Meredith Kercher was murdered in Perugia Italy, November 1st, 2007. Meredith was a beautiful young woman who had her life stolen from her in an act of pure evil. Her murder would change many lives forever. For Amanda Knox and Raffaele Sollecito, it was the beginning of a long drawn out nightmare that continues to this day.
Three people were tried and convicted for Meredith Kercher's murder, Rudy Guede, Raffaele Sollecito and Amanda Knox. All of the credible evidence in this case points to Rudy Guede. Amanda Knox and Raffaele Sollecito had nothing to do with this crime. Amanda and Raffaele are both victims of an extreme rush to judgment in a city that was in an understandable state of unrest after a horrific murder had occurred. Lead investigator Edgardo Giobbi was under intense pressure to solve this murder quickly. He didn't look far for his suspects.
Amanda Knox and Raffaele Sollecito were the first people to arrive outside the crime scene the morning following the murder. Amanda Knox shared the residence with Meredith and two other women. Amanda became a suspect from day one. Some viewed her behavior as odd. Over a period of five days, Amanda and Raffaele voluntarily walked to the police station to talk to investigators. They were both unaware that they were suspects. The investigators worked their way around the law by stating that Amanda and Raffaele were being questioned as witnesses. It was reported that their phone conversations were recorded from day one. There is no doubt that they were suspects from day one. Questioning Amanda and Raffaele as witnesses instead of suspects, saved the police the extra effort of recording the interrogation. It also allowed the investigators to question Amanda with no attorney present. This became a very important element of this case. The interrogation of Amanda Knox was illegal.
Lead prosecutor Giuliano Mignini was quick to take complete control of this case. He already had two suspects handed to him from Giobbi. It was reported that Investigators found hair at the crime seen believed to belong to an African male. This was mentioned in early reporting but was never mentioned at trial. As it turns out, the hair could have belonged to Meredith. This question was never answered. If this reported hair was indeed one of the first pieces of evidence then how could this evidence possibly link Amanda and Raffaele to the crime? If they were the attackers, who did the African hair belong to?
Mignini's mind went to work. He had a vision of how this crime took place. He believed the crime started out as a sadistic sex game that turned into a brutal murder when Meredith refused to participate. His fantasy of a group sex game gone wrong was based on nothing more than his imagination. This is not the first time Mignini has had these visions. He already had a history of dreaming up satanic ritualistic murder fantasies. In Mignini's mind, the sadistic sex game he was referring to, was instigated by a young woman, she would lead the attack, ordering two men to force the victim to submit to sex, eventually pushing the victim to her knees, torturing her, then killing her, with a knife or knives. Mignini dreamt up this story, wrote the script, then began casting his characters.
Using the information that he acquired from the illegal interrogation of Amanda Knox, Mignini quickly assembled his cast. Amanda was cast as the lead and Amanda's boss Patrick Lumumba was cast in a supporting role. Who's Patrick you ask. I will get to that in a minute. Mignini needed a third character. For that role, he cast Amanda's boyfriend of only six days, Raffaele Sollecito. Now Mignini's cast was complete. But something was wrong. Patrick Lumumba had an airtight alibi. This was not surprising. After all, Mignini wasn't basing anything on evidence. He was simply looking to cast characters for his script. The only evidence he had was a text message on Amanda's phone. The text from Amanda to Patrick, "see you later" was taken literally by the investigators. In the US, this phrase, in the context that it was written, simply means goodbye. This phrase was either lost in translation or was intentionally twisted by the investigators to get the desired result that they needed. It's possible the investigators were also targeting Lumumba because of the African hair that may have been found at the scene. Lumumba, of course, was African.
Meanwhile, the police, unlike Mignini, were looking for actual evidence. Investigators found a hand print on a pillowcase at the crime scene. The finger prints pointed to an African male named Rudy Guede. Shortly after the murder, Guede had fled to Germany. He was stopped in Germany trying to board a train without a ticket and was immediately extradited back to Italy. Mignini's storyline fell apart. Further investigation showed all of the evidence at the crime scene pointed to Rudy Guede. The evidence was clear. There was no evidence at all to suggest that Meredith was killed during a satanic ritualistic group sex game.
The actual facts didn't matter to Mignini. He had already told his fantasy to the press. Bold statements were made that the crime had been solved. They were even bold enough to say, "case closed." It would be too embarrassing for lead investigator Edgardo Giobbi and lead prosecutor Giuliano Mignini to admit their mistake. Giobbi had boasted about solving the crime so quickly, he even put a photo of Amanda Knox on his wall of Italy's most notorious criminals. Mignini was already being investigated for abuse of office in relation to another case. Mignini was desperate to protect his fragile reputation.
Mignini kept his original script intact. His fantasy storyline only required one casting change. Mignini simply removed Patrick Lumumba and cast Rudy Guede in the second supporting role. He now had his "revised" trio. His cast was once again complete.
Amanda Knox barely knew Rudy Guede. She saw him come and go on two occasions because he played basketball with the boys that lived below Amanda's flat. Amanda did place him on a police list of visitors to the downstairs flat, but couldn't even provide his name. Raffaele Sollecito didn't know Rudy at all. Raffaele had only been dating Amanda for six days. Was it really credible to suggest that these three people, who were virtual strangers, got together to commit a brutal sex crazed murder? Could it even be possible that these two young men would take orders from Amanda, a young woman that they both hardly knew? Add the fact that there is no evidence to back up this story and the logical answer would be no.
Mignini would provide multiple motives over a course of time suggesting why Amanda Knox would want to harm Meredith Kercher. His suggested motives included resentment, drug use, theft and hate. None of these motives were backed up by any evidence but that didn't seem to matter. Mignini presented his fantasy to a jury, leading to the wrongful convictions of Amanda and Raffaele on December 4, 2009.
Did the court really buy Mignini's fantasy?
Giancarlo Massei was the residing judge in the first trial. Italian courts have a post-trial obligation that is not seen in the United States. The court is required to write a report called a motivation explaining the reasoning that led to their conclusions. In this case, the court’s motivation document was released to the public on March 4, 2010. This report is also referred to as the Massei report because Judge Massei was its primary author. This report contains over 400 pages of speculation, going to great lengths to explain away any doubt regarding the convictions of Amanda Knox and Raffaele Sollecito. No one can argue that the report is short on words, but one thing it most certainly lacks is common sense.
The court dismissed the prosecution’s theory that Meredith was murdered because of a sex game gone wrong and there was no suggestion that Amanda resented Meredith. The court also makes no mention of the three alleged attackers meeting up at any time prior to the attack as the prosecution suggested. The court believes that Rudy Guede was the instigator and Amanda and Raffaele just decided to join in. In order for this theory to work, common sense must be thrown out the window.
Amanda and Raffaele had been dating for just under a week at the time of the murder. During that time, Amanda had been sleeping at Raffaele’s so the two could be alone. The court suggested that Amanda and Raffaele decided to change their routine on the night of the murder. Instead of enjoying the complete privacy of Raffaele’s apartment, the court believes that they went to the cottage to be intimate in Amanda’s room. Why would Amanda and Raffaele leave the privacy of Raffaele’s apartment to go the cottage where Amanda’s roommate would be home? Meredith hadn’t told anyone she planned to be away. To suggest that Amanda and Raffaele would prefer the cottage over Raffaele’s apartment makes little sense.
The court’s theory of the attack is mind-boggling. The court suggested that Amanda and Raffaele were being intimate in Amanda’s room when they heard Meredith getting attacked. At that time, they both went to Meredith’s room and witnessed the attack in progress. Influenced by smoking marijuana along with Raffaele’s memories of violent comic books, they decided to join in on the attack.
Massei stated "It is a crime that happened without any planning, without any animosity or rancorous feeling against the victim that in some way could be seen as a preparation and predisposition to the crime"
Massei's suggestion that the murder wasn't premeditated, meant he needed a reason for Raffaele's kitchen knife to somehow make it over to the cottage so it could be used in the murder. Massei's report states that Raffaele most likely suggested to Amanda that she should carry the knife in her purse for protection. Really? How many women carry large bulky kitchen knives around in their purse for protection? There is absolutely no proof to suggest that Raffaele ever encouraged Amanda to carry his kitchen knife for protection. The idea was completely fabricated by Massei.
Massei's theory is not just ridiculous, his theory is insane. Why would Amanda decide to help a virtual stranger attack and murder her friend? Why would Raffaele go along? How would they have known that Guede would not attack them? Are we really supposed to believe they both entered the room and saw the attack in progress, and not only had absolutely no fear of the attacker but also decided to assist in the attack?
In conclusion, the court agreed with Mignini in part, by buying the trio portion of the story, but disagreed on who instigated the attack. The court also decided to create an even more absurd scenario than Mignini's when theorizing about how the attack began. Sadly Massei was willing to further complicate the storyline, forever clouding the truth, in order to to prevent the system from having to admit to a mistake.
Meredith Kercher's murder was brutal but it was not complicated. The case only became complicated when two innocent people were included in the equation.