Is Amanda Knox Guilty?

Amanda Knox was an American exchange student who lived in Italy with Meredith Kercher and was accused of her murder along with Raffaele Sollecito and Rudy Guede. Her guilt has been repeatedly doubted. Many think she was a naive girl that was the victim of a corrupt legal system and vicious media reports. Others believe she is a cold-blooded killer who feels no remorse over the murder of her friend. The truth may never be known, but what we do know, is that at least one person knows what happened on that night.

Originally, Knox was not a suspect. Knox and her Italian boyfriend at the time, Raffaele Sollecito, raised the alarm to police officers of an alleged break-in. They claimed to have spent the night at Sollecito's apartment and returned the following morning. They claimed they returned to signs of a break-in (smashed window), yet had not noticed any belongings to be missing. Knox was reportedly worried about her flatmate as her room was locked and she was not answering her phone. When police opened Kercher's door, they found her dead on the floor, surrounded by a substantial amount of blood and covered with a quilt. She was partially naked, her bra had been cut off, her top lifted above her breasts and she had two stab wounds in her neck. At closer inspection, police found signs that the break-in was staged. For example, broken glass was found on top of Kercher's clothes rather than underneath. Amanda Knox become the prime suspect.

Originally, Knox had claimed to have spent the night at her boyfriend's house. However, her story was changed. Police found a text from Knox's boss, Patrick Lumumba, telling her to not come into work tonight. Knox replied "see you later", which she claimed just meant in general "see you around". However, police wondered if there was an arrangement for the two to meet and take part in the murder of Meredith Kercher. During questioning, Knox claimed to have brought Lumumba back to her and Kercher's apartment that night and heard Kercher's screams. However, this was quickly refuted as DNA evidence proved that Rudy Guede was present in Kercher's room on the night of her death. Many believe Knox was guilty because of her change in stories. However, Knox claims that she changed her story because she was forced during questioning. She claims she was exhausted, distraught and confused, and police were telling her she was lying.

Another reason why Knox become a figure of hate in the media and a prime suspect was her behaviour following the death of her flatmate. She was seen embracing, comforting and kissing her boyfriend Sollecito. They had even been seen laughing in the days following the incident. Furthermore, Knox was seen on CCTV doing yoga and the splits in the waiting room whilst waiting to be questioned. Her behaviour may have been odd, but does that make her a murderer? Her family later claimed that she had not always been able to pick up on social cues. Could it be that Knox merely had trouble in distinguishing between appropriate and inappropriate behaviour in social situations (possibly Asperger's Syndrome, or something of the sort?), or was this the behaviour of a remorseless psychopath?

Guede had a past of break-ins, and was found to be possessing knives at the time of these break-ins. He had also fled the country a few days after the murder. There is significant evidence putting Guede at the scene of the crime, including his fingerprints and bloody footprints at the scene of the crime, and his DNA inside Kercher's body. He claims they took part in sexual activity, he then left her bedroom and went to the bathroom, he then allegedly heard Kercher's screams. He left the bathroom and a male figure charged at him with a knife. Guede claims he tried to stop Kercher's bleeding but couldn't, so he panicked and fled the scene. He originally claimed Knox and Sollecito were not at the apartment, yet later changed his statement and claimed that they were both present, and they were guilty of Kercher's murder. Guede claimed Kercher and Knox had been arguing earlier on and that Kercher had accused Knox of stealing money - a possible motive for the murder. There is significant evidence placing Guede in Kercher's bedroom that night, yet no evidence placing Knox there. However, a small amount of Knox's DNA was found on the presumed murder weapon. However, her defense claim the knife belonged in their apartment so it was normal for Knox's DNA to be there.

Guede, Knox and Sollecito were all charged of Meredith Kercher's murder. The court described it as a "sex game gone wrong". Nonetheless, there is no evidence of Knox or Sollecito engaging in sexual contact with Kercher and no evidence linking Guede with Knox and Sollecito. There are no calls, texts or witnesses suggesting that Guede even knew Knox or Sollecito. So why would they decide to murder an innocent girl together? It still appears that the court's conclusion has major holes. Their conclusion doesn't appear to add up. But who is guilty? Rudy Guede, Raffaele Sollecito or Amanda Knox?

Sadly, Meredith Kercher's name seems to be forgotten in this case. Her brutal murder is over-shadowed by the controversy of the trial. Many forget that an innocent girl lost her life and her family are still suffering without closure. Unfortunately, the truth about what happened on the night of November 1st 2007 may never be discovered.

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