The family of Meredith Kercher, who was murdered by Rudy Guede when he was interrupted during a break-in at her flat on the via della Pergola in Perugia, Italy, has conducted a long-term campaign to obtain the conviction of her flat-mate Amanda Knox. According to the peculiarities of the Italian judicial system, they were able to conduct a civil trial for the wrongful death of their daughter alongside the criminal trial of Amanda Knox and her some-time boyfriend Raffaele Sollecito. Their lawyer in the civil case, Francesco Maresca, whom I would categorize as scum not even worth scraping off of an Umbrian sidewalk in August with a Discovery card, successfully argued that an obvious semen stain on a pillow at the crime scene should not be tested.
Although in Italy victim’s families have the right to conduct a civil trial in parallel with the criminal trial, such behavior represents prosecutorial misconduct no matter what the circumstances. Additionally, since by the vagaries of the Italian judicial system, the two occur at the same time, the judges hear evidence that is inadmissable in court, like illegally obtained (not taped) interrogations, as they naturally hear it when presented for the civil trial.
The fact is that as I have pointed out before in my prior post “Why it isn’t physically possible for Amanda Knox to have committed murder,” as you might guess from the title, there is not only evidence she didn’t do it, the physical evidence shows she couldn’t have done it. Furthermore, (see “Let’s see if she floats”) blood and DNA of the real killer, Rudy Guede, are all over the crime scene, while the DNA of AK is nowhere to be found. This led some of the judges to speculate that she selectively cleaned up after herself (you can’t see DNA, Sherlock, so how can you selectively clean it up, duh). As for the so-called memoriale, you can read about it in my post on false confessions.
All of the so-called “facts” that have come up, e.g. most recently that she lied about leaving the apartment of her boyfriend the night of the murder since her cell phone pinged an outside tower (the truth is that the tower covered his apartment, so she didn’t lie) have subsequently been proven false. Finally, it is basically unheard of for a woman with no criminal record or history of mental illness to team up with a boyfriend of two weeks and a homeless criminal she had met once and rape and kill her roommate.
In other words, it is not possible for any rational person to conclude that there is any possibility she is guilty. The conclusion of guilt requires a combination of a lack of scientific knowledge, a capacity for judgment based on things like “gut instinct,” and a tendency to confirmation bias (selecting things that fit your prejudice and excluding others).
That is what makes the pursual of Amanda Knox by the Kercher family so perverse. Their lawyer Maresca urged them to conduct a 20 million euro lawsuit against Knox and they eventually won a 4.4 million euro judgment. After the aquittal of Amanda Knox one of the family members said “this is not the outcome we were looking for.” Another family member sent a letter to the court in Perugia asking that an analysis of the DNA evidence by an independent panel of experts from La Sapienza University in Rome be supressed, which would have undermined the use of science in support of justice, the rights of the defendants and due process. In his book, Meredith John Kercher Sr described the anti-Knox hate web site “True Justice for Meredith Kercher” as reasonable and unbiased and frequented by “a number of Italian and American lawyers.” (so far only one British law clerk has been identified as writing on the site). He further outlines a number of media lies about the case as “facts,” like that there was evidence of the use of bleach in clean-up attempt (there wasn’t), there was the bloody footprint of Amanda at the scene (police confessed in court they lied about that), there was the blood of Amanda on the handle and of Meredith on the blade of a knife (proven false). He further outlines conflicting scenarios about the crime, one in which the three young people converge in a cafe to plot the crime, and later another where there is a spontaneous eruption of violence over a dispute. He also said it was “despicable that Amanda Knox became a celebrity” as the result of his daughter’s murder and that “my family believes unequivocably that she is guilty.” How can it be despicable to become famous for being associated with a murder you didn’t commit? Isn’t it in fact despicable to pursue an innocent person just to make yourself feel better? What about justice?
Kercher’s willing disregard for facts can perhaps be traced to his career as a tabloid journalist in Britain. After it was discovered that the cell phone of a girl who was kidnapped and murdered was hacked into by a journalist — probably after she was already dead — lead to the opening of a can of worms showing an industry-wide use of the practice, followed by the collapse of the rag paper News of the World and jail time for editor Andy Coulson and others. Kercher worked at the Daily Mirror under Editor Piers Morgan, who also has had questions raised about his involvement in phone hacking.
Not surprisingly, Morgan said that he thought Amanda Knox was probably guilty, more or less because Kercher was his friend and former colleague. Another example of the damage done by a sloppy English press that has lost its moral compass and is no longer directed by journalistic ethics but rather bottom feeding and surface judgments.
The actions of the Kercher family have fueled hatred on the internet. It has been pointed out that the Kercher family is long suffering and thay have said that they want closure, but how is pursuing the conviction of an innocent person going to achieve closure or relieve suffering? Their lack of closure is caused by their continuing delusion that anyone else was involved in the murder of their daughter beside Rudy Guede, who was convicted and is now in jail. Being victimized does not justify short circuiting justice or blaming people that were not involved.