Newcomers to this blog are advised to begin with the first two posts, Just the Facts, Ma'am and Case Solved, which explain in very general terms why I believe I've solved this case. Some important questions are answered in the following post, Misunderstandings, Misconceptions, Misdirections. After that feel free to browse whatever topics might interest you (see blog archive).

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Wednesday, February 5, 2014

More on Amanda Knox

OK, now this case in Italy is starting to get under my skin, God help me. One reason it intrigues me so much is the existence of so many themes in common with the Ramsey case. In both we find a crime scene with "no sign of forced breakin." Nevertheless, in both we have a broken window to account for, a window through which no one apparently could have passed, strongly suggesting the staging of an intruder breakin. We have, in both cases, a huge debate over the meaning of DNA evidence. Both cases are characterized by a violent sexual attack. We also have reports of a scream. 

And in both cases we have two people, a closely bonded male-female pair, who have become the focus of attention, either as co-conspirators or innocent victims. Finally, from looking over some of the websites devoted to the Kercher case, we find, as with the Ramsey case, a striking division into two diametrically opposed camps, one insisting the suspect couple is completely innocent, the other absolutely positively convinced of their guilt, each camp treating the other with total contempt.

Oh and one more thing. Once again, as in the Ramsey case, we have a plethora of highly contested "evidence," a morass fully worthy of the Ramsey morass -- so complicated that it would literally be impossible to explain to everyone's or even anyone's satisfaction every single detail and what it might mean. A very interesting summary of the case has been presented by the Italian Supreme Court of Cassation which ruled, last year, that Knox and Sollecito must be retried. I recommend this extremely thorough review, as it covers so much of the evidence so completely, and from the perspective of both sides. The only problem: it is simply indigestible. Perhaps a genius such as Magnus Carlsen, capable of keeping in mind the chess positions of several opponents at once, blindfolded, might be able to make some sense out of it, but I doubt he'll ever be called upon by either side to do so. The prosecution has insisted that, in order to be understood, all the evidence needs to be coordinated into a single "big picture," but it's very hard to see how anyone could possibly do that -- there are simply too many puzzle pieces, and in each and every instance, there are serious points of contention that must be sorted out and resolved.

Is it possible to apply the basic principle I've applied in the Ramsey case? I.e., to simply ignore, at first, all the apparently inconclusive elements, and focus only on the known and uncontested facts -- waiting to fill in the blanks only in the light of a careful analysis of what is absolutely known to be the case? Actually I think the same principle can in fact be applied to the Kercher case, which, as it seems to me, is much easier to solve than the Ramsey case.

The key fact, as I see it, is in the realm of what could be called "negative evidence." Because it looks very much to me as though in this case absence of evidence is indeed evidence of absence. It is an uncontested fact that unmistakeable signs of Rudy Guede's presence are all over the room in which Meredith Kerchner was, literally, slaughtered. The investigators found his bloody fingerprints, his bloody footprints, and several samples of his DNA in Kercher's room along with the body of the victim. While there has been some dispute over whether or not parts of the room had been cleaned, it is simply inconceivable that a second or third party actively assisting in the murder would not also have left equally abundant evidence of his or her presence all over the scene. The prosecution has even contended that Amanda Knox attacked Kercher with a knife while Guede and Sollecito held her arms behind her back, yet no trace of Knox's presence has been found in that room, no fingerprints, footprints or DNA, nothing. Nor has any trace of any bloody clothing belonging to Knox ever been found. 

The best the prosecution was able to come up with, as far as that room is concerned, was some traces of Sollecito's DNA on clasps from Kercher's bra. I'll deal with that evidence presently. But for now I have to insist that it is inconceivable to think that anyone participating in such a violent, bloody attack, would leave NO trace of her presence anywhere in the room where the attack took place. And it is equally impossible to assume that every single trace of her presence could have been cleaned up without also cleaning up every trace of Guede's presence as well, which was certainly not the case. When we add that DNA is a molecule, visible only through a microscope, it is once again inconceivable that Knox could have removed her DNA from such a scene to the point that none was found.

As far as Sollecito's DNA is concerned, if he too had been an active participant in this bloody slaughter, evidence of his presence would also, as with Guede, been all over the place. So it is very suspicious indeed when all the prosecution has come up with are some traces of his DNA on that bra clasp. Suspicious as far as the prosecution is concerned, not as far as Sollecito is concerned, because clearly he too, like Knox, could not have been involved. In fact there are many very childish contentions on the part of the prosecution that give them away as hopelessly biased against Knox and Sollecito and unwilling to simply face the facts.

In any case, the bra clasp in question had been lying in the room for about 40 days before it was examined for DNA, time enough for contamination to have taken place. And even if there had been no contamination, we are after all talking about trace DNA, of the sort we've already encountered in the Ramsey case. As has already been explained both on this blog and in James Kolar's book, DNA can easily be transferred in a completely innocent manner, from one person to another or from a person to an object. And secondary transfer is also perfectly possible. A little discussed fact is that Knox and Kercher shared the same bathroom -- meaning that there would have been countless opportunities for DNA from either of them or from people with whom they had been in intimate contact, to be transferred in either direction. Obviously DNA from Sollecito would have been all over Knox, so indirect transfer from her to Kercher would certainly have been possible. Since Kercher obviously handled her bra clasp, the traces of Sollecito's DNA could have gotten there from the hands of the victim herself, just as the trace DNA found on JonBenet could have been innocently transferred to her longjohns and crotch area by JonBenet herself. Since Kercher's bra straps had been cut rather than unfastened by her attacker, it's also possible that the last person to handle the clasps was not the attacker but Kercher herself.

I could stop right here, because on the basis of the above FACTS there is no case to be made against either Knox or Sollecito, regardless of anything else the prosecution may have found or thought they found. But hey, I'm on a roll, so why stop now? :-)

Every other piece of so-called "evidence" has to be considered on the basis of the facts presented  above. Yes, footprints in which Kercher's blood was mingled with Knox's DNA were found elsewhere in the building. However, according to Knox's account, she noticed some blood on the floor when entering the building the morning after the murder, but took a shower anyhow, assuming it to be menstrual blood. It stands to reason that she might well have stepped into some of that blood in her bare feet before or after showering. It stands to reason also that traces of her DNA might have gotten mingled with traces of Kercher's, and vice versa, through innocent transfer, since, as stated above, she and Meredith shared the same bathroom. 

This could in fact explain the alleged traces of Kercher's DNA apparently found on Sollecito's kitchen knife, absurdly identified by the prosecution as the murder weapon. This is yet another example of the lengths the prosecution went to in their effort to fabricate evidence out of thin air. Significantly, no blood was found on the knife, only "DNA" -- obviously only a minute trace. Since as stated above, Knox and Kercher shared the same bathroom, the latter's DNA could have gotten onto the knife when handled by Knox -- or even by Sollecito. The absence of blood means that this DNA is of no consequence and can't be linked to the crime. It is, moreover, very difficult to believe that a murderer would take the trouble of returning his murder weapon to his own home rather than simply discarding it.

One of the most interesting aspects of this case, as with the Ramsey case, is the suspiciously broken window in the room of one of the other women living in the house (who happened to be away on vacation at the time). According to the prosecution, this window is evidence of a staged breakin, and in this instance they are probably right. Glass from the window was found on top of many items strewn on the floor by the intruder, which strongly suggests it was broken only after those items reached the floor. Moreover, this particular window is located fully 12 feet from ground level, with no sign of anything nearby that could have been used to assist any intruder wanting to climb up and into it. Also, no glass from the window was found on the ground below it, suggesting it was broken from the inside while the shutters were still closed. Clearly, as in the Ramsey case, no one could have entered via that window.

The prosecution contends that Knox and only Knox would have had a motive to stage an intruder breakin, since she was the only one other than the victim currently living in that house. However, it is also possible to argue that Knox, as someone familiar with the house, would have known very well about the 12 foot drop and would thus have realized how absurd it would be to stage a breakin at that point -- while someone such as Guede, unfamiliar with the house, and unable to look out to see the 12 foot drop thanks to the closed shutter, would be far more likely to choose that window as a staged entry point, recognizing his error only after he had opened the shutter. 

The prosecution has naively contended that Guede would have had no reason to stage such a breakin. However, his story has always been that he was in the bathroom, after having had consensual relations with Kercher, when he heard her scream and then observed an intruder running from the scene. Since as should now be clear, Guede was the one, and the only one, who attacked Kercher, and in such a sloppy manner as to leave evidence of his presence all over the room, he may well have realized that he'd sooner or later be identified. So, to make his "intruder" alibi more convincing it would certainly have been in his interest to stage such a breakin, especially since Kercher voluntarily admitting him to the house was part of his story. In any case, given the complete absence of any trace of Knox's presence at the murder scene, the insistence that she and only she would have had reason to stage a breakin seems pointless and unreasonable. And if she had wanted to stage such a breakin she certainly would not have done it at a window she knew to be so high over ground level as to be virtually inaccessible by an intruder.

Other instances where unwarranted assumptions have been made by the prosecution: 

The assumption that Kercher must have been attacked by more than one person since there was no sign of any defensive wounds on her hands and arms. Since there were no signs of anyone other than Kercher and Guede found in that room this in itself is enough reason to rule out multiple attackers, so some other reason for the lack of defense wounds must exist. Kercher could have been unconscious or only semi-conscious, and held up by her attacker when knifed, or her hands could have been bound, or Guede could have attacked her while holding her hands together. To insist on multiple attackers simply because there were no defensive wounds is just one more example of over-reach on the part of the prosecution, especially in view of the complete lack of any viable evidence consistent with a third or fourth party.

It's been contended that Knox must have stolen Kercher's key and locked her door, because Guede's footprints show no sign of him turning around to lock the door as he left Kercher's room. We must ask, first, what Knox would have had to gain by locking that door. This reminds me of the argument that the Ramseys hid the body before calling 911 to delay its discovery by the police long enough to somehow convince them of their innocence. Knox would have known very well that sooner or later that room would be opened, so what possible motive would she have had to delay the discovery of the crime? Guede, on the other hand, would certainly have wanted that discovery to be delayed as long as possible, to give him as much time as possible to get as far away as possible from that house and ultimately out of the country. So I'm sorry if careful examination of Guede's footprints told certain forensic "experts" that he could not have paused to lock that door. In fact if anything can be said about this case, it is that it's been obscured by an over reliance on dubious forensics to the detriment of simple logic and common sense.




73 comments:

  1. First, thanks a million, and I mean that sarcastically. I'm hooked on the Kercher case. I need to get hooked on another murder case about as much as I need a hole in my head. So thanks a million :-)

    Another similarity between the two cases is that many people have convinced themselves of someone's guilt based on what they perceive to be inappropriate or suspicious behavior. I'm going to try not to develop any opinion based on behavior.

    Over the years, as I've delved into the JBR case, I've learned some lessons I can apply to the Kercher case. 1., stay away from the forums -endlessly circular discussion of minutiae will not help clarify anything. 2. Never believe anything the first time you read it, even if it's from a credible source. Make sure it's true by seeing it repeatedly, from multiple -credible- sources. 3. Most of the websites are either pro-Knox or anti-Knox. Read both. 4. Motive can't always be discerned. Sometimes motive can only be figured out after guilt is established, sans motive.

    From my readings on the case over the past couple days, it does start to appear there are serious problems with the forensics, namely improper handling, not following correct procedures for LCN dna testing, and high likelihood of contamination.

    I agree that it seems unlikely Knox/Sollecito could have been in Meridith's room, helping Guede kill her (or killing her while Guede sat on the throne) w/o leaving considerable DNA behind. Yet there is nothing from Knox and only the trace of Sollecito on the clasp.

    I like your point that Guede would also have a motive to stage a break in. However, I'm not sure I agree, at this point, that it was staged.

    There is a rock on the floor, which is where it would be if it came sailing through the window. (Admittedly it would also be there if dropped there as staging) there is glass on a blue mat, showing a "spray" pattern, away from the window, consistent with the window being broken from the outside. The windows swing in (as in the Ramsey case) so breaking them from the outside of the pane, but from inside the room would leave glass shards off to the side of the window opening, not directly in front of the opening. http://www.injusticeinperugia.org/RonHendry------2.html

    While we don't have to deny Rudy's claim, that Meridith let him in, outright, certainly there is reason to be doubtful. If Kercher didn't let him in then he must have gotten in via an actual, rather than staged, break in. It turns out that for someone in good shape and reasonably athletic it's not really that hard to get in that window.

    http://www.injusticeinperugia.org/EnteringCottageThroughWindow.html

    So while I'm not convincing myself of anything at this point, it does appear that the break in could be real.

    CH

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  2. Ugh. I know some people don't want to look at behaviour, but I'd love to hear anyone's explanation for the ridiculous myriad of lies Knox and Sollecito have laid out since being arrested. And these lies have been proven outright, as they both have changed their stories numerous times. Please tell me why Sollecito claimed to be on his computer when in fact, his computer showed no activity and his cell phone was off during the hours of and after the murder.

    What could they have been doing that was so horrible that they wouldn't just fess up...even when on trial for their lives? Listen to the "911" calls Sollecito made. Why does he hang up as soon as the operator starts to delve into the details about the "burglary?" I know this is not evidence of guilt, but I'd love to know why all of these things occurred.

    And yes, yes, Knox says she was bullied into lying, and perhaps she wasn't treated very well while being questioned but, to me, that just doesn't justify the lies she told. Read her own written statement, made while at the police station. I find it telling.

    I've read a couple pro-Amanda books on the case, followed the media, and looked at websites from both sides. I initially thought she was innocent, and while lies and weird behaviour do not necessarily equate with guilt, I'd love someone to tell me why the two have lied over and over again. I've looked at the evidence and I agree with the Italian court upholding her conviction. As sad as it is.

    Oh, and I read recently that the DNA evidence from the knife in Sollecito's apartment has been thrown out, and perhaps never existed, so let's leave that out of the equation. But then again...why did Sollecito lie so outlandishly when confronted with this "evidence" and say that he had cut Meridith while cooking with her one day (something that clearly NEVER happened).

    And please don't say that he was so afraid of what might happen, and this made him lie. At some point, the lies themselves have to become evidence. Look at the lies told by Jodi Arias...these were evidence of her guilt. Big time.

    And while I commend your thinking, Doc, on the break-in, I really don't believe Guede had the forethought to go into Fillomena's room and stage a break in. None of his DNA was found in THAT room. And I don't believe he returned hours later to move her body and cut her bra off of her. That evidence has to give one pause.

    No, I believe the staged break in is evidence of the same thing it is evidence of in the Ramsey case...an inside job.

    But this is just my opinion. At least the Kercher case has had a trial...more than the Ramsey case can probably hope for. Knox and Sollecito have had their day in court (perhaps too many days!) and they couldn't even present a united front. Their consultants both gave widely differing theories about what might have happened. If the best defense they had was to throw everything at the court in the hopes that some theory might stick, then that's really tragic. They should have told the truth and their mutual defense should have been that truth.

    Perhaps I'm rambling. Thanks, Doc for your ideas both on the Ramsey case, and the Kercher. I agree with everything you say on the former, but not so much on the latter. See, we can disagree and still be civil! :)

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    1. It is untrue that Knox and Sollecito told a myriad of lies. The truth is that the cops forced their own version of events on Amanda, making her "imagine" things. However her handwritten notes from Nov. 6 and especially Nov. 7 are clear evidence of her innocence.

      Your claim that "Sollecito lie[d] so outlandishly when confronted with this "evidence" and say that he had cut Meridith [sic] while cooking with her one day" is an outlandish lie itself and suggests that you are not a genuine doubter but a food soldier in the vicious anti-Knox, anti-Sollecito, pro-injustice campaign active for many years.

      Sollecito did not say he had cut Meredith. He did not say that to an investigator, a lawyer or a judge. In fact, the prosecution did not even ask to cross-examine him during the trial.

      Sollecito was kept in solitary confinement after arrest. He kept notes in his cell- call it a diary if you wish. When confronted with the absurd finding of DNA on his kitchen knife (obtained in violation of basic rules of good science, hence meaningless), he tried to find a logical explanation, and one scenario he thought of was Meredith accidentally cut with the knife. His diary was later seized by the police.

      If you insist that "to say" equals "to make a hypothesis in one's private diary", I don't think there's a reason to go on with the argument.

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  3. I agree that they both lied, and that it seems very strange. Yet if they are involved, then, as Doc points out, where is their dna? Why is Guede's there in Kercher's room yet AK/RS left no dna? (setting aside the one trace on the clasp which could well be from contamination) This is why I stay away from behavior.

    The question about RS and his computer is especially interesting. From what I've read he was a computer science student, so he'd certainly have been aware that it would be easy for the police to check whether or not he was on his computer at certain times. It seems strange then that he'd claim to have been on the computer when he was not.

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    1. With regard to their lying and changing their stories, all I'll say for now is this: if they were in it together as the prosecution claims, then it's hard to see why they would have needed to change their story or to lie. On the other hand if they were innocent, but being manipulated by the police, then one or both could have been panicked into lying, altering the truth or even developing some false memories under pressure. Inducing a suspect into a false memory of what happened is by now a well known "feature" of police interrogations and there are many such verified instances over the last several years. The bottom line, as CH has emphasized, is the lack of any real evidence of their presence in Kercher's room during the attack. To insist that they were present and actively involved in the attack despite such a lack of evidence strikes me as unreasonable and irresponsible. If nothing else, it is certainly more than enough cause for reasonable doubt. Why continue to pursue them in the face of such doubt?

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    2. You should not agree that they both lied because they did not. Amanda was forced to imagine things by the cops - and recanted on Nov. 6-7 (see her "memoriale" 1 and 2). Sollecito did not lie at all. The liar here is the poster that made those claims. See my response to him above. What Sollecito wrote in his prison diary cannot and should not be interpreted as a statement. It was merely an attempt to explain an absurd forensic finding.

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    3. The night Amanda was questioned by the police she accompanied Sollecito to the station because they wanted to question him. They were not even interested in her and asked her to stay away. But, when Sollecito did not support her alibi (he told the police she left his apartment at 9:00 pm and didn't return until 1:00am, suspiciously the time when the murder occurred-I believe he was trying to implicate his girlfriend) then the police decided to question her. They called in an interpreter and she didn't arrive until 12:30 am to start the questioning. By 1:45 am they had Amanda's typed, signed and sealed statement (confession) of being at the scene with Lumumba. The police were "shocked." There was no reason for her to implicate herself. They were questioning her about the text she received from Lumumba because they thought she left to meet him. They immediately told her to get a lawyer because she had placed herself at the scene. So this "idea" of being question for hours and manipulated by police isn't really supported by the facts. It is true that Sollecito never testified in court but neither he nor Knox supported each other's alibi for almost four years. His initial statement to the police was that he and Amanda were together all night but later changed his statement at the police station and did not support Amanda’s alibi and this is what caused Amanda to change her story. It is difficult to know how much culpability Sollecito had. There was no reason for him to write in his diary that he had pricked Kercher because he knew she had never been to his apartment. He might have only been involved in the cover up. Someone did move the body after onset of lividity set in. This could not have been Guede because it takes at least 6 hours for lividity to “set in.” He was seen later that night at a disco. The evidence indicates he got out of there rather quickly so someone else had to move the body. But the idea that he staged the break-in doesn’t make sense since there was no reason to stage a break-in. There was a reason for him to lock Meredith’s door but the physical evidence didn’t support that. There was just as much reason or more for Knox and Sollecito to lock Meredith’s door. That way they could explain why they hadn’t called the police immediately. Also, this idea of no evidence of Knox or Sollecito in Meredith’s room is easily explained. They had 12 hours to clean the crime scene. Knox’s reading lamp was found in Meredith’s room. They went over the room with the fine tooth comb. As a matter of fact I believe they left Guede’s prints and blood to implicate him and away from themselves. They took their shoes off when the cleaned the room but did not realize trace amounts of Meredith’s blood were on their feet. When the police arrived at the scene Guede’s bloody shoe prints were obvious but their foot prints were obscured because they were very light and not observable. That is why they over looked them. They intended to leave Guede’s prints there but didn’t realize they were leaving their prints there. Also, I think Sollecito’s footprint on the bathmat was made late that morning and he probably just thought it was a water print. You can’t just explain away their prints as contamination. It doesn’t make sense with the evidence. And, you can’t say Guede stuck around for 6 hours and moved the body.

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    4. Also, Knox testified she washed herself in the bathroom where Guede left his feces. Why would she do that and not flush the toilet?

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    5. "There was no reason for her to implicate herself."

      Exactly. So why would she have wanted to, if she were in fact guilty? Why would she have wanted to implicate an innocent man if she knew very well the evidence pointed to someone else? If her intention was to implicate Guede, why wouldn't she have placed HIM at the scene instead of Lumumba? If she were in fact guilty and her alibi had come undone, then she could have claimed she'd gone for a walk and forgotten about it. There was nothing to be gained by handing the police the "confession" she gave them, whether it was within an hour or ten hours, no matter. Which is why I believe her story about being intimidated into signing that document. False confessions are not that unusual. You are simply taking the police version of what happened at face value and refusing to consider that Amanda's version could be true.

      Also why would they have deliberately left evidence of Guede's presence while cleaning up after themselves? What would they have had to gain by that? If Guede was their accomplice it would have been far better for them to clean up after him as well. That way, all the police would have would be evidence of some anonymous intruder who cleaned up after himself.

      Finally it is simply not possible to believe they could have cleaned up every scrap of evidence in that room pointing to them while leaving Guede's prints and DNA in so many places. And as I wrote earlier, if they had cleaned up so completely in the bedroom then why not just as completely in the hallway?

      Nothing about the case makes sense if we include them as conspirators in this crime, either one or both. There were admittedly many questions raised during the three trials, but questions of this sort are common in a great many cases, because nothing in real life is straightforward. We certainly see this in the Ramsey case, where if you are to take every strange lead seriously, then at least a dozen people broke into that house and killed the girl that night.

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    6. Their involvement is the only thing that makes sense. She panicked because Sollecito dropped her alibi and so she accused Lumumba. The police would ask how she knew it was Lumumba so she placed herself at the cottage to hear the scream not realizing she was implicating herself. If she had accused Guede then she knew it could come back to her. She probably hoped Guede would get away and not be caught as long as there was no evidence implicating her and if he did get caught and squealed on them they could say well where's the evidence?. They cleaned away any evidence implicating themselves but left Guede's, but inexplicably her boyfriend changed his story (under pressure), she then accused Lumumba because their plan was starting to come unraveled like what happens to most criminals. Why would the Italian Justice System try to frame innocent kids? What would be in it for them? They had their man. I personally think Sollecito was only involved in the cover-up and then realized what have I got myself into?

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    7. This idea of a false confession is lame. She didn't really confess and say she did it. She blamed somebody else. She was only questioned for about an hour. No all night session like she later claimed. She told lies upon lies. She lied at every turn. Every step of the way she lied. She lied to the postal police. To the on scene police and investigators, later to the detectives and magistrate, to her apartment mates, to the press, and to her friends and family. She has lied every step of the way.

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    8. Also, who moved the body if it wasn't Knox and Sollecito? Guede could not have done it.

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    9. First of all it's not clear that she lied. There was obviously a lot of confusion regarding who did what and when and there was good reason for both of them to be confused, especially since they'd been smoking dope that night and probably passed out at some point. Secondly, when assessing the alleged "lies" of a suspect it is essential to ask the all important question: what did the so-called lie do for the accused? How did it help her? I see nothing in any of these "lies" that helped them. People who are guilty put a story together and stick to it.

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    10. You say the body was moved six hours after death? Why on earth would they want to return to the scene and move the body after all that time? And if they'd been cleaning up at that time, what happened to all the cleaning materials they used? And all the bloody clothing they'd been wearing? And once they'd cleaned up why would they have remained at the scene? Why not leave it for someone else to report the breakin?

      Police reported no scent of bleach when they arrived and found no cleaning materials at the scene. And don't forget the first police to arrive surprised them, so they would not have had chance to hide anything.

      My guess is that Rudy probably quickly changed clothes and then returned to the scene in a futile attempt to try to clean up and at that time must have moved the body. The coroner may well have been wrong about the time of death and the time the body was moved -- mistakes of that sort are not uncommon.

      The bottom line remains: there was NO evidence of Amanda's presence in that room and only one trace of DNA from Rafaelle that could easily have been due to innocent transfer -- in contrast to multiple evidence of Rudy's presence. Assuming Amanda's DNA was found mixed with Meredith's blood in the hall, then why wasn't the same mix found in the room where she was murdered? This so-called "evidence" just doesn't add up. And when we couple that with a complete lack of any viable motive, there simply is no case to be made against them. Only a long series of dubious assumptions that, taken together, make no sense.

      The police rushed to judgement before the actual murderer had been identified and should at that point have exonerated Amanda and her friend. But that would have been embarrassing as they had been so foolish as to confidently claim they'd already solved the case and "knew" who did it. So it became necessary in their minds to plod on with their pet theory no matter what.

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    11. Rudy was seen later that night at a disco until late in the morning. The idea that Rudy returned and moved the body is preposterous. That's a new one. Knox and Sollecito were up all night cleaning up the scene. They had 12 hours to clean the scene. When the police arrived the washing machine was going and Filomena said several of Meredith's items were in it. Who did that? Knox's reading lamp from her room was left in Kercher's room. Take a look at some photos of them together on the day of the murder. They did not look like they had a good night's sleep. They didn't use bleach they used soap and water. There were cleaning materials at the apartment and she was seen buying materials that morning. There was no rush to judgment it is just police get suspicious when witnesses change their stories and alibi's and tell lies. That has a tendency to make police suspicious. And, it really made them suspicious when Knox accused Lumumba and he spent two weeks in jail and then they found out he had a rock solid alibi and non of his DNA or prints were found at the scene. That has a tendency to make police suspicious. Oh, I no, there was no video of the murder. Damn Italian Police and their rush to judgment. They love falsely accusing American College Students. it does wonders for their tourism industry.

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    12. Interesting. According to a report in Fox News, Rudy was seen at the disco from 2 AM on. (http://www.foxnews.com/story/2007/11/26/suspect-in-slaying-british-coed-seen-dancing-at-disco-hours-after-murder/). And according to the "True Justice" site, the time of death has not clearly been established, but could have been as early as 9:30. (http://www.truejustice.org/ee/index.php?/tjmk/C441/) Even if it were as late as 11:30, that would still have given Rudy 2 1/2 hours to return to the scene in a panic to try to clean up, during which time he could have moved the body. Why is that "preposterous"? It's not unusual for a murderer to return to the scene of the crime. So if you want to argue that Amanda is the ONLY one who could have cleaned up, you are wrong. Rudy could certainly have returned, why not?

      I especially like the washing machine story because it's consistent with so much of the other so-called "evidence." For example, DNA "evidence" is meaningful only if it can be shown to be relevant. And the DNA evidence against AK and RS was NOT relevant, thus not really evidence. Similarly the so-called lies of AK and RS have no relevance because, even if they did lie (which is open to dispute), those "lies" didn't help them. The washing machine story resembles this other so-called "evidence" because on the surface it looks incriminating but on closer inspection means nothing. First of all it's not clear that the machine was actually found running when the postal police arrived. As I understand it, this wasn't even brought up at the trial. Secondly, the machine contained ONLY clothing of Meredith's, clothing NOT associated with her murder. NO clothing of AK's or RS's was found therein. Now doesn't that strike you as odd that the criminals would choose to wash such items rather than their own bloody clothes? And if they had, wouldn't traces of Meredith's blood have been found in that machine?

      And if they didn't use bleach, as you say, then how were they able to remove all trace of their DNA from the bedroom floor? Ordinary soap and water won't do it.

      And yes, the police would have had reason to suspect AK and RS at first, because Amanda was the only one in town with a key to that house, and, at first glance, the window breakin must have looked unlikely, because of the height. So it made sense for the police to question them. But after Guede's presence had been so clearly established, then there was no longer ANY reason to suspect these two, other than some inconsistencies that could easily be explained as due to confusion from smoking pot. Sorry. You are well informed on many aspects of this case, but your logic is skewed by bias.



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    13. Oh and excuse me, but the report also says that Guede was seen at that club until 4:30 AM. So why couldn't he have returned to the house to try to clean up after leaving the disco?

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  4. I suppose the Italian government sees evidence of their footprints in Kercher's blood. They must see SOMEthing for them to rule the way they have...

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    1. None such evidence exists.

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    2. There absolutely is.

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  5. Let me try to explain why you should not believe the prosecution's tale of a stage break-in. Please have a look at the ruling by Hellmann and Zanetti acquitting the couple in 2011. It debunks the "staged break-in" hypothesis. (http://hellmannreport.wordpress.com/contents/reasons-for-the-decision/staging-of-burglary) Also, I recommend Ron Hendry's book, "Single Attacker Theory of the Murder of Meredith Kercher" or at least his presentation here: http://www.injusticeinperugia.org/RonHendry------2.html. Refer to this gallery (http://www.injusticeinperugia.org/PhotoGallery.html) to get more pictures.

    "Glass from the window was found on top of many items strewn on the floor by the intruder, which strongly suggests it was broken only after those items reached the floor."

    The first thing that comes to mind is that Filomena's small room was probably a mess anyway, with things strewn all over the floor because she had nowhere to keep them. Filomena's closet looks tiny.

    Then, was the glass REALLY on top of things? Hellmann quotes Filomena:

    “…PRESIDING JUDGE: Excuse me, what does a jumble mean?

    ANSWER: It was a jumble of glass, clothes, glass, …

    PRESIDING JUDGE: So they were also under the glass?

    ANSWER: Yes, they were also under, but also above.

    PRESIDING JUDGE: So this is what you mean by a jumble.

    ANSWER: Yes, yes…”

    So it was a mess when Filomena found it (and was allowed into her room to get her things, incredibly).

    "Moreover, this particular window is located fully 12 feet from ground level, with no sign of anything nearby that could have been used to assist any intruder wanting to climb up and into it."

    This is a speculative conclusion not borne out by experiment. You don't have any assistance, it turns out. Luca Maori, one of Sollecito's lawyers, asked one of his younger colleagues at the office to climb up that wall. The man did it easily without taking off his tie, and the video was played at the trial (I think 2009 but definitely 2011). Also in 2013, there was a reenactment of the climb by the UK Channel 5. Rudy Guede was a promising basketball player before his laziness and lack of discipline ruined his career. He had broken and entered three times in 2007, once using a rock to break the window. It's his mode of operation.

    "Also, no glass from the window was found on the ground below it, suggesting it was broken from the inside while the shutters were still closed."

    Again, this speculative mode of reasoning is troubling. The way broken glass falls is not at all obvious. One needs to experiment to understand it. Filomena said in Dec. 2007: "I had pulled the shutters, but I don’t think I closed them." She said they bulged and just wouldn't close completely. She later claimed she had closed them, but the judge preferred her 2007 statement to her 2009 testimony.

    If the shutters were not quite closed, the burglar would first open them, which can be done easily by standing on the window grill of the downstairs apartment.

    The rest was demonstrated by defense consultant Francesco Pasquali. He had a rock and a window and showed how glass would fall as a result. It was very close to what was observed in Filomena's room.

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    1. Thanks so much for all this useful info. What you say is very interesting and seems convincing. However, as we well know, there is another side that sees things very differently -- and that side has, for now, won out.

      My larger point is that all such questions are beside the point when considered in the light of the known and undisputed facts. And these facts tell us that neither Knox nor Sollecito could have been present at the crime scene -- because if they had, the prosecution would have found clear and unmistakeable signs of their presence -- same holds, by the way, for the so-called Ramsey "intruder."

      In the light of these FACTS, there is no longer any reason to assume that Amanda Knox staged anything. So some other explanation must be provided. What that explanation is can certainly be disputed, and has. But ultimately it's beside the point. By taking it seriously and arguing as though it mattered you are in fact falling into a trap because there is really no way you can actually prove you are right. All you can do is present evidence and argue and that is ultimately no help. You become enmeshed in what I've called the morass, and there is no way out of that morass believe me. From years of experience with the Ramsey case I know that very well.

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    2. You need to read the Supreme Court of Cassation's rebuke of the Hellman report. Romanelli's room was always very neat. Did you read her testimony. It is available. She said her laptop bag had been moved to the floor and that glass shards were on top of it as well as some other items. Also, Officer Battestelli the on scene officer testified the break-in appeared staged. Also, the mixed blood profile of Knox and Kercher was underneath items in Filomena's room. It had rained the night of the murder so to think that Guede could have ascended the wall 12 feet to the window twice without anyone seeing him and leaving any evidence is pretty fantastic. Also, why would Guede lock Meredith's door but leave the front door wide open?

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    3. There are many ways for glass shards to be moved around while someone is ransacking a room. Shards could have become attached to Guede's clothing and fallen off while he was in the room, for example. Some might have become attached to some clothing that got tossed on the floor, picked up and then discarded again upside down. Shards were also found under some of the items and that too has to be explained.

      If Guede had been wearing gloves, then his prints would not have been found in that room. He might later have taken his gloves off so he could lay his bare hands on his victim while he raped her.

      And how could there have been a "mixed blood" profile of Knox and Kercher when Knox was found to have had no open wounds anywhere on her body. So where did her blood come from? And if it was just her DNA, then I'm sorry but she'd been in that room in the past and DNA does not come with a time stamp.

      This whole line of reasoning is based on assumptions and is simply embarrassing. It's clear the police and the prosecution were biased. The technical term is: "confirmation bias" or cherry picking.

      Finally if it were so unlikely that Guede could have climbed into that room then it's just as unlikely that Knox or anyone else would have selected it for a staged breakin. As the prosecution itself pointed out, there were more convenient places for someone to break in - and by the same token for someone to stage a breakin.

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  6. Doc, in my office at work we were just debating Amanda Knox being innocent or not, and you have such a brilliant way of looking at a case. I have written to you in the past about approaching an Erin Moriarty or another investigative reporter and I wanted to see if you had made any attempts. The West Memphis 3 would have rotted in jail for the rest of their lives had celebrities and the media not brought attention to the case. John Ramsey is an awful human being that committed a horendous crime and has been able to go on living his life. I dont know how many people read this blog, but please start a petition or something that we can sign to hopefully get the Ramsey case looked at again. Again, thank you for this blog as it will hopefully lead to justice.

    -J

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    1. Thanks, J. I have in fact contacted several people, both in the media and law enforcement, including the chief of police and the DA, inviting them to check out this blog. With NO response. I can understand this, by the way, because this case, as far as the media is concerned, is old news, and as far as law enforcement is concerned, is too much of a labyrinth to enter once again without some new and dramatic piece of evidence that can serve as a smoking gun. The last thing anyone thinks they need is a new theory.

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  7. So now, ignoring my own sage advice, I looked around and actually found the video that demonstrates the possibility that the window breakin might have actually happened: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8JL6nIkaYLs

    Here's another example of how easy it is for a sufficiently agile person to scale such a wall: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bIJyHFbM4pY

    So Alex certainly has a point.

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  8. the man hangs on to bars that were not there during the murder. just sayin

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    1. The bars were on the lower window at the time of the murder

      http://www.injusticeinperugia.org/EnteringCottageThroughWindow.html

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    2. i meant the upper bars

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    3. Watch all of the Channel 5 and you'll see the man do the climb without using the upper bars. He hangs on the bars once he's gotten there, sure. When there were no bars but merely broken glass, he would have burst into the room straight away.

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    4. That guy was a professional rock climber. Also, the night of the murder it was raining. There was no evidence of disturbance on the wall. And, the two people watching him were watching from the street above so he would have been easily visible to passers by. This is not the first place an intruder would try to enter. Too many things to go wrong. Also, no Guede evidence in Filomena's room or on the window. Is it possible? Yes. Is it probable? No.

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    5. Also, much easier to climb up there with the bars there. No evidence of bursting into room. it would have been impossible to crawl through the window from 12 feet below without hurting himself or making a lot of noise. So when he climbs up, back down, throws the rock, climbs back up, bursts through the window, Meredith is just in her room reading a book and wondering "gee, I wonder who's making all the noise? Must be a mouse."

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    6. Again, you are assuming you know more about the situation than you actually do. I've seen video of someone scaling that wall with great ease and with no noise. It's clear from the video that he could have entered that room with no problem. Also, one of the judges claimed the glass was distributed evenly on the windowsill, but that's not the case. The photo clearly shows all the glass on only one side of the sill, as though it had been pushed aside. If he'd been wearing gloves it's unlikely he'd have been cut. Also you are assuming Meredith was in the house at the time, but there is no reason to assume that either. She might have arrived after he'd broken in and surprised him.

      Additionally, it's hard to imagine why someone staging a breakin would think to go outside, find a large rock, come back and place the rock in the room to make it look like it had been tossed from outside. It's possible to break into a window with a small knife or screwdriver, so why go to all that trouble to retrieve a rock from outside where someone might see you?

      Guede was probably stoned and feeling reckless, so chose to engage in some gymnastics. Who knows?

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  9. I know, but the upper bars weren't there at the time of the murder, if they had been Rudy could not have got in. The man hangs on the bars, but it isn't necessary for him to hang on them to gain access to the house, in fact they make access impossible- which is why they were installed.

    So, it's hard to see what point you are trying to make. Access to the upper window was quite easy for someone of reasonable athletic ability.

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  10. He explains that no bars is not a problem at the end of that youtube problem.

    But wasn't there some evidence that no dust was disturbed on the outside of the window? Like the Ramsey Case?

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    1. Well, this is what I mean by the morass. There will probably never be any way to prove whether or not the breakin at that window was staged or real. No matter what argument one side presents, the other will always counter it.

      However, there IS a way to prove that only one person attacked Meredith Kercher, because only one person other than Meredith left clear evidence of his presence at the scene.

      So rather than argue endlessly over secondary issues, what I would recommend is to keep reminding all concerned about the FACT that Rudy Guede acted alone.

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    2. And by the way, the Ramsey case is very different in this respect. It IS possible to prove definitively that no one passed through the basement window of the Ramsey home that night.

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    3. No, they were talking about grass and that doesn't mean anything. Rudy climbed in at 9pm and the cops looked at the place at noon.

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  11. The importance of "discussing" the break in is simply to demonstrate that it could easily have been real. It didn't have to be staged. It could have been, but it didn't have to be.

    On the whole though, you are right Doc, the physical evidence suggests Rudy acted alone. No reason to get caught up in the "staging" of the break in, as Rudy was quite capable of breaking in for real, and he acted alone, so a real break in is quite likely. People who don't want to operate on facts will find all sorts of convoluted reasons to think AK/RS were involved, all sorts of reasons why the break in was staged, and so on.

    I never paid much attention to the case, but over the past few days have been reading about it. It's actually rather disappointing, I mean I expected complexity and a real challenge to figure out who did it. Turns out it's exceedingly simple. There is only evidence of Rudy at the murder scene. Therefore he must have acted alone. Why has this been endlessly discussed for several years when it's so straightforward?

    CH

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    1. It looks to me as though the case developed in a rather bizarre manner during the first week or so, and during that time the police focused on the only two people they could associate in any way with the crime scene: Knox and Sollecito. They then went to work trying to prove their case in any way they could. They obviously hit gold when they got Knox to finger Lumumba, and that was probably the turning point. When I first heard about that I too was convinced she must be involved and also had no sympathy for her at all.

      But we have to remember that Lumumba was on THEIR agenda, not hers at that time. They interpreted her "see you later" as meaning she was planning to get together with him later that evening, so they pushed her on that point until she cracked and went along.

      Then, when it turned out that Lumumba had an airtight alibi, and when Guede's prints and DNA were found at the crime scene, honest investigators would have thrown up their hands and admitted to their mistake. But by then things had gone too far and they were simply unprepared to do that. So they welded Guede onto their original fantastic theory about a satanic ritual or a sex game gone wrong and tried to make that stick by dredging up anything they could find that make their case. And now they are stuck with it. And by "they" I mean all of them, police, prosecutor, judges, etc. How embarrassing to have to admit that they put innocent people in prison for four years!!!!

      What gives them away is their focus on Sollecito's knife, the "murder weapon." Why? Because some trace of Kercher's DNA was found on it. No blood. Just DNA. Which could easily have been an indirect transfer from Knox's hand. Without any blood found the DNA means nothing. Not to mention the insanity of anyone wanting to take their murder weapon home with them rather than just dump it in the river.

      By the way, I've been banned from the "Placing Meredith First" forum, and in record time. I've been banned before but never this soon. Not surprising because they are just as dogmatic and intolerant in their views as any of the worst Ramsey case forums. I've gone out of my way to be polite and not direct any insulting remarks at anyone, but they simply cannot tolerate any opposing view. What a joke! But not so funny when the lives of two innocent people are being ruined.

      You're right, this case, when seen from above, is not at all complicated. But from the viewpoint of those who simply must be vindicated, no matter what, it has indeed become a morass, every detail of which must constantly be defended regardless of the absurdity of their position.

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    2. Here's something I just found, trolling around on the Internet (hey that's what I am, a Troll, guilty as charged): http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-24534110

      This is a recent article from BBC News specifically devoted to the DNA evidence in the Kercher case. I'd love to toss this in the face of the nasties on the "fry Amanda and Raffaele" site, but I'm sure it wouldn't make a dent in their iron determination.

      Sorry to be so outspoken but at the moment I'm mad as Hell. It would have been interesting to have an open minded debate with these people, but that's clearly impossible. Too bad for them.

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    3. Well, at least there's no need to spend several years trying to figure this out. It's a remarkably simple case.

      CH.

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  12. Doc, you totally don't understand the case against Knox and Sollecito. It is somewhat disappointing that you have drawn conclusions based on so little knowledge. Let me recommend you start at themurderofmeredithkercher.com. You don't understand the staged break-in(which is surprising since you seem to be an expert on staged break-ins), the false alibi's, the false accusation against Lumumba, how the police interrogation transpired and its actual length, all the mixed blood samples of Knox and victim DNA, the footprints revealed by luminol, the bathroom bloodstains revealed by luminol, the bra clasp and DNA (it wasn't a fragment and only the Y-chromosome like you say), the knife DNA and the implausibility of secondary transfer, the fact that Sollecito and Knox were at odds with each other and not supporting each other's alibi's, witness testimony contrary to Knox and Sollecito's version of events, statements made by Knox and Sollecito that only the killers could have known. It is very disappointing you have not spent time uncovering the facts of the case before including in your blog. Start with the above web page and also the Massei Report.

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    1. I've been spending a fair amount of time on this case, thank you. I've read a lot at various websites, including sites advocating against Knox and Sollecito. And I've read a good chunk of the Cassation Court summary of the case.

      Apparently a backup test revealed no blood in places where the luminol was initially claimed to reveal it. And the mixing of Kercher's and Knox's DNA is to be expected in a building they both shared. Apparently similar tests done in Sollecito's apt revealed mixed samples of his and Knox's DNA, also no surprise, since they both spent time there together.

      As for the window breakin, according to an independent expert the scatter of glass fragments in that room was consistent with the window being broken from outside, not inside. And the videos I linked to show very clearly how easy it is for an athletic person such as Guede to climb up to that window with no trouble at all and in no time. But even if it was staged, I see no evidence linking that staging to Knox or Sollecito. Guede himself may have staged it since part of his original story was that Meredith was murdered by an intruder, and that intruder would have needed an entry point for his story to be credible.

      The only thing I find troubling are the various reports regarding inconsistent versions of what happened by Knox and Sollecito, and of course, Knox's strange story about being in the house with Lumumba during the attack on Kercher.

      As you know, however, I don't simply equate the fact that someone is lying with guilt. Before accusing anyone I want to understand the reason for the lies and what that person might have gained from lying. Also I would want to make sure these are really lies and not the result of confusion -- or manipulation. As you know I am aware that Patsy Ramsey lied, but that does NOT mean I consider her to be involved in JonBenet's murder, or the coverup. Clearly I do not. Imo John manipulated Patsy into telling lies that supported his version of what happened, and there is reason to believe the Perugia authorities may have manipulated Knox and Sollecito in a similar manner.

      When I try to think logically about a story such as the Lumumba story initially told by Knox, what strikes me above all is the fact that this story in no way helped her -- in fact, if she had been deliberately lying to save herself, that story makes no sense. It places her at the scene of the crime, for God's sake, and it implicates someone she would have known very well to be innocent -- assuming she was involved in the murder and actually knew what happened. If she knew that Lumumba was not present, and Guede was, then she would certainly have known that Guede's prints and DNA would sooner or later be identified.

      She allegedly changed her story after learning that Sollecto had changed his and was no longer willing to provide her with an alibi. So if she had decided at that point to fess up and tell the truth, then why not get back at Sollecito and identify him, along with Guede, as one of the attackers? She could then claim she was present but didn't take part in the attack. If in fact she was involved then it seems only logical that this is the sort of story she would tell.

      (continued in next post)

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    2. Instead we hear a story having nothing to do with anything other than what her interrogators were trying to get her to say: that she and Lumumba were present in the house that night and were involved in the murder. This is not the response of someone lying to cover her ass, this is the response of someone completely confused and trying to understand what MIGHT have happened. And this is made clear by what she wrote shortly after her official statement. Regardless of whether she was questioned for several hours or only two hours (which might have seemed much longer than that), it's not difficult to see this story as the result of relentless harassment coupled with confusion. The story is clearly untrue, and if she were in her right mind she would have realized that, and realized how bad it would make her look regardless of whether or not she was involved. It's not the sort of story a guilty person would tell to save himself.

      As for inconsistencies in Sollecito's version of what happened, I don't know enough about the circumstances of his interrogation to say for sure, but I suspect he was probably intimidated in a similar manner. And very possibly was told that Knox was accusing him of leaving his apt that night. In any case, as it seems to me, if both were guilty and had agreed that each would furnish the alibi for the other, they would have stuck by their story and refused to change it. While the inconsistencies don't tell us they have to innocent, they are not necessarily signs of guilt either.

      I'd be very curious to learn more about the type of weed this couple had been smoking. It's been a long time for me, but I can tell you that some of that stuff can be pretty intense. I think it possible that the two of them may have blacked out that night, from the marijuana they'd been smoking, which would explain their obviously confusion and uncertainty about what happened and when. This may sound like a lame excuse, but I'm sorry, because my prime tool in such matters is logic above all. It simply makes no sense for them to be claiming uncertainty and confusion and changing their stories if they are guilty and trying to cover for themselves. Guilty people in such circumstances agree on a story and stick to it. Innocent people who are confused and honestly trying to be helpful can easily come across as suspicious.

      In any case, for me the bottom line is the lack of any evidence whatsoever linking Knox to the room where Kercher was murdered, and the lack of any solid evidence linking Sollecito to that room either (see my most recent post on the meaning of his DNA on those clasps). If we contrast that to the abundance of evidence placing Guede unequivocally in that room, then it seems clear there is no proof beyond reasonable doubt that Knox and Sollecito murdered Kercher. When we couple that with the complete lack of any viable motive for them to be involved with Guede in such an attack, then there is simply no case to be made against them.

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  13. Doc, she had met Lumumba earlier in the night to apparently score some drugs from him. She left Sollecito's apartment at 8:40 (as identified by a witness) and then met Lumumba near the cottage. She accused Lumumba after the police were questioning her about the text she received from him and she responded "see you later" to his text. Sollecito was asked to come to the police station not her. She insisted on coming anyway. They didn't suspect her they suspected Sollecito. And, they only started zeroing in on those two after their alibi's didn't corroborate. They only asked her to answer a few questions after Sollecito didn't corroborate her alibi. Read the account of the questioning and the testimony of the interpreter Donnini. The police were questioning her about the text from Lumumba and then informed her Sollecito said she left his apartment (her boyfriend was trying to implicate her). Again, they weren't suspecting her they were suspecting Sollecito. With these two facts and probably in the heat of the moment she gave Lumumba up because if she gave Guede she would be giving up someone who had knowledge of the murder and she probably wasn't sure if the police were lying to her or not (that is probably why she didn't turn on Sollecito.). She accused the one person who had no knowledge and who could not implicate her. At the police station the interpreter didn't arrive until 12:30 am Donnini's own testimony and the "confession" placing her at the scene was typed and signed by 1:45 am. The police immediately stopped questioning her and recommended she get a lawyer. They brought Mangini to read her rights and she offered another statement at 5:45 am. Mangini recommended again she get a lawyer. But she continued to babble on with these "imaginings" and she offered another unsolicited statement later in a hand written note.

    As for the staged break-in, what reason would Guede have to stage the break-in? The luminol evidence of his shoe prints go straight from the victim's room and out the front door. There are no traces of his shoe prints in Filomena's room. There was no evidence on the outside wall of anyone climbing up to the window. There was no disturbance on the plants or grass below. The glass shards were on top of the items that had been disturbed in Filomena's room. Nothing of value was taken from Filomena's room and Sollecito informed the police of this when they arrived before Filomena had gone through her items. You have to know Sollecito had only met Knox on October 19 and had only been to the apartment a couple of times. Two drops of the victim's blood mixed with Knox's DNA were found under the disturbed items and shards of glass in Filomena's room. It is funny you demonstrate in the Ramsey case that a staged break-in implicates someone living in the house but you don't make that same conclusion here. The knife found in Sollecito's apartment was compatible with the mortal wound. The examined (like you mentioned above) 90 other pieces of evidence in Sollecito's apartment and they either had Sollecito's or Knox's DNA or negative. Only the knife in question had Kercher's DNA (from a groove on the sharp edge of the blade I might add). Your theme in the Ramsey case was the devil is in the details. Not one piece of evidence or uncorroborated or curious statement proves guilt but when it piles upon piles. Alan Dershowitz who has a history of being on the side of the accused (13 of 15) in high profile cases recently stated there is strong evidence against Knox and "the devil is in the details." You need to understand all the details.

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    1. Thanks for this detailed and obviously sincere summary, plus argument. All I can say is that, as with the Ramsey case, we have a situation where, for every argument presented on one side, there is a counter argument presented on the other. This is what I have called "the morass." I am really trying to resist getting caught up in this morass because I realize very well that it leads nowhere. There are many things about this case that I don't know about and/or don't understand, but what I do know is that for every point you've made above there is a counter-point to be offered by the other side. Which is why I prefer to involve myself only with the undisputed facts. Which would make this case very simple indeed were it not for the controversy over Sollecito's DNA on the bra clasps. I've offered my own take on that in the following post, which you have probably read by now and responded to. I'll be heading there presently to respond to your response, but I can assure you that if we continue in this fashion it will be a never-ending story.

      As for the DNA on the knife, that too looks to me like innocent secondary or tertiary transfer. What makes it particularly unconvincing is the lack of any trace of blood. As far as the logic is concerned, it makes no sense that people who just used a knife to murder someone would want to return the murder weapon to their home. So the knife "evidence" can't be taken seriously I'm afraid. And without it, there is no link whatever between AK and the murder of Meredith Kercher.

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    2. "It is funny you demonstrate in the Ramsey case that a staged break-in implicates someone living in the house but you don't make that same conclusion here"

      Not funny at all. Because in this case there most definitely IS an intruder, whereas in the Ramsey case there is no sign of one. If there were a clear sign of an intruder in the Ramsey case then that would be the end of that and there would be no reason to suspect the Ramseys. If you want to draw a parallel, the Kercher case would be similar to the Ramsey case if it were determined that an intruder had been present and the prosecution was trying to claim that John and Patsy assisted that person in the assassination of their daughter. That's a scenario I would endorse ONLY if there were very clear and compelling evidence linking the Ramseys with the intruder and with the crime.

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  14. Doc, if Knox and Sollecito didn’t participate then who helped Guede because the evidence indicates multiple attackers? They were the only two questioned who lied about their alibi’s. And, she probably didn’t realize her “confession” also implicated her since she was just an innocent by-stander. And, in her “imaginings” she imagined a scream, and how would she know this? The scream wasn’t known until corroborated by three neighbors. Doc, she has a lot to explain and she hasn’t done it yet. She could go over there and testify in her appeal to the Supreme Court. Also, you are misreading the Cassation summary. The questioning about the luminol evidence were arguments by the defense. The Cassation court totally discounted this line of argument because the defense couldn’t present a plausible scenario where Knox’s feet would be immersed in the victim’s blood to make tracks in the hallway. Please spend some time trying to understand this case. It will change your mind.

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    1. OK, first of all, even if there were multiple attackers that does not mean they have to have been AK and RS. Guede could have had an accomplice. However before getting to that point we really need clear evidence of multiple attackers. What the autopsy showed, apparently, was that the attack was consistent with multiple attackers, but that doesn't mean it had to have happened that way. The lack of defensive wounds can be explained in other ways, for example, she might have been knocked unconscious by Guede, who then held her upright while he stabbed her. Or he might have held her hands together while he stabbed her. As for the evidence that she was attacked from two sides, it's hard for me to picture how the coroner could determine that the attacks had to have taken place simultaneously.

      And clearly they are not the only ones who lied (assuming they actually did lie), because Guede also changed his story. As for Knox's story about being on the scene while Lumumba stabbed MK, I find it impossible to see this story as something that would make things better for her. She places herself at the murder scene, what sort of lie is that? As for the scream, it's not difficult to assume there would have been a scream if someone were being attacked with a knife. If there had been no scream does that mean you'd be defending her now?

      As far as Knox's feet immersed in blood, I'm totally puzzled by that accusation. It's known that Guede's bloody footprints were in the hall. Knox claimed she entered the building later that morning so naturally she would have stepped in the bloody footprints. She said she noticed some blood but assumed it was menstrual blood or that someone had cut herself. So how is that evidence she murdered MK?

      As for spending more time on the case that's what I'm hoping to avoid, thank you. For me this is very different from the Ramsey case. There are a great many people better informed than I who are advocating very effectively for Amanda and Raffaele, so my participation, thank God, is not needed. In the Ramsey case I felt for a long time that I was the only one who had a handle on it, so felt obligated to learn as much as possible and share my thinking. That's not how I feel about the Kercher case.

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  15. At the risk of contributing to the "morass" -

    Another similarity between the two cases is that what seems probable/improbable to one person is just the opposite for another.

    For example, in the JBR case, many believe PR's wearing the same clothes is "obvious" evidence that PR was up all night killing and/or staging. Others (myself included) tend to think it's just the opposite, that she'd surely have changed her clothes if she'd committed the crime, thus the same clothes indicate a complete lack of trying to cover up anything.

    In the Kercher case, some think the break in was staged while others (myself included) think it most likely was real.

    Why would AK/RS stage a break in through Filomena's window? As some have pointed out, the window is 12' from the ground, a fact well known to AK. RG had visited the house before, visiting the boys who lived on the lower level of the house, so if AK (and/or RS, and/or RG) were to stage a break in, why not through the easily accessed doors/windows? They all knew where the easier access points were yet they (whichever combination one thinks did the staging) chose the more remote location, thinking this was convincing?

    Why is the glass "spray" pattern out in front of the window, and the glass nearly reaches the opposite side of the room if it were broken from inside? The windows (as in the Ramsey case) swing inward into the house. This means that if fully opened, the winow frames/panes would be at right angles to the window opening. Breaking glass with the windows open would result in glass "sprayed" crosswise, in front of the window. What we actually have is glass being "sprayed" directly in line with the window, nearly reaching the night stand beside Filomena's bed. How could this happen from an inside break?

    As demonstrated in the videos, it's rather easy for a young athletic made to get into the window. It's an odd choice, but then it's an odd choice for staging too.

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  16. You need to learn more about the case before you post about specific aspects of the case like the staged break-in. It is obvious you pulled this from some site presenting bogus information. First, most of the window glass was contained between the window and the shutter on the outside ledge. Indicating the window had been broken from the inside. Second, Filomena testified that the shutters were swollen shut from the rain the day before and she had pulled them shut up to the edge of the ledge but not latched them. The window was also shut. So, in order for someone to throw a rock through the window, someone would have to scale the wall, open the shutter, throw the rock, and then climb back up the wall and through the window and do so without disturbing the glass on the ledge. (Doc you yourself said this is implausible in the Ramsey case.) Third, Guede’s DNA, palm print, and shoe print were left in the apartment but no trace of Guede DNA was found in Filomena’s room (only victim’s blood mixed with Knox DNA). Also, why would Guede go to the trouble of staging a break-in but leave his feces in the toilet (with all kinds of DNA present)? Fourth, the 9 pound rock supposedly was thrown from 10 ft below and made no impact markings on the floor and ended up half in a paper bag. Fifth, many shards of glass were on top of items that had been strewn around the room indicating the window was broken last. Sixth, Filomena’s room is right beside the front entrance not in the remote part of the house. Why would anyone break in to that window 10 ft off the ground when they could go around and easily access the balcony from the rear like previous break-ins to the cottage? No one would risk being seen by breaking in the front side of the cottage where they could easily be seen from the road. Seven, it is inconceivable that Meredith who was fully dressed at the time of the alleged break-in would sit there and do nothing while all these operations were going on. Eight, the defense legal team even gave up on this loan wolf scenario when the court visited the cottage and seeing all the evidence and one of the defense attorneys Delfo Berritti who is at least six feet five inches tall tried to scale the wall but gave up and determined it virtually impossible.

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    1. http://www.injusticeinperugia.org/RonHendry------2.html

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    2. This reconstruction looks pretty convincing to me. Much moreso than Lou Smit's efforts to reconstruct an intruder breakin in the Ramsey basement, that's for sure.

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    3. I'm wondering also if Guede could simply have tied the rock to a cord around his neck. That way he could have tossed the stone at close range and then entered immediately without having to do it in stages.

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    4. Doc, I have a lot of respect for you, but if Guede had had the wherewithal and foresight to plan to tie a rock around his neck to facilitate his wall-climbing to gain entrance through a window that was completely visible from a busy road, he would have simply gained access through the well-hidden balcony. He'd been to the cottage several times before the murder, and was also no stranger to burglary and its methods.

      I don't think it's plausible that he scaled the wall with a rock tied around his neck.

      I know you don't want to continue with this discussion, but have you read Knox's account of the evening written in an email to her family and friends? I know you don't put much stock in statement analysis, but I find her email...which was written at her leisure and with no one harassing her...along with her written statement made at the police station, to be very damning. She made statements that I believe indicate guilt...over something! As I have written before, I think she knows more than she is telling.

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  17. Sorry "lone wolf"

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  18. Doc, the defense argued that Knox could have caused the foot prints any time. And, that is true. But, they can’t just argue “anything is possible.” They never once in any of the testimony or from the cottage mates’ testimony introduced another time when Knox could have been walking around in the victim’s blood. And, then there was the problem of Sollecito’s footprint. There was no plausible explanation for that. Knox’s DNA was pulled from several of the footprint samples. Her footprint and DNA was also in Filomena’s room mixed with the victim’s blood. Doc, you argued in the Ramsey case that anything is possible and several scenarios could be derived from a piece of evidence but the court will go with the most plausible unless a competing plausible scenario could be presented. That is why the court disregarded the defense’s claim.

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  19. Doc, Guede could have had an accomplice. But what is plausible. Not other DNA or prints were found in the apartment except Sollecito, Knox and Guede. Who is this other phantom accomplice? All other individuals questioned by the police had rock solid alibi's. A professor from Sweden even returned to Perugia to corroborate Lumumba's alibi. Doc, Occam's razor is the most likely explanation. That the only two individuals who lied about their alibi's, who left evidence all over the place, placed herself at the scene of the crime, falsely accused an innocent man, lied about and falsely accused the police, and whose stories were contrary to numerous witness accounts were probably the ones who perpetrated the crime.

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    1. I appreciate your efforts to enlighten me regarding this case, however the arguments you've presented are already familiar to me. As far as the window is concerned, there does exist a website with an interview from someone with professional credentials on the forensics of glass and window evidence, and that person made it clear he sees the patterns of glass breakage in that room as consistent with a breakin from outside. I'm sorry I can't find that for you now but you probably know about it already, and can also, I feel sure, refute it on the basis of some other expert's opinion. And so it goes and will go on forever no doubt.

      I can assure you that AK's defenders have an answer for every one of your arguments. They are more knowledgable than I so I'll direct you to their websites rather than try to offer a point by point refutation.

      Oddly, the arguments for AK's guilt in this case remind me not of the arguments for Ramsey guilt, but the arguments for Ramsey innocence. If you're curious as to why, check my latest blog post which I'll be presenting shortly.

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    2. I've been to the websites of many of her defenders like I visited this site about Jon Benet. Your arguments and logic in the Ramsey case are unparalleled. I know the truth when I see it. I have argued with many about the merits of this case and believe me I was an early defender of Amanda Knox until I started seeing the reports from the courts, reviewing the photographs and statements, and transcripts of the trials and then I started having a cold chill run down my spine that when I looked into the eyes of Knox I was looking into the eyes of a cold-blooded killer. No one has been able to withstand a debate with me because the truth and the facts always win.

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  20. ... "Why would anyone break in to that window 10 ft off the ground when they could go around and easily access the balcony from the rear like previous break-ins to the cottage? " ...

    Why would anyone stage it that way?

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    1. I believe the staging at that particular window shows that AK and RS (or whomever...) were inexperienced in the ways of burglary and were possibly high on something and not thinking too clearly.

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    2. But of course Guede could not have been high? If you check out the video he made of himself and placed on youtube, you can see just how stoned he could get. And you can also learn quite a bit about his fantasy life, where he describes himself at one point as a vampire wanting to drink someone's blood. Talk about statement analysis!

      He may well have been motivated by more than just robbery or even rape. His choice of a more challenging entry point could reflect the same sort of fantasies as expressed in his video.

      I've now seen many photos of the room where the breakin occurred, along with what seems to be a pretty thorough and convincing explanation of what most likely happened. Looks like a real breakin to me. VERY hard to see how anyone would have or could have staged it to look the way it looks in those photos.

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  21. Doc,
    All you have to do is take a look at the police photographs of the break-in and review the testimony of Filomena and you will immediately understand that the glass was broken from the inside. No experts needed. Why so quick to give Amanda Knox a pass? Is it because she is a pretty white female? Is it inconceivable to you that she could commit so heinous of a crime? That no motive can be determined. My reply is all of that is irrelevant. Meredith Kercher deserves that everyone put away their preconceived notions and review the evidence of the case.

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  22. All you have to do is look at the police photographs of the break-in and you will immediately understand that the glass was broken from outside.

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  23. Rudy broke into a law office on Oct 13, by throwing a rock through the window and climbing a grill to enter through the window.

    Rudy broke into a home where he threatened the home owner with a knife.

    Rudy broke into a nursery school and was found to be carrying a large kitchen knife.

    I'm not having much trouble believing Rudy broke into Filomena's room by throwing a rock through the window and climbing the grate to boost himself up.

    Combined with where the glass was found (out, in front of the window, almost to the other side of the room) it's quite obvious the break-in was real.

    CH

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    1. You know, this case really sickens me. Here is a page with links to five reports on the case by a veteran FBI detective: http://www.injusticeinperugia.org/FBI6.html

      The specific report on this particular page regards the luminol "evidence" and systematically debunks the prosecution's case regarding Amanda's "bloody footprints" found in the hall. Read it carefully if you're convinced Amanda killed Meredith, because it makes a mockery of just about all the incriminating blood "evidence."

      Here is another report, debunking the prosecution finding that the window breakin was staged: http://www.injusticeinperugia.org/RonHendry2-----a.html

      Check out the many photos illustrating the patterns of glass distribution in that room. Consider also that pieces of glass were found BOTH on top of AND underneath items strewn on the floor. How could glass get on top of some of these items? Probably because that's where they were lying when the breakin occurred. Looks like a pretty messy room to me. However, what about the glass found UNDER some of these things? If the glass was broken after the murder, then all of it would have been on top of everything. The only way any glass could have gotten underneath anything was if there actually had been a breakin and some items had been tossed on the floor by the intruder.

      To claim that Rudy would have chosen an easier entry point for his breakin is no help because obviously someone staging a breakin would also have selected an easier entry point. Judging from his scary video, Rudy saw himself as some sort of Dracula, thus capable of literally flying into an open window, why not? So this breakin for him was probably the closest he could come to flying -- in his stoned out fantasy.

      Also I'm amazed at a theory that implies AK and RS were cleaning up the crime scene at NOON the following day. Why would they have wanted to wait so long?

      In any case, it seems clear to me that the window breakin actually happened and was NOT staged. Unlike the Lou Smit Show, this report is thorough, thoroughly documented and thoroughly believable. Which tells us that Rudy was not let into the house by Amanda or anyone else. He broke in, killed the only person in the house at the time and left. And if there are convincing signs the body was moved later, then the most logical explanation for that is Rudy returning to the scene of the murder. Nothing new in the annals of crime.

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  24. The footprint "evidence" rises to the level of fraud, not merely incompetence.

    CH

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  25. http://www.injusticeinperugia.org/independentexperts.html

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  26. Just found your blog Doc. Good stuff. Clear headed.

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  27. Not sure if anyone will read this, but I just finished reviewing this case and watched the new documentary on Netflix.

    I 100% agree with Doc on this one.

    This was one person (Rudy Guede). Its actually quite a simplistic case but was made to look complicated because the police were so sure Knox was involved and then the media has a field day. I really feel for AK and RS.

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