Even those who doubt Knox’s innocence can’t deny that she was unfairly villainized. The police and press stole and misinterpreted her journals, bugged her, twisted her words, and spread lies. (For example, it was reported that receipts proved she bought bleach after the murder, but the receipts were actually from before the crime, and were for pizza.)
But Knox made it easy on the corrupt police by making mistake after mistake. I imagine that while Amanda Knox wrote her book Waiting To Be Heard, she constantly smacked her forehead and said, “Why did I do that?! What was I thinking?!”
1. She didn’t hire a lawyer. The police told her that getting a lawyer would make it look like she was unwilling to cooperate. Hasn’t she seen Law And Order? And everyone deserves to be represented by someone who, oh, I don’t know, speaks the language that will be spoken during the trial. Knox’s Italian roommates got lawyers immediately, and they weren’t even being targeted or interrogated. She should have followed suit.
2. She didn’t cry. Initially Knox showed a lack of emotion, remaining oddly stoic and refusing hugs from Meredith Kercher’s friends. Unfortunately, we live in a world where people judge innocence based on a suspect’s emotions. And many were left wondering why Amanda wasn’t more upset.
3. Then she got angry. When Natalie, one of Kercher’s friends, said she hoped Kercher did not suffer, Knox snapped, “how could she not have suffered? They cut her f*cking throat! Bastards!” In this case, her emotions were not in line with everyone else’s, and people were shocked that she seemed to be lashing out at Kercher’s friends, the same people who would serve as witnesses for the prosecution.
4. She stayed in Perugia. Knox probably could have gone home immediately, but, thinking she could help the police, she stayed in Perugia. The whole time she thought she was assisting the case, well, she was—because she was incriminating herself with all the “help” she was giving.
5. She was weird. According to Knox, she got along well with Kercher. But she notes that when they lived together, she sang loudly (and that everyone thought she was crazy for it) and that once, Kercher had to remind her to brush the toilet after every use. Reading between the lines, that means Kercher might have thought Knox was pretty weird—annoying, even—and lacking in personal hygiene. When Kercher’s friends were put on the stand, they all said that Kercher thought Knox was unusual. They pointed to the toilet brush incident, suggesting the girls were at odds. What may very well have been regular roommate communication issues were interpreted as potential motives for murder.
6. She made bad jokes. In her journal, the one that was confiscated by the police without her knowledge, Knox joked, “I’d really like to say I could kill for a pizza but it doesn’t seem right.”
7. She acted like she was in a musical. The media reported that when brought back to the crime scene in her sanitized booties, Knox jumped out like a Broadway star and said, “ta-daa!” This seemed like more inappropriate behavior from someone whose roommate had just been murdered. Knox says she acted this way because she had just been reprimanded for complaining, and she wanted to appear cheerful.
8. She had a pink bunny vibrator. Before she for Perugia, one of Knox’s friends gave her a pink bunny vibrator to use “until she met her Italian Stallion.” Kercher’s friends claimed Kercher thought it was a tad uncouth that the bunny was on display in the bathroom. (Perhaps it was a British thing.) And prosecution claimed it indicated she was a loose woman. Knox says it was just a gag gift that she never used.
9. She bought red undies. Before she was detained, Knox and her boyfriend Raffaele Sollecito went to a cheap clothing store so she could buy clean underwear, since she was unable to go back to her villa to get her own clothes. It became public knowledge that she chose red. The store clerk reported that it was a “lacy G-string” (Amanda says it wasn’t) and said that after it was purchased, Sollecito said, “I’m going to take you home now so we can have wild sex.” Maybe that story would have been different if she had considered white or grey or nude. Maybe.
10. She implicated her boss. The worst thing Knox did was implicate her ex-boss Patrick Lumumba in the murder. (He had nothing to do with the crime and was cleared.) To be fair, she had been interrogated for hours, and under these conditions, people are known to lie if they think it will get them off the hook.
11. She never remained silent. She claims the police never read her her rights, so she didn’t know that she could just shut up. But instead she talked herself into a hole.
12. She didn’t call the American Embassy. Her aunt in Germany suggested it, but she didn’t think she was in a serious-enough situation to justify calling the embassy.
13. She skipped Kercher’s vigil. A few days after the murder there was a candlelight vigil in Kercher’s memory. Sollecito couldn’t go, and fearing her safety, Amanda didn’t want to go alone. So she skipped. And it just sort of looked bad. (Since she was already under suspicion, it also would have looked bad had she attended.)
14. There wasn’t enough variation in her everyday life. When the police asked Knox where she was, what she was doing, who she was with, etc., she couldn’t remember, because she and Sollecito “had done some variation of watching a movie, cooking, reading Harry Potter, having sex, and smoking every day for a week.” Since she couldn’t remember, her story (and her credibility) got muddled.
15. She thought the prosecutor (Pubblico Ministero) was the mayor. I’m shocked there wasn’t more lost in translation throughout all of this, but Knox, for a good portion of her questioning, thought that the prosecutor was actually on her side, or at least of an impartial party. Oops.
Have you read Knox’s memoir? What did you think of it?