kitchen he had poured water on the ground, yes.

LM:

You know if the landlord intervened by a plumber.

FS:

Yes, of course, it has intervened now how I did not know it, I know perfectly well that my son called the owner and she called a plumber and then went to fix it, of course.

LM:

So there was a second hydraulic operation.

FS:

There was definitely a second operation to remedy probably no previous repairs.

LM:

Thank you.

MC:

The plumber’s call from the apartment owner for the second time, the second call when there was.

FS:

I can not tell it, because it is one thing that has managed my son directly.

MC:

But before or after the murder.

FS:

Before.

MC:

Before the murder.

FS:

Yes, yes, before the murder.

MC:

So the plumber twice came, went to Raffaele’s home.

FS:

Yes, but there are two different plumbing.

MC:

So even the water loss from the kitchen tube has happened before the murder.

FS:

Yup.

MC:

She told you.

FS:

Yes, the murder had happened earlier.

MC:

How many days before?

FS:

I can not tell.

MC:

Did you usually send sms to your son?

FS:

No.

MC:

She ever sent it to me.

FS:

I sent him some time.

MC:

Only that night.

FS:

I explain to you, maybe I can explain it better to say this I called my son mainly with the cell phone, because the contract that I with my manager allows me to have four free phone numbers, which I can call at any time and one of these four numbers It corresponds exactly to my son’s number, so I often and happily called him on my cellphone because I did not even pay for the phone call, obviously when I do not remember well if I did not pay for it if it did not exceed a certain amount of time Or else but I did not mind this problem, I sent the sms to both my son and my daughter when I had nothing to say or nothing to add to the phone calls that I had previously made, because as I said before all ‘Bongiorno lawyer I’m with my son and with my daughter I felt every day and even several times a day, so there was no reason to say it was over quotation marks. So sometimes I could send out simple goodnight messages.

MC:

Do you remember before the night of the late evening of November 1st when he sent another sms to his son?

FS:

No, I do not remember it.

MC:

If a few days earlier, a few weeks earlier, a few months earlier.

FS:

I honestly do not remember it, because I told you something that happened very slowly, so I can not remember it.

MC:

That night she said she had already heard her son at what time?

FS:

At 20:40 around nine o’clock less than a quarter of an evening as soon as I left the cinema.

MC:

So was he in the street when he called him?

FS:

Yup.  article-1192548-053C7985000005DC-568_306x423

MC:

And Raffaele where was he?

FS:

I do not know.

MC:

She did not ask.

FS:

No.

MC:

At 23:14 when she sends the sms where she was.

FS:

In my house, I was going to bed.

MC:

He knows when he received his son sms.

FS:

From the tabs I could read at 6:02 am the next morning.

MC:

She usually answered her to sms.

FS:

No.

MC:

Did not he call him at home?

FS:

Very occasionally, I already explained to him the reason why it was not the case, I know that my wife occasionally called him from fixed to fixed, that is, from my fixed-line telephone at Rafael’s fixed.

MC:

When the next day she said she called him the next morning and called her son to what time, around what time?

FS:

Around 09.20 – 09.30.

MC:

And where was your son?

FS:

She was in bed to sleep for how she responded she was still sleeping.

MC:

Then call him back?

FS:

Around one less than a quarter.

MC:

What does it tell you?

FS:

I first asked him if he had gone on a trip with Amanda to Gubbio so he had told me the previous night and then he told me they had not yet got off, because Amanda had discovered this thing at her home and he had gone To see, he realized that there was this failure for which they thought there was a theft.

MC:

As she answered her where Raffaele was.

FS:

He told me he was at Meredith’s house.

MC:

That was at Meredith’s House in Della Pergola Street.

FS:

Yup.

MC:

What did she say to her more?

FS:

I advised him to check to check out well and then to call my daughter to ask her how to behave.

MC:

And then in the other phone calls, because there have been many.

FS:

Well afterwards he called me to tell me that there was a tragedy and so we were all afraid worried and we tried to know something more, so there were a number of subsequent calls, but always after he told me that you are not It was a theft, but much more.

MC:

Can report what, what particulars …

FS:

That Amanda’s friend had been killed.

MC:

So did she say so?

FS:

More or less, now I can honestly say the words sincerely two years away, but the sense was obvious.

MC:

Did your son love the knives?

FS:

No, he did not like the knives.

MC:

But he did not.

FS:

Yes, I had already said it before, it was a habit to carry it around, so much so that knowing that it had this habit in one of the many phone calls we made from the moment Meredith’s death occurred When she was arrested, I also advised her not to carry it around, because I knew that he was so accustomed to holding it in my pocket, even if she did not realize she had so many times.

MC:

But how many were there.

FS:

I have never contacted them, I can say that someone bought it together from the internet, because they are also collectible knives, and those handcrafts hand made.

MC:

All right.

GM:

You remember how many consultants you have had from now on.

FS:

Do not mind at this moment, no, if I have time to think about it.

GB:

No, but I object to these questions, because we have to make a counter exam on our articulations, now determine how many consultants and how many lawyers right is inadmissible.

GCM:

The opposition is welcomed.

GM:

You said that you have tried to, you have been activated to help Raffaele’s position before no.

FS:

sure

GB:

No, I was told by the opposition that I could not ask any questions about the investigation carried out at Telenorba, but I limited my examination when the intervention was done, then If it starts again I have to start again, I was told not to open that forehead and I was attentive.

GCM:

That aspect had only been highlighted if maybe the defense wanted to proceed on those circumstances it would have been necessary to appoint a defender and hear the heads in the assisted forms, so it was over with Telenorba, but now the question did not happen to me.

GM:

I only wanted to know if you have contacted politicians in this activity.

FS:

But no.

GB:

It is opposed to all these, this story of politicians has once again nothing to do with this process, so if we have to open a whole series of speeches that only serve to openly mediate an aspect that has no procedural relevance we are not interested in under Process is Raffaele are asked questions about the process.

GCM:

Sorry the head is not common to other parts too, so the area on which you can ask, maybe determined or how much the defense has indicated in the text list, and what has been the subject of questions and this may not have been Touched like appearance, so maybe only on the questions that were the subject of the examination the counter exam is just so called.

GM:

I have no other questions.

SP:

Two clarifications to the question asked before the Maori lawyer did, except that I understood correctly, in the phone call that she says she entertains her son on the first November at 20: 42-45, if I did not understand , Raffaele had already told her the problem again of the sink that lost water?

FS:

No. Then I said that in that phone call he had told me that he had poured water on the ground.

SP:

He referred to the sink.

FS:

Yes, it’s clear to the ground water that came out of the kitchen sink yes.

GCM:

In that phone call if you can specify which …

FS:

In the phone call of 20:43 that he is at home obviously at that moment told me he had had …

GCM:

On the one of November.

FS:

Yes, he had told me that he had had this problem with the drain of the washbasin, he had had it at that moment, that day that evening that was something he had had there, I first explained that the problem he had detected all The beginning was not the drain, but it was of the tap, it was the mixer that did not go because no hot water came out and the water came out without pressure, so he called the plumber to solve this problem, The plumber has replaced the faucet, I probably assume, but I’m not a plumber, but it’s clear that in order to be able to replace the faucet to a washbasin, however, it has to act underneath the washbasin and may even have a punctuation between quotes with drainage. Maybe the problem of discharge may have occurred later or because the plumber has packed us, or because it came out has occurred as a problem with the previous one.

SP:

So basically there had been this problem of sink wash that had occurred?

FS:

Yes, this water loss.

SP:

She spoke before the stop that was made to Raffaele she knows and she referred to the shoe’s footprint, but she knows if the public prosecutor has still considered other items before signing the decree or not, Shoe imprint on which she has already replied.

FS:

I remember that Raffaele had been seized in his shoes and two knives, I remember anything else.

SP:

I have no other questions.

CDV:

Just a clarification about his daughter and the phone call that has intervened between Raffaele and her sister, is her daughter bigger than Raffaele?

FS:

Yup.

CDV:

Relationships are between Raffaele and her sister.

FS:

Good ones, they were seen and felt often before.

CDV:

She at one point thought she would suggest calling her sister to Raffaele.

FS:

Yup.

CDV:

Because?

FS:

Because Vanessa is a carabinieri officer.

CDV:

Raphael was worried at that moment so much that he needed such advice from a carabinieri officer.

FS:

It is not that he was worried more than that, he thought there was a theft, of course I was not in the place I could not really understand myself personally, I suggested to my son to feel with my daughter, because he might even give him some advice He might have explained things, so he could have some more advice.

CDV:

If she did not have a carabinier daughter, she would have advised her to call the 112 directly.

FS:

Definitely certain.

CDV:

Thanks, I’m done.

GB:

Just to clarify this chronological sequence, the first time she knew about problems on the tap or on the wash basin.

FS:

I heard about the tap several days before.

GCM:

When he first says, first respect.

FS:

Compared to the date, the call, that is, before, the first November, many days before the first November.

GCM:

Of the 20:42 call.

FS:

Of the 20:42 and 43 of the first November, many days before the first November.

GCM:

Of the 20:42 call.

FS:

Of 20: 42-43 of November 1st.

GB:

So there was a faucet problem a few days earlier than the first November.

FS:

Yup.

GB:

What’s new on November 1st?

FS:

That the kitchen basin drain had broken and that water had been poured on the ground.

GB:

Thanks, I was interested in this sequence.

GCM:

Excuse me just a few things, ask the defender, the phone call with reference to this discharge on the first November in the evening what was it? That is, what would Raffaele have to solicit her son.

FS:

My son told me that while he was washing the dishes he realized he was losing water.

GCM:

This a few days before.

FS:

No, that night?

GCM:

That evening?

FS:

Yup.

GCM:

Because she first asked the public prosecutor who asked her when she made the phone call at 20:42 her son where she said she did not know.

FS:

I said this because it’s obvious that I called from a cellphone from another cell phone in theory my son could be anywhere. But referring to the loss of discharge I have to deduce at this time I categorically deduced that my son at that time was at his home.

GCM:

Because your son tells you he was at home.

FS:

He was in the house and he was hitching in the kitchen and this was a mess. He had noticed while he was washing dishes pouring water on the ground.

GCM:

While washing the dishes.

FS:

While washing the dishes.

GCM:

She asked her son if she was alone, so we found out she was …

FS:

No, he was with Amanda, I knew very well.

GCM:

Your son told him.

FS:

Yes she told me it was with Amanda.

GCM:

Then he also talked about the next morning phone call she does to her son at 9:20 PM she says for how she responded to me she slept, here it may be more precise than what she meant, that is, she told her.

FS:

Let’s say it was a while to answer a little while …

GCM:

Did you call him on the cellphone?

FS:

Yup.

GCM:

Did you call him?

FS:

I called him on the cellphone, he was late for answering, then when he replied, I heard the sound of sleep, that is, it was almost as if I had woken him with my phone call, so since I had nothing to ask him and I had already deduced, and if she was still in bed to sleep she was certainly not gone anywhere, I closed it out telling him I called him later.

GCM:

She asked her if she was alone if …

FS:

At that time no, I did not pose this problem sincerely.

GB:

I asked for the production of the photos exhibited to the witness, because in previous hearings I had only photocopies.

GCM:

The parties observe nothing, the court acquires the photos for their usability.

raffaele and dad3

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“Had this case been tried in America, Knox never would have been convicted…”

“It’s one of the many failings of Italian justice that it never delivers conclusive, door-slamming certainty.  What usually happens is that the door is left wide open to take the case to the next level, first to appeal and then to the cassazione, the Supreme Court.”  — Tobias Jones, the Guardian

Did Italy do an injustice to Knox?  I think it’s apparent, Italy’s liberal appeals system did Meredith wrong. After one trial, three appeals and two guilty verdicts, one can safely say, evidence exists in this case, and the quality of that evidence could very feasibly have resulted in a conviction in America.  The fact that the same evidence that resulted in two guilty verdicts which could then be re-scrutinized on appeal, under the basis that the defense simply disagreed, is a much harsher indictment of Italy’s appeal system than it is of their justice system, or investigators, as a whole.

italy appeal

The murderofmeredithkercher.com provides a cogent summary of how the American legal system differs from Italy’s:

In the United States, once you are convicted, an appeal is limited to arguments over procedural and legal errors. After the initial verdict, questions of fact and the introduction of new evidence is only allowed in exceptional circumstances. That is not the case with the Italian legal system. The second stage in the Italian criminal process is a second examination of some elements of the evidence with new triers of fact. That being said, the second trial is not a complete retrial.

Simply put, each successive appeal in Italy does amount to interrogating successively smaller and smaller pieces of the true crime pizza.  If the original trial is the pizza, then the first appeal applies itself to a small fraction of the case file, the second to an even smaller fraction, and the final appeal is left to juggle a few toppings picked off a final slice.

A graphic produced by the Wiki team at themurderofmeredithkercher.com illustrates this fragmentation process at a glance.  What it doesn’t show [because there is almost nothing left to show], is the final layer, the toppings, where Knox’s case was broken down even further into a controversial final appeal heard by Marasca/Bruno which she and Sollecito ultimately won*.

The murderofmeredithkercher.com also provides the ambit of the Hellmann-Zanetti appeal in a nutshell:

  1. Hellmann…ruled that the Appeal Court would like to hear again from a witness (Antonio Curatolo) who put Amanda Knox and Raffaele Sollecito in the vicinity of the crime scene, thus invalidating their alibi.
  2. Hellmann also decided to appoint experts to re-evaluate two items of evidence — the knife allegedly used in the murder and the victim’s bra clasp that was found to contain Sollecito’s DNA.
  3. During the trial Hellmann would expand the scope of the case to allow five prisoners to examine the veracity of Guede’s accusations against Knox and Sollecito.

A typical excuse for why a defendant ought to have another chance in court is because of a [usually unfair] “trial by media.” As it happens, any case that attracts massive media attention tends to involve massive police resources.  Because the community are in uproar, there is more pressure on the cops than usual to deliver a suspect.

What’s crazy is how the defense invariably accuse the cops of mischief while they scramble under the unmitigating glare of the media.  It’s when the media are watching that the cops are least likely to take any short cuts.

So each and every case that’s in the media, like Knox, like O.J., like Madeline McCann, will inevitably get heightened attention from the police.  It will also get heightened criticism of the investigation. That’s every defense team’s golden ticket – lousy crime scene technicians and corrupt police.  Can you name one high-profile case in America in which the defense didn’t attack the investigators for sloppy work somewhere along the line?

doubt

Now, let’s get back to the premise of this chapter. Would Knox have been convicted if tried in America? Is the evidence burden sufficient? Given the evidence burden against her, she would, in my view, have faced the same odds as O.J. Simpson or Stephen Avery.

Let’s imagine Knox was tried and convicted in America.  What are the chances she’d be exonerated on appeal in America? Well, what are the chances she’d even be granted an appeal? Let’s check.

  1. In America, according to the Bureau of Justice Statistics, the overall percentage of verdicts that are reversed on appeal is 12%. Nearly 50% of all cases are overturned on appeal in Italy, according to the Guardian.
  2. An important factor to consider within this contention that Knox would have been acquitted in America, is simply how few cases in America actually make it back to court on appeal.  italy knox trial

In Italy, and certainly in the Knox case, the qualifications to re-present certain aspects of a case are shockingly light.  Take for instance the new experts brought in to review the DNA.  If you want to pose the question: would a similar review be granted as easily in America? Most certainly no, it would not.

Appeals for criminal cases in America are heard on the basis of error in trial procedure, or in terms of a judge’s misinterpretation of the law.  Appeals aren’t granted willy-nilly based on sheer disgust of a verdict.  You would never see DNA being argued on appeal in America simply because the defense felt it wasn’t sufficient.  If that were the case American courtrooms would also be backlogged until 2170.

To apply the appeal standard in Italy to a high-profile case in America, the appeal attempts of Michael Skakel are worth noting.  Skakel was convicted of Martha Moxley’s murder in 2002.  He unsuccessfully petitioned for appeals in 2003, 2006, 2007, and 2010, mainly using an argument that two other individuals had knowledge of a different killer, and all five times he was denied an appeal.

It wasn’t until later in 2010, when Skakel filed an appeal on the basis of incompetent representation** [by lawyer, Mickey Sherman] that he was finally able to bring his arguments to court.**

  1. A final point to consider is the argument about a backlog of cases in Italy having some bearing on this case. Italy is back-logged by millions of cases, but what does that have to do with Knox?  Her appeal was granted and went to trial just one year after her original conviction.

In 2013 The Atlantic rued the “Tragedy of Italian Justice”.  As if any failing of their justice system should automatically render Knox’s case unfair.  But, how many times have Americans disagreed with criminal verdicts?   How about O.J. Simpson, Stephen Avery, Casey Anthony, Robert Durst, Jodi Arias [sentencing] and Michael Jackson, to name a few.

Would you then make the claim that the entire American justice system is a sham and nobody’s good at their job, like local blogger Frank Sfarzo did so emphatically about the justice system in Perugia.

“Nobody here’s good at their job. If they were, they wouldn’t be in Perugia.” — Frank Sfarzo to Rolling Stone***

Italy hates Amanda Knox for the same reason America loves her.  It’s more pride than anything else. A few years back, I was one of those who thought the case was a mess.  But the lousy English translations of the testimony, and the British and American media’s interpretations**** didn’t help these impressions either.

 “There is a feeling that the whole case is flawed***** and that a US citizen should not have to go to jail because of that.” — Express UK


*The third appeal [effectively the fourth final trial leading to Knox’s eventual acquittal] is covered in the final narrative of this series: Denouement. Despite “winning” their respective appeals, neither were able to claim compensation for “wrongful imprisonment.”  It is one thing to find someone not guilty by the fairly strict criminal standard of reasonable doubt, but suing for compensation has another burden to deal with, although it’s a lower standard on the legal ladder.  In civil law the burden is to prove, on a balance of probabilities whether one is entitled to compensation. O.J. Simpson famously won his criminal case [acquitted based on reasonable doubt] but lost the civil case lodged against him by the Goldman family [convicted based on a balance of probabilities.]

**The spurious nature of Skakel’s accusations against his lawyer are borne out in the redaction by the Stamford Advocate of the story announcing  the appeal, and Skakel’s unfounded [as it turned out] accusations against his attorney.

Though Michael Skakel won his appeal when it was eventually granted in 2013, the Connecticut Supreme Court reinstated Skakel’s murder conviction with a 4–3 majority decision in December 2016.

***Frank Sfarzo’s allegations about Italy’s Justice system as quoted by Rolling Stone have since been redacted.

****It’s seldom acknowledged that Knox’s PR company took it upon themselves to translate the Italian court transcripts for and behalf of their American client to English-speaking [British and American] media.  The impact of this and other stratagems to subtly texture [and shift] the narrative in the English-speaking mainstream, is analysed in detail in the next book in this series: Extradition.

*****The “feeling” that the Italian justice system was flawed didn’t materialize by accident.  According to the New York Times in October 4th, 2011 [immediately after Knox’s acquittal when such admissions didn’t matter]: “…a neighbor of Ms. Knox’s who is a superior court judge in Seattle, said that he spoke about the case to Senator Cantwell, a friend of his. When Ms. Knox was convicted in 2009…Cantwell issued a statement saying in part, “I have serious questions about the Italian justice system and whether anti-Americanism tainted this trial.” This was an ironic statement in itself, because by vaunting “Anti-Americanism” in its reasoning, America was admitting their own anti-Italy views, in terms of undermining Italy’s justice system.

DESPICABLE and FOXY KNOXY FIGHTS BACK 

are available on AMAZON KINDLE

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February 2009: Filomena’s Testimony Revisited

“They were of the same age, they had interests in common, and both spoke English. But that did not last.  They had no reason not to get along, but it seemed that as time went on they drifted apart.” — Filomena Romanelli’s testimony lasted five hours on February 7th, 2009


When the public prosecutor quizzed Meredith’s Italian housemates on what things were like on the domestic front living with two foreign university students, both concurred: things had started off well with the two English-speaking housemates, but then, for reasons unknown, things went less well.

I believe this aspect of the trial has both been unreported and underemphasised. In the rush to decipher what had undermined Knox’s relationship with Meredith, there has been a failure to acknowledge that at the time of the murder, the friendship had deteriorated. Then, in the failure to figure what had caused the failure in the relationship, pundits reverted back to the idea that the relationship had not disintegrated to begin with.

Not surprisingly, Knox herself and her PR campaign hold this as their central tenet. That Meredith was her friend, and thus she had no reason to harm her.

As far as I’m concerned it is immaterial to rationalise whether their friendship had deteriorated a little or a lot, or to ask either of the Italian women whether – in their assessment – the falling out of the English girls was for a sufficiently serious reason.  That is for the court to decide.  Obviously there is no harm in asking for the opinion of the two Italian women, but what would one expect them to say?

Knox and Meredith fought like cats and dogs day and night.

 I was there, and I knew it was inevitable that the one would finish the other off…?

Anyone who said that would immediately be accused of standing by when they should have done something. So if there was a sufficient reason, why hadn’t they done something?  Or were they simply not around enough to supervise?

In a manner of speaking, this is what happened. In Laura Mezzetti’s case she admitted she was never really at home to make a qualified assessment of what was going on, and in Filomena’s case, she was home only a little more than Laura was.

Before we get to Mezzetti’s version of events, who can say whether the arguments of others they live with are justified or not?  When one is closely related to someone accused of a crime like murder, who can be clear about whether a motive for murder is insufficient, or symptomatic of insufficiency?

If there is insufficiency [meaning inadequacy, insecurity, uncertainty], then theoretically those sharing a particularly domestic set-up are not merely cohabiters but co-creators [enablers] of those insufficiencies. And so to say there was an insufficiency of any kind is to admit that one played a part in allowing it to develop.  Who would do that in the context of murder?

British girls

In my opinion both could tell there was a cultural and personality clash, but they weren’t around enough for it to be a big deal to them. As for Meredith, she could escape to her British clique [and she did, on the night of her murder], but in terms of a more permanent solution, well, she’d just moved in and was about to pay for another month’s rent. Also, her British friends had themselves just moved and re-oriented their living arrangements, so moving in with them was premature in November. Besides this, Meredith may have felt when Giacomo was around she could go downstairs to escape Knox.

Knox, for her part, could escape to Sollecito, and did.  But he was also working on his thesis, which sometimes left Knox at a loose end.

Additionally, if we wish to figure out a motive, we cannot turn to two Italian speakers who spent minimal time with the suspects.  What we can and must do, however, is find out what contextual issues are noteworthy.  Habits. Patterns of behaviour observable over time.  Were there any?

Even when there is a language barrier and just five weeks of behaviour to work with [Knox moved into the villa on the 20th of September, Meredith had moved in three weeks earlier, on September 1st, and was dead just over a month after Knox moved in], there ought to be a discernible pattern, and actions speak louder than words. What actions was Filomena aware of?

I also think it is necessary to point out that Knox could easily appear a certain way* to her mostly-absent landladies [they were subletting too, but they were the ones who decided if Knox could stay or not], and also, Knox may have figured the two Italians were in charge of her fate, not Meredith.  Thus putting up the odd appearance for their benefit [and her own] would not have been difficult, irrespective of what was really happening on the domestic front on a day-to-day basis between herself and Meredith.

While Filomena is adamant that the girls had no reason not to get along, the fact is she observed that they weren’t getting along.  So clearly, whether there was reason or not, there was some sort of breakdown leading up to the murder.  Mezzetti reinforced this when she was quizzed by Mignini:

MEZZETTI: Initially I noted that the girls went out more together, at times they left together, they went to the centre together, they went for walks together, then I saw that each one went about their own business, they were a little more distant but without any particular disagreements and not for any particular reason, each one tried to lead their own life. But I don’t think there were problems between the girls, or at least I wasn’t aware of them.

If the Italian women were aware of severe disagreements, and being older, failed to intercede, they could be accused of failing to reasonably protect the one or the other student that was effectively in their charge.

Since all the women and men in the villa were habitually smoking marijuana, this idea of not taking responsibility for things going wrong with the residents could theoretically lead to jail time. If you have a sibling younger than you abusing alcohol, is some of the responsibility for what your sibling does yours?

The resident of via della Pergola 7 had taken legal advice before the trial, and Filomena was even working at a law firm when the murder took place, so not only were the stakes high for all the Italian occupants, they had to play the legalities in a way that would spare all potential prosecution.**

The reason we need to interrogate Filomena’s testimony, more so than anyone else’s, is to figure out three issues above all.

  1. If Filomena’s room was broken into, and Knox knew that it was, what was [and wasn’t stolen]? Part of the same question about a staged burglary is this: if one staged a murder, and staged a burglary, if certain items had been stolen, why not others?
  2. Did theft precipitate the final confrontation?
  3. What precisely were Knox’s habits when it came to household cleaning? Also, we want to see Filomena’s testimony in terms of the washing machine.  In crime scene images I’ve seen, the washing machine is chock full of clothing. So who loaded the washing machine, when was it loaded, and what was inside it?

Let’s start with the first question.

  1. Why Was The Burglar So Selective?

Now, I don’t wish to evaluate the break-in here, I’ve done so in previous narratives.

But let us consider, briefly, a scenario where an intruder broke into the villa and his handiwork lay undiscovered from at least 21:00 [when Meredith arrived home] to 10:00 the next morning [when Knox said she returned to shower.]  If the intruder had murdered the only occupant, if he had at least ten hours to play with, why not flee with something to make “his trouble” worth it?

Glass was found on top of Filomena’s clothing in her room. One might expect the glass fragments to fall on the floor and the bed, and then the clothing to be thrown on top of the glass as the burglar conducted his search.

When we re-evaluate the idea of there being four computers in the villa, including in Filomena’s room [on the floor], why would the burglar steal Meredith’s phones, credit cards and money, but not her computer, nor anyone else’s?

2017-08-12 20.27.37-52

ABC quotes Filomena’s testimony in regards to her computer.

FILEMENA: I noticed that my computer was on the floor, on a pile of clothes, and covered with pieces of glass.

ABC goes on:

The women had not had a falling out beyond some “normal” disputes over house cleaning, Romanelli said. The prosecution has argued that bad feelings between Knox and Kercher could have been part of a motive in the slaying. Investigators contend that Sollecito and Knox staged a theft after the murder, breaking the window with a rock from the inside. The glass lying atop the clothes and the computer indicates that the room was already messy [staged to look like a burglary] before the window was broken, they said.

Why would the burglar steal Meredith’s phones and money, but not Filomena’s computer, camera, glasses, jewellery or handbag?

One potentially obvious answer to the question is that Knox wished to continue to live in the villa, and in Italy, in spite of what had happened to Meredith.  Imagine a scenario where Knox had murdered Meredith.  If part of the staging had involved stealing her housemate’s computers, this would indeed have soured things [from Knox’s perspective] for everyone. She wished to protect her friendship with the Italians, and hence, the worst she would do is break a window.

Knox trial 104

The choice of Filomena’s window is also interesting.  Why not break Laura Mezzetti’s window? Because Laura was never around, she was less a threat to Knox. The other aspect, which I believe is the more crucial, was that after Knox’s room, Filomena’s room was closest to Meredith’s.  The only downside was the window.  Mezzetti’s window was just around the corner from the front door, and easily accessible from ground levelFilomena’s window was right beside the front door, but nowhere near as accessible from the ground.

In any event, the biggest problem with this ruse was that no burglar would break and enter and not steal the most obvious, and valuable thing. ***

The faux burglary nevertheless provides crucial psychological insights into the crime, not because of what the burglary pretends to be, but what it actually is:

Things were stolen, but they were selective.

Meredith’s keys, Meredith’s money, Meredith’s phones, Meredith’s credit cards.  Of all these, arguably the most valuable items were disposed of immediately anyway.  This disposing of the phones further reinforces the idea that things needed to be stolen, but only Meredith’s things.

Who would do that except someone who knew her? What murderer would feel bad about stealing? What murderer would steal phones then fling them into someone’s garden, only for them to be found hours later?  Well, perhaps a murderer whose home was the crime scene. Perhaps a murderer who had never murdered before.  And anyway, if you stole something, and your home was the crime scene, where would you put it?

  1. Did Theft Set Meredith Off To Begin With?

Clearly the idea that Knox and Meredith butted heads about cleaning the villa didn’t lead to murder.  What it did do, in my view, is set the tone for further butting of heads.

One of the photos you never see, online or elsewhere, is a rear-view from the inside of Knox’s bedroom.  From this perspective one sees her cupboard, which is situated immediately inside her bedroom door [to the left when entering].

If Knox had stolen anything from Meredith’s room, given how small and Spartan her room was, there was virtually nowhere to hide it other than inside the right side of the closet.  In the villa after the murder, when CSI teams dusted for prints, virtually no fingerprints of any of the inhabitants [including] Knox were found outside of Meredith’s room.

In Knox’s bedroom, not a single attributable print was found, although a few smudged prints were found on the window and the wardrobe. Only a single fingerprint in Knox’s room had survived. It was Meredith’s, found on Knox’s right closet handle.

In the Oscar Pistorius case, I initially imagined Reeva trying to call the police behind a locked door, and this setting Oscar off.  He heard her trying to call the police, panicked and shot her.  But when one fires up the imagination, that’s a laughable scenario.  More likely, Reeva had Oscar’s phone with her in the toilet, and what was on his phone and the implications, especially on Valentine’s Day, is what set things fatally in motion.

Think about it in personal terms.  If someone close to you stole your phone, took it into into the bathroom and went through your messages, wouldn’t that alarm you?  How about if you were a 26-year-old celebrity, on Valentine’s Day?  [Oscar’s phone was subsequently hacked and wiped, and the data was never retrieved]. In the same way I don’t believe Knox would ever have simply arrived home and started provoking or harassing her housemate to the point of murder.

More likely, I believe, Knox had stolen Meredith’s rent money and Meredith had found it in Knox’s room, specifically in her cupboard, and confronted Knox about it.  Meredith would have had every reason to be furious, which may have been the point. Or, Meredith had reason to believe Knox had stolen her rent money, perhaps because it had been stolen before, perhaps by Knox, perhaps by someone else. Or, Meredith may have felt one of Knox’s many dodgy male visitors had pilfered her rent, which would also be Knox’s responsibility, by constantly inviting strangers to their home. Whatever it was, this confrontation may have set Knox off.

In both the Pistorius case and the Knox case, I believe it was the victim that confronted her killer, and perhaps had every reason to do so. But the problem was that the perpetrator then lost it. I believe the feelings of insufficiency of the murderer, which were already well established, then welled up, and as the confrontation escalated, the killer was unable to contain a swelling anger, with tragic and explosive results.

  1. How Often Did Knox Use The Washing Machine?

This question has to do with a potential cover up, and it’s a question I’m not sure has been adequately explored, certainly not by filtering through Filomena’s direct testimony.  So let’s do that now.

To figure out this question, we need to know Knox’s habits vis a vis the habits of the household, when it came to washing and cleaning.  And then we need to figure out the particular situation of the washing machine vis a vis the particulars of the crime scene.  Worth playing for?

MIGNINI: What do think happened between Amanda and Meredith? Were they always the same [to each other] or did they change?

FILOMENA:…of course the two girls were of the same age and they had common interests, both of them [English], so that would certainly facilitate communication among themselves. Me and Laura…besides having been friends for a long time…we left early in the morning to go to work, we went home for a short lunch break and then returned home in the evening. The girls obviously….had [both] come to study Italian…Meredith at first, began to show Amanda around…

MIGNINI: Here and thereafter?

FILOMENA: Look…I was not there during the day…perhaps they [developed] personal interests and cultivated them individually, not with the same assiduity or frequency that they had been at the beginning.

Skipping ahead…

MIGNINI: How did you organise the cleaning?

FILOMENA: We had arranged shifts because the layout of the house was made so that having two bathrooms inside the house each bathroom could serve two bedrooms.  And so Laura and I had decided…the girls would occupy the bathroom that served their bedrooms, for the parts we shared we took shifts in cleaning.

In other words, Laura and Filomena took turns cleaning their bathroom, and Meredith and Knox as well.

MIGNINI: Where there some problems?

FILOMENA: The shifts weren’t always respected.

MIGNINI: Who did not respect them?

FILOMENA: Amanda sometimes did not respect them, but…

In Waiting to be Heard Knox is adamant that Filomena was mistaken [to put it mildly] on this point.  Interestingly, instead of being specific about its truthfulness, Knox dramatizes the moment.

Knox stresses in italics that Filomena “can’t be saying this.” I have seen a similar technique to thought counter a court or police narrative in the Ramsey’s book Death of Innocence. Technically, one can think whatever one wishes to about a particular allegation.

MIGNINI: Do you remember how long?

FILOMENA: In October.

It’s interesting that Filomena doesn’t say once or twice, or during one particular week, but it seems Knox’s hygiene was an issue from the get go until the end.  October is essentially the sum total of her stay in the villa, give or take a week in September.

Of course, according to Knox, the idea of a cleaning rota only came up “a few days” before Meredith was murdered.  Even if it’s true, the fact that a cleaning rota had even been necessitated, and as Knox put it, “my turn handed come up” tends to reinforce a sense that Knox had not only never had a turn to do house cleaning, but had never done any period.

In her own version of events, Knox is bitter that neither of her former housemates made eye-contact with her while on the stand, and worse, Filomena made Knox’s behaviour “seem out of step with everyone else’s in the house.”

As a result, Knox stood up in court and made a spontaneous declaration that both her housemates were exaggerating “about the cleaning.”

My own sense was that Filomena was trying to reveal as little as possible, and to protect everyone – including herself – as much as possible.

MIGNINI: And what did you use for cleaning?

FILOMENA: We used…home-made products.

MIGNINI: What were the products?

FILOMENA: Home detergents, detergents for floors, bleach, normal household cleaning products.

MIGNINI: And there were other problems…were there strangers in the house?

FILOMENA: Yes, strangers were in the house, the fact is this: the girls, when I talk about girls I am referring to Meredith and Amanda, the girls obviously have more common interests, young people, out of the house, etc., did very soon. They were of course also very nice, it was easy for them to make friends with the boys and at first they made friends with the neighbors, then obviously even later, other people usually knew between the university and the attendants. I can say that Meredith has never brought any stranger to the house outside a couple if I’m wrong, a couple of British friends, apart from them two I’ve never seen Meredith bring kids home. I’ve never even seen Amanda directly bringing men back home because I often missed the weekend…

It’s difficult what to make of this.  Filomena was in the kitchen with Knox and Sollecito on November 1st, so clearly she had not only met Sollecito, but had seen Knox bring a man home. Whether Filomena had never seen Amanda “directly” bring men home, as we’re about to find out, is open to interpretation.

MIGNINI: And who did it?

FILOMENA: Amanda.

MIGNINI: Remember who was there, who attended these strangers?

FILOMENA: I remember [Knox] went to work; she met an Albanian boy but I do not remember the name now and I remember that once in a lunch break, this boy came with her as well, eating something…and then leaving…

If Knox was bringing boys home often, and if she was having sex with them, one can imagine a situation where the bathroom was a sort of revolving door for boys taking a shower inside it, and Meredith’s room was right beside the bathroom they shared.

If Knox’s guests were often using the bathroom and toilet, and Meredith wasn’t bringing home as many guests, and Knox wasn’t cleaning up after either them or herself, one can imagine this causing an increasingly sticky situation between housemates.  A simmering resentment from both girls seems inevitable, doesn’t it?  And if there is one way guaranteed to make anyone angry, it is for one’s sexual behaviour to be impinged on [for whatever reason] by a third party.

MIGNINI: Do you remember other guys who came home…strangers?

FILOMENA: I remember a guy…I know this guy slept in the house, but when he slept at home [in the villa] I still did not.

MIGNINI: And who invited her?

FILOMENA: Amanda.

MIGNINI: Always Amanda. What was his name, this guy?

FILOMENA: Something like Daniel, Danilo, he was a friend of neighbors; I do not really remember the name sincerely.

We don’t yet have an answer about the washing machine, from Filomena.  Let’s skip ahead to Filomena’s version of the call she received from Knox on the morning of November 2nd.  Remember, it’s a call to communicate:

  1. That Filomena’s room had been broken into.
  2. That she [Knox] had taken a shower.
  3. That she saw blood in the villa.
  4. That Knox was heading back to Sollecito’s apartment.

FILOMENA: “Hello Amanda what happened?” “I came and the door was open, I came in…” We spoke a bit in English and a bit in Italian.  I remember well that I said…there is something strange going on. She said: “Anyway I’m going to Raffaele, I showered, now I’m going to Raffaele …There’s some blood.”  I said, “Amanda I don’t understand, tell me why…there is something strange, the door’s open, you had a shower, there’s blood, but where’s Meredith.” “I don’t know.” I did not understand what she was telling me. I couldn’t follow her…

Now we must bear in mind this idea of someone who takes a shower, but doesn’t think to clean up blood in her bathroom, or find out where it came from.  To take Knox’s version, she thought it might be Meredith having a period, or blood from her own pierced ears.  Knox sort’ve shrugged off the blood, then headed out the door…with a mop to clean up [not her own bathroom] but her boyfriend’s kitchen.  Because she was that kind of gal, someone who liked to clean up other people’s mess…

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Skipping ahead…

MIGNINI: Do you remember if you invited [Knox] to call the police?

FILOMENA: I told her … So be careful, I told her: “Amanda check the villa and call me right away.” In the meantime I said … to Paola. “Something happened at home, Amanda said she found the door open… And that there was blood, had there been an accident.”…Maybe Meredith….I honestly did not think of anything tragic, I wanted to give myself a plausible or optimistic explanation, so I said maybe she cut herself, maybe she was frightened and went to pharmacy, it was close enough, and just left the front door open. 

MIGNINI: Before moving on, Amanda …was going to Raffaele?

FILOMENA: Yes, she said, “I’m going to Raphael, so I’ll come back with him to see what’s up.”

MIGNINI: So she realized what happened, and went to get help from Raffaele?

FILOMENA: Exactly, I knew she came home, that the house was open, that there was something strange going on, that she went to the bathroom and so I believed it was her own bathroom, according to the division of the rooms…something weird was going on, so that’s why she went to Raffaele’s home and then came back to the villa.

MIGNINI: With him.

FILOMENA: With him.

MASSEI: Excuse me, did she even say she had showered in the bathroom?

FILOMENA: Yes, if I’m not mistaken, I could not really understand why…

MASSEI: And the blood stains she had seen in the same bathroom where she had showered?

FILOMENA: Yes, so I said, you came in, the door opened and you showered. Yes, I said I did not understand. I spoke to Paola and honestly I was troubled.

MIGNINI: Were there other phone calls?

FILOMENA: Yes, I was worried and tried to call her but she did not answer me….I called Meredith…Meredith had two phone numbers…an Italian number and an English number and if I’m not mistaken, it rang but went unanswered and the other did not sound even. I tried, tried, I said “Madonna…”

Skipping ahead…

MIGNINI: Amanda and Raffaele how were they dressed?

FILOMENA: Raffaele had a jacket with a hood; it looks like olive green, a yellow scarf and jeans. Amanda had a skirt, woollen stockings, thick, a sweater…I do not remember well on it, I remember my skirt well.

What’s easy to miss here is that Knox was underdressed, so much so that Sollecito gave her his hoodie to wear. Why on Earth would Knox, having just returned a second time to the villa, have run out of winter clothes, on November 2nd of all days? Well, what if she had decided to do the laundry [or dispose of dirty laundry] that day of all days?

We know for a fact that just a few days after the murder, Knox went to buy clothes, creating a small incident with her choice of racy lingerie.  One may argue that her room having become a crime scene made her a refugee, and this is why she didn’t have any clothes.  But then why buy lingerie?

On the other hand, if Knox was supposed to make a trip to Gubbio that day, where were her clothes prepped for that outing?  And why would she do laundry on the same day they planned on making a day trip?

Before we deal with the washing machine, specifically who might have turned it on last, let’s follow Filomena as she arrives home, extremely distressed.  The important thing to do here is to compare Filomena’s anxiety to Knox’s lack of urgency in the face of a “burglary”.

FILOMENA: I went into the house and my room…I went into the room and saw the broken window and everything in the air…I honestly came to the house…and I was already trembling and as far as I was very nervous hand by hand I calmed down, saying, “Oh, God, perhaps, they did not have time to take anything, because at least the things of more value are there.” Taking my computer I realized that raising my computer raised the glasses, in the sense that the glasses were over things, that is, it was a mixture and so there I did not immediately.

Do you see?  When Filomena found her things, she seized her own computer, knowing the cops and others would enter the premises.  She wanted to keep her most valuable items with her.  Knox, on the other hand, thought they had broken in, showered, then left the villa and also left her computer on her desk, even though the broken window was still broken. No one would do that, because if the villa had been breached, it was still accessible. It was still insecure.

Remember, instead of checking to see if her own belongings were stolen, or anyone else’s, Knox said she simply had a shower. In reality, I don’t believe Knox did shower at the villa, but I believe the shower and basin were extensively used between midnight November 1st and the morning of November 2nd. The bathroom was right beside the crime scene, so if there was a cover up and a clean-up, why wouldn’t it be used?

Dilute traces of Meredith’s blood were also found on the bathroom light switch. It was the most obvious resource to use because it was the closest area to wash blood off hands, feet and skin, to flush away blood, tissues, perhaps toilet towels and pieces of cloth.

Now that we are in the small bathroom, we might as well dispense with the single intruder/attacker theory.  We already know that Rudi left shoeprints in the hall, in Meredith’s blood.  This could only be achieved after she was attacked, agreed? One can only create shoeprints in blood if one has the shoes, and a pool of blood to dip them into.  The problem is that there were footprints in blood as well as shoeprints. I do not wish to argue the merits of who the bloody footprint belonged to, except to stress that it didn’t belong to Rudi. Rudi did not rush out of Meredith’s room, into the hall and out the door, then return later with his shoes off.

If Knox visited the villa at 10:00, and if she didn’t shower, what did she do there?

The idea of barefooted criminals covering up a crime scene suggests three things:

  1. Bare feet are easier to rinse off than shoes.
  2. Anyone taking off their shoes at a crime scene, probably had a lot of time to work with.
  3. Anyone that had a lot of time to work probably knew the crime scene well, and/or lived there.

FILOMENA: So at that time we were … We noticed that the washing machine was loaded with clothes, the police asked if they were our own and the answer was no…I did not load the washing machine, Laura had loaded the washing machine before 1 November and because of this I said, no, the clothes aren’t mine. When we went to the police station and there I they see one by one the clothes, I recognized many some of these… like the clothes belonging to Meredith. Some of the clothes contained anyway in the washer I wasn’t able to recognize them.

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What’s also often overlooked at the crime scene was a drying rack in the passage area opposite the door to Amanda’s room. It’s almost as though Knox herself was waving a flag, through the rack, to say to those who would soon arrive at the house:

SEE, I WAS DOING WASHING, SEE I DID DO WASHING.

AND IF THINGS ARE WET OR WATERY ON THE FLOOR, OR IN THE BATHROOM, IT’S BECAUSE I WAS WASHING, NO BIG DEAL!

I WAS WASHING IN THE SHOWER, WASHING THE KITCHEN, AND DOING THE WASHING.

I’ve been unable to confirm a rumour that when the cops first arrived at the villa close to 13:00, while standing inside the villa, the washing machine stopped. It’s possible this was genuine witness testimony from the police. If the machine stopped at around 13:00, it means it had to have been set, at most, an hour earlier, and probably less. Is that what Knox did when she arrived back at the villa; didn’t take a shower but threw some potentially incriminating clothing into the washer?

Phone records show that both Knox and Sollecito were at the villa at 12:35, and perhaps for as long as 10-15 minutes earlier than that. At 12:51 and 12:54, Sollecito finally called the cops, but he seemed reluctant to do so. Part of this reluctance can be seen in the calling of the postal police to report a burglary, and also in the difficulty and delay the cops had in actually finding the place.

Both Newsweek and the Guardian noted that when Filomena checked the washing machine [since it was in their bathroom, she opened it up to see whose clothes were inside], she found it was still warm. The Guardian reported Filomena’s testimony at the time as follows:

Blonde, bespectacled Filomena Romanelli…posed a string of problems for the defence. She said that when she returned to the house they shared on 2 November 2007 the washing machine was warm. She later identified most of the clothes inside as those of the victim, Meredith Kercher…Romanelli…questioned [the] defence claim – that there was a break-in on the night of the killing…and contradicted Knox on whether Kercher was in the habit of locking herself in her room.

If the washing machine was warm, and if the clothes were Meredith’s, had Meredith done laundry as a final chore on Earth?  If so, she would have had to have done it at least 13 hours earlier, since her time of death at the latest was 23:30.  So how could the washer be warm at 13:00?

Newsweek was more on the chin with their version of Filomena’s testimony:

Filomena Romanelli, the Italian from whom Knox and Kercher sublet rooms in the villa, testified that the washing machine was warm when she arrived on the scene. She later identified the contents of the washing machine as Kercher’s even though the Briton had been dead for at least 10 hours before her body was found, implying that someone else started the laundry.

The Guardian repeated the strange combination of taking a shower after a burglary where blood traces are visible.

[When Knox called] Romanelli replied: “But Amanda. I don’t understand. Explain to me, because there’s something odd. The door’s open. You take a shower. There’s blood. But where’s Meredith?” “Eh, I don’t know,” she recalled Knox as saying. Romanelli told her to check the house again and call her back.

Replying to the judge later in her testimony, Romanelli said: “The door’s open. I go in. There’s blood. I take a shower. I don’t know about you, but I really don’t think that that’s normal.”

The reality is Knox probably didn’t shower at the villa that morning, but had to say she had because the bathroom was wet and washed, and [like the washing in the machine] likely still damp and soapy when the authorities arrived.

From Amanda’s testimony:

KNOX: Let’s see, it must have been around midday [when Raffaele arrived on Nov 1] when [Meredith] came out of her room, I think, but I don’t look at the clock much. Anyway early afternoon. Then [Meredith] went to went to take care of some laundry she also had hanging on the clothes rack, and also some things she had in the washing machine. Oh, before Raffaele came, we had talked a bit between ourselves about boys in general, because I used to ask her advice sometimes. Then Raffaele came and we prepared lunch together, we talked a bit together, then [Meredith] went back to her room to change, I think she took a shower, and then when Raffaele and I finished eating, I started playing [guitar], and while I was playing, she came out of her room, she said “ciao” to us and she went out the front door and that was the last time I saw her.

When Knox was asked if she had done any laundry, since Meredith was doing hers, Knox gave this response:

Well, it was totally normal for me to put things on the drying rack along with the things belonging to the others. So, yes, I took the things I had that were dry and I put them in my room.

When asked if it was normal for Knox to “mix clothes together” in the washing machine, Knox said:

It was normal, when someone needed to use it, they just put stuff in and did it. Yes, yes.

We know this isn’t true.  Filomena spoke of there being specific shifts for cleaning, and also washing, which is why she could be so sure neither herself nor Laura had done any washing on November 1st. The crucial element in all this is the most obvious element.  What was so important that it had to be washed there and then, on November 2nd?  Why, towels that had been used to soak and clean Meredith’s blood, of course. ****

 


*The idea that Knox might have “two faces” and lead a “double life” is not new.  It will be interrogated in more detail in the VERDICT section of this narrative.

**The Madeleine McCann case presents a similar scenario where six doctors holidaying together in the Algarve could theoretically all be liable, and lose their licenses, if it was determined that one child had been sedated, and died as a result.  If any of the other doctors knew about this practise and were doing the same with their own children, all six could lose their licenses to practise medicine.  If this was the case, a conspiracy of silence and perhaps other forms of collusion.

*** The same reasoning applies in the JonBenét Ramsey case.  A broken window in the basement is seen by some as an external point of entry.  Why then would an intruder who had succeeded in breaking in and breaking out without being discovered, forget to take what he came for [JonBenét]? Why would an intruder who was clever enough to leave no prints or DNA, leave behind a ransom note and then fail to act on it?

****Bloodied towels and washing machines feature prominently in the Oscar Pistorius and Jodi Arias/O.J. Simpson cases respectively.

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Amanda Knox’s Dark Matter

On February 15, 2016, the West Seattle Herald published Amanda’s View:  Ghosts

In response, we discuss our view on Amanda

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DARK MATTER, book two in the Meredith Kercher Murder Mystery series, is available on Amazon

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5 stars

By Danny Presley on October 15, 2015  Format:  Kindle Edition | Verified Purchase

Brilliant work…it gave me insights towards trying to understand what is the truth…we will probably never know why this happened…but these narratives help me with my own humble opinions…Also, I trust these authors…

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