The Strange Case of Amanda Knox

Is She an Innocent Abroad? A Victim of Circumstance?

Amanda Knox

Or a Young Woman with Murder in Her Heart?

Perugia is an ancient walled city in the Umbria region of Italy. Though its architecture and atmosphere speaks of times long past, the city virtually hums with youthful vitality thanks to the excellent universities that draw students from all over the world.

Charming Perugia

Charming Perugia

Amanda Knox, a student at the University of Washington had planned on a year of study abroad since she was a freshman. Her family was comfortable financially, but certainly not wealthy enough to bankroll such an endeavor so Amanda had worked hard to earn the money she’d need, sometimes holding down as many as three different jobs whilst attending a full schedule of classes and maintaining an A average. Friends sometimes described her as “spacey,” but Amanda was an excellent student. Her intention was to study Italian and creative writing at the L’Etranger Universidad, one of several universities in Perugia, this one, as the name suggests was specifically designed for the foreign student.

Soon after her arrival in Perugia in the fall of 2007, Amanda secured housing with three other female room mates in a charming cottage with a lovely view of the Umbrian hills. She also managed to secure a part time job working in a cafe owned by Patrick Lumumba. Industrious Amanda had saved approximately 4,000 USD, but knew she would have to supplement that with part time work.

house in Perugia

Perugia Cottage

Autumn in Perugia is an exciting time, with students filling the streets once more, and the advent of the annual chocolate festival. Perugia is world famous for the chocolate produced here and each October a festival is held to celebrate chocolate in all of it’s forms. Amanda and her new roommates, two Italian women, and an English girl from Leeds University named Margaret Kercher enjoyed the chocolate festival with the exuberance one would expect from vital young women, in the prime of their lives.

Meredith Kercher

Meredith Kercher

From all accounts Amanda dove headfirst into the busy social scene of Perugia. Her enthusiasm for the opposite sex had reportedly caused friction with her room mates, who were uneasy with the number of overnight guests Amanda had brought to their home in such a brief period of time. Soon though, Amanda appeared to have settled upon one young man in particular, Raffaelle Sollecito, a 21 year old engineering student, the son of a wealthy Italian doctor.

Amanda and Raffaele

Amanda Knox & Raffaele Sollecito

Halloween was happily celebrated by many students in Perugia, Amanda and Meredith included. Their two Italian roommates were absent from the cottage, visiting friends and family for the holiday. The following day was a quiet one for most of the party goers, quietly recovering from the festivities of the previous night, Amanda had gone to her boyfriend’s apartment and Meredith had spent a quiet night with a girlfriend before leaving early for home, planning on good nights sleep.

It is here that everything changes, it is here that an ordinary night, a quiet night, turns from the mundane to the horrific. A night that had begun unremarkably and notable only for its subdued nature in comparison to the frolicking of the day before, would end with the lifeblood of Meredith Kercher spilled, her throat slit and her body sexually violated.

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