There seemed to be an endless chain of headlines, like new pieces of candy to wave in front of people. New evidence! Amanda said this! As soon as the police fed them a new tidbit of unfounded news, the earlier headline would be replaced.
The media seemed less interested in investigating the claims than in just hanging them out there.
And the tabloid sensationalism of one country was recycled to become legitimate news in another.
Amanda Knox, Waiting to Be Heard: A Memoir (pp. 200-201)
From the very beginning, the media was used by the prosecution to build the case against Amanda Knox and Raffaele Sollecito. This is a list of some of the lies, distortions, half-truths, false evidence, innuendo and smears that were told by the police, prosecution and press. The sheer quantity of lies leaked created a prejudicial atmosphere at the first trial with unsequestered jurors free to read the papers and watch the TV coverage and then talk with friends and family about the case. In a stunning admission after the Florence trial conviction, Judge Alessandro Nencini revealed in an interview with Il Messaggero that jurors were coming to him saying they were confused, and what they were hearing on TV about the case was different to what they were hearing in the courtroom.
The Pre-Trial Lies
Lie: Amanda called Rudy Guede
Investigators say Mr Guede left Perugia on the morning after the murder and went to Milan, where he was stopped by police but not detained. Detectives locked on to his mobile phone signal in Milan as recently as this weekend, but it then went dead. Amanda Knox made at least two calls to his number, one of them at 11am on 2 November, around the time police discovered Kercher’s body.
The truth: Amanda never called Rudy Guede. She didn’t even know his name or phone number.
QUESTION – Refer to everything that has been reported in the record.
ANSWER – Yes, I’ve already told you, literally. The record is dated 6 November at 20.00. I made it in the evening because then not having slept in two days, in the morning when I finished I went to bed. Morning and afternoon. The first part I have already referred to it, and it gives me an indication of these guys, not Italian, a certain PJ Peter Svizzero, who would have been several times in their home and who lived near the area of Via della Pergola 7. P atrick, the owner of the local
Le Chique where he was working. I have said it provides cell phone utilization. Then it speaks of a certain Ardak north African citizen and gives me the mobile phone utilization. A certain Juve, Algerian national, who works occasionally at the local Le Chique and who lives in the vicinity of the house of another friend of the victim, Sophie. Also this gives me the mobile phone use. Then Spiros, a boy of Greek nationality that only gives me mobile phone use. Shaky, a Moroccan citizen who works in a pizzeria frequented the pub frequented by all the girls in the group of the victim and still also a friend Sofie. And it also refers to a South African boy of color, short (?) (“basso”), who played basketball at the court in Piazza Grimana, who on one occasion visited the house of the boys who lived in the apartment below.
QUESTION – South African was that term correct?
ANSWER – No, no, in fact I wanted to clarify that regarding the particulars of this boy, she didn’t remember him, at least had not told me about him, so I told her if it came to mind about a boy who had been in the home of neighbors, students who lived there, because we had learned from those other guys who had had a meeting one evening they had a little party at home and they had, where he was also in that circumstance was also Amanda and Meredith, and there she said, “Yes, it is true , I remember this guy but I can not say either his name nor provide his phone number because I have not seen him again. I can not say anything other.” This is what I said then was…
Lie: Amanda was caught on camera going to the cottage
Murder suspect Amanda Knox was caught on camera entering the apartment where a British student was murdered the same night, it emerged today. The CCTV footage contradicts Knox’s claim that she was at the house of her 24-year-old boyfriend, Raffaele Sollecito.
The truth: It was Meredith on the CCTV not Amanda.
Lie: Amanda’s print was on Meredith’s face
A fingerprint found on the British student murdered in Italy shows her American housemate held her down as she was attacked, it was alleged. The arrest warrant for Amanda Knox, 20, discloses that her print was discovered on the face of Meredith Kercher, who was found in her bed with her throat cut, a respected Italian newspaper claims.
Forensic experts found Knox’s hand imprint on Meredith’s face.
The truth: It wasn’t.
Lie: Amanda brought strange men home to the cottage
PERUGIA – “I want to tell you some of the things Meredith said to me about Amanda. I think they’re important. Meredith told me Amanda would sometimes bring men back to their house. I don’t know how many there were. Meredith mentioned one man in particular who lives at an Internet Café. That’s where she said she met him. Meredith thought the man was strange. At the time, she didn’t give me any more details. I don’t know how old he is but I can say that at least one other man was taken back to their house, although I don’t know what nationality these people are”. It was 11.10 pm on 3 November. Sophie Purton, 20, a friend of the British woman murdered on the evening of 1 November, was being questioned at Perugia police station. She was the first to reveal that the murder house has always had plenty of visitors. Police officers then decided to interview Amanda Knox, the American student now accused of taking part in the murder.
MEN, MEN, MEN – Ms Knox was questioned at 2.45 pm on 4 November. She did not deny that there were visitors. “The Internet Café man is Argentinian and his name is Juve. He’s been to our house at least five times. The last time was on 31 October. He knew Meredith because he met her at the bar with me. Juve never tried to hit on me. He’s got this habit of hugging and touching even when he’s not drunk. The other men I brought back are one called Spyros, only once in October when he met Meredith; Daniele from Rome – I don’t know his phone number – who came twice.
Lie: Amanda’s bloody fingerprint was found on a tap in the bathroom
Investigator Giuliano Mignini claimed a bloody fingerprint belonging to Amanda Knox had been found on a bathroom tap.
The truth: No such fingerprint was found.
Lie: Harry Potter book falsified Amanda’s alibi
Originally published in La Stampa on December 18, 2007, this story was picked up and reported by the European media, the Times of London and Dan Abrams on ABC.
PERUGIA, Italy — The placement of a Harry Potter novel has revealed yet another gap in the claims of the American student suspected in the murder of her British roommate.
According to a report by the Times of London, University of Washington student Amanda Knox told investigators that on the night of Meredith Kercher’s murder, she was at her Italian boyfriend’s flat where they read several pages of a Harry Potter novel “in the German edition.”
However, investigators said the novel was not found at Raffaele Sollecito’s flat but instead at the cottage Knox shared with Kercher.
The truth: Amanda had two copies. One was at the cottage and the other at Raffaele’s on the bedside table. The Harry Potter book was never mentioned at trial.
Lie: Amanda said Raffaele might have killed Meredith
She is reported to have written: “I think it is possible Raffaele went to Meredith’s house, raped her, then killed her and then when he got home, while I was sleeping, he pressed my fingerprints on the knife.”
The knife, which was found in Sollecito’s apartment, is considered the likely murder weapon, according to detectives working on the case. “That night I smoked a lot of cannabis and I fell asleep at my boyfriend’s house … I don’t remember anything. But I think it’s possible that Raffaele went to Meredith’s house, raped her, then killed her, and then when he got home, while I was sleeping, he pressed my fingerprints on the knife,” writes Knox. “But I don’t know why Raffaele would do that.”
And another article, this time the Daily Mail with the same made up quote:
The truth: She stressed that she didn’t believe it and was being sarcastic.
What Amanda really said:
Raffaele and I have used this knife to cook, and it’s impossible that Meredith’s DNA is on the knife because she’s never been to Raffaele’s apartment before. So unless Raffaele decided to get up after I fell asleep, grabbed said knife, went over to my house, used it to kill Meredith, came home, cleaned the blood off, rubbed my fingerprints all over it, put it away, then tucked himself back into bed, and then pretended really well the next couple of days, well, I just highly doubt all of that.
Prison Diary – (English & Italian)
Lie: Amanda met a secret Argentinian boyfriend and went to the laundromat to wash a pile of clothes, including a pair of blue Nike sneakers
The truth: A witness called Alice Puleo reported to police seeing a male and female in a laundromat called “Laundry 67” on November 2. Neither the male or female were identified as Amanda Knox, Raffaele Sollecito or Rudy Guede. Nonetheless it was leaked to the media that it was Amanda and a secret lover. Honor Bound, Kindle Loc 1276. Source: Witness Deposition Alice Puleo November 3, 2007
Lie: Amanda wrote stories about rape
Lie: Amanda cultivated cannabis plants around the apartment
Knox also cultivated cannabis plants around the apartment and would smoke her first joint before she got dressed in the morning.
The truth: The cannabis plants were grown by Meredith’s boyfriend who asked her to water them while he was away.
Lie: The bathroom sink and walls were covered in blood
In chilling new photographs released by Italian police today, the full scale of the horror that confronted police when they entered the apartment in Perugia becomes clear. The images also show the apartment’s bathroom sink and walls smeared with blood.
The truth: The photo in the Daily Mail shows the bathroom after a chemical had been applied to look for traces of blood. The actual amount of blood was tiny.
Lie: Patrick Lumumba fired Amanda for “hitting on customers”
The truth: Lumumba never fired Amanda. His text to Amanda the night of the murder said she wasn’t needed at work because it was a slow night. Lumumba testified they had a good relationship.
Lumumba Testimony p154-155
Question: LIsten, how was your relationship with Amanda?
Answer: My relationship, from my point of view was good.
Question: Was it always like that?
Answer: Our personal or work relationship?
Answer: As a person, honestly, from what I know, we always had a good relationship, but with her as an employee, with her way of working, I had to repeat her tasks to her several times.
Question: Did you have some … Did you have to tell her off on occasion? Did you have some… Did you ever argue?
Answer: No no no no.
Question: Did you ever have to raise your voice, for example?
Answer: No no no never, no no never, because even when these types of things happened, after the customers left and she had neglected to clear a table, what did I do… it’s something that you musn’t do, I said this like for all staff. I spoke to all employees together to tell them: you have to be careful, when the customers leave, you have to clear up. But saying it directly to her, like that, never.
Question: And Amanda’s relationship with Meredith, how was it?
Question: Do you know or?
Answer: No no
Question: You don’t know.
Answer: I don’t know, I knew they were friends, friends and that’s it.
Post Acquittal Lies
Even after the acquittal in 2011, the lies and misinformation kept on coming. Here’s Barbie Latza Nadeau as confused as ever and mixing up testimony.
Lie: Giulia Bongiorno said a cat may have turned on Raffaele’s phone
This question was never addressed fully in the appellate process except when Giulia Bongiorno for Sollecito said that perhaps the cat stepped on the phone and turned it on. At that time the prosecutor Manuela Comodi quipped, “I’ve got a dog and he has never done that.”
The Truth: Raffaele didn’t own a cat and Giulia Bongiorno nor anyone else ever said anything about a cat turning on a cell phone. The testimony was about things that interfere with cell phone reception such as motor cars, walking room to room, if a window is open or closed and even a cat in the window can effect the signal. The cat only came up because there happened to be a cat in the window at Raffaele’s apartment when Bruno Pellero (defense telecommunications expert) did a site inspection and took a photo of it. The photo on the right comes from Bruno Pellero’s report on page 91. The testimony about the cat and cell phone reception is on pages 55-56 of the July 17 transcript.
Lie: Amanda used hard drugs and called a cocaine dealer before and after the murder
The truth: No witness testified seeing Amanda use hard drugs, talk about using hard drugs in the past or say she wanted to experiment with hard drugs in the future. There’s no mention of it anywhere in the transcripts or motivation reports nor has anyone come forward saying Amanda bought drugs from them or used hard drugs with them.
Amanda Knox Phone Records show no calls to anyone before and after the murder. The order for the tapping of “Federico’s” phone show the number to be: 389-9647716. This number is not in the phone records either.
Post Florence Trial Conviction Smear Campaign
The re-conviction of Amanda and Raffaele in 2014 saw the arrival of UK blogger Selene Nelson who was determined to continue the witch hunt. Selene Nelson wrote a number of highly inaccurate and defamatory articles always alluding to a massive PR conspiracy in United States. Nelson fancied herself as an expert on the case after reading the fake wiki website which she linked to repeatedly in her articles as proof of guilt. Supporters labelled her a gullible misguided dupe. Here’s a few examples:
Lie: Seattle publicist responsible for Guede being labeled a drifter by the words media.
Unfortunately for Knox, Guede is not an orphan. His parents are divorced, just like hers are. Guede too had no criminal record or history of violence. There is not a single piece of evidence to suggest that he was a drug dealer, and not a single witness who has come forward to substantiate this. This “drifter” (a term coined by Gogerty Marriott) had lived in Perugia since the age of five and had his own apartment.
The truth: As we show on the frequently asked questions page, it was the judges who convicted Rudy Guede who called him a drifter. The media merely described him as they did.
Lie: The cat turned on the cell phone (again) and suspicious computer use.
Why did Knox and Sollecito insist that they slept soundly through the night of the murder until 10 a.m. when there is undisputed human interaction on Sollecito’s computer at 5:30 a.m., where someone listened to music for around 30 minutes? How could they be asleep if Sollecito’s phone was turned on at 6:02 a.m.? (Sollecito’s lawyer tried to blame his cat for switching on the phone.)
The truth: Nelson repeats the “Sollecito defense said the cat turned on the cell phone” myth started by Barbie Nadeau and questions the phone being turned on and computer use on the morning of November 1. Amanda Knox testified for 8 hours at the first trial and wasn’t asked a single question by the prosecution about the music played or the cell phone being turned on. Clearly it didn’t mean anything to the prosecution’s case.
There’s dozens and dozens of these. We’ll post a few examples from the various books.
John Kercher – Meredith: Our daughter’s murder and the heartbreaking quest for the truth [Kindle Edition]
Lie/Myth: Caught outside the cottage with a mop and bucket
When Battistelli and Marzi arrived at the cottage, they found Amanda Knox and her Italian boyfriend, Raffaele Sollecito, standing outside with a mop and bucket.
Kercher, John (2012-04-26). Meredith: Our daughter’s murder and the heartbreaking quest for the truth (p. 84). Hodder & Stoughton. Kindle Edition.
The truth: Amanda and Raffaele weren’t outside the cottage with a mop and bucket. This myth comes from Peter Quennell’s conspiracy theory blog. Nina Burleigh wrote about the mop and bucket myth in the following article:
After a month in Italy doing reporting, however, I realized that some of the “facts” on Quennell’s website didn’t seem to be in the police record in Italy. I emailed him to ask where he had found out that Knox and Sollecito met police standing outside the murder house with a mop and bucket in hand. That damning incident was nowhere in the record, not even the prosecutor would confirm it, nor had Italy’s Polizia Scientifica ever tested such items, which would surely have offered up some useful DNA evidence, had they been used to clean blood.
Half Truth: Luca and Paola checked their car
It was later pointed out on the website, True Justice for Meredith Kercher, an unbiased and non-profit-making website, which originated in America and is contributed to by American and Italian lawyers, that after they had dropped Knox and Sollecito off at the police station, Luca and Paola were so concerned they ‘thoroughly checked the interior of their car for any incriminating evidence, as they were scared that something might have been planted there’.
Kercher, John (2012-04-26). Meredith: Our daughter’s murder and the heartbreaking quest for the truth (p. 89). Hodder & Stoughton. Kindle Edition.
The truth: Luca checked his car but only after Amanda Knox and Raffaele Sollecito had been arrested on November 6. Source: Filomena Romanelli Witness Deposition November 7, 2007
Lie: Meredith complained about Amanda
We knew that Meredith had not got on with Knox. Meredith had expressed irritation to both Arline and I and her friends in Perugia at Knox’s personal habits, because she frequently failed to flush the toilet and had concerns over how she would ‘bring strange men back to the house’,….
Kercher, John (2012-04-26). Meredith: Our daughter’s murder and the heartbreaking quest for the truth (p. 96). Hodder & Stoughton. Kindle Edition.
The Truth: John Kercher said the opposite in his statement to Guiliano Mignini on November 7, 2007
Mignini: Did you speak to your daughter often?
JK: We spoke every evening or at least every other day.
Mignini: Did your daughter ever speak of being concerned about something, of having unpleasant encounters?
JK: No, my daughter was always calm and cheerful and never told me of having a problem with anyone.
Barbie Nadeau – Angel Face: Sex, Murder and the Inside Story of Amanda Knox
We could fill pages detailing all the lies this reprehensible hack told but here’s a few examples:
Lie: There was multiple autopsies performed
Multiple autopsies would later fail to prove sexual assault, while at least one autopsy suggested that the sexual assault took place post-mortem.
Nadeau, Barbie Latza (2010-03-05). Angel Face: Sex, Murder and the Inside Story of Amanda Knox (pp. 47-48). Beast Books. Kindle Edition.
The Truth: There was multiple expert reports but only one autopsy performed by Dr Luca Lalli.
Lie: Police found bleach receipts
At the time, however, police made no connection between the evidence of a clean-up in the house and the mop propped against the front porch. Several days later, when Raffaele was arrested, police searched his apartment and found a receipt for Ace brand bleach , purchased the morning of November 4, 2007, at 8: 15.
Nadeau, Barbie Latza (2010-03-05). Angel Face: Sex, Murder and the Inside Story of Amanda Knox (p. 54). Beast Books. Kindle Edition.
The truth: There was no bleach receipt dated November 4, 2007. The only receipt for November 4 was for a pizza.
Lie: Amanda repeatedly called Filomena and Laura
In fact, she could not have left Perugia without raising an alarm. Detectives were watching her every move. Instead, Amanda repeatedly called Filomena and Laura to ask if they could live together again and to inquire after a refund for the rent and deposit she had paid.
Nadeau, Barbie Latza (2010-03-05). Angel Face: Sex, Murder and the Inside Story of Amanda Knox (p. 62). Beast Books. Kindle Edition.
The Truth: The phone records show 1 call for 25 seconds on November 3 and 1 call for 3 mins on November 5.