The Amanda Knox Reality Show

Amanda Knox, moments before the verdict. Freeze Frame of APTN video shot by Nick Dumitrache.

Amanda Knox is now back at home in Seattle, APTN has pulled out its satellite truck, we’ve pulled the cables out of the courtroom, packed up our computers, and now I am back in Rome.

After spending six days in Perugia, I finally have a moment to write down some of my reflections on the last days of the appeals trial.

Some readers of this blog may be getting tired of the Knox story, so this will be the last post which will describe my personal experience covering the story, the background of the emotions, the media technicalities (how modern media techniques changed our coverage of this story), and some of the small details that didn’t make the headlines. I have given this post the title “Amanda Knox Reality Show” because, like many journalists who covered it, I believe it became just that, a show about Amanda Knox run in real-time on TV. Both her co-defendant Raffaele Sollecito, and the victim, Meredith Kercher, were nearly forgotten in all the attention on the young woman from Seattle.

The morning of the verdict the first AP television staffer was at the courthouse at 4:30 am to try to get us the best position in the courtroom when it opened at 8:45. He was 15th in line. NBC had sent their cameraman at midnight.

I bought the local papers and got an earful from the newstand owner across the street from the courthouse. He said he was making plenty of money from all us journalists buying 6 papers everyday but he didn’t want the business. He wanted the story done with. He wanted Amanda to go back to the States. I stopped a couple of people on the street to ask their opinion. One woman from Perugia named Angela Nardone got quite agitated and said ““We have had enough of it, we can’t take it anymore! I think both Amanda and Raffaele are guilty of murder.”

At nine Amanda’s mother, Edda Mellas, arrived. She was wearing a black dress and a Franciscan Tau Cross. Little aside here. I have video in my computer of Edda Mellas and her daughter Deanna in the courtroom on the day of the verdict in the first trial. They were smiling and snapping photos of each other as though they were in a museum in Italy, not a courtroom. This time Edda Mellas clearly knew what was at stake. Her somber dress said a lot. Interesting was also the Franciscan Tau Cross. St. Francis lived in Assisi, an Umbrian hill town not far from Perugia. He preached humility and simplicity. To me, Edda Mellas appeared on Monday to be a simple, humble mother desperate for her daughter’s release.

The trial was held in the Aula degli Affreschi, two floors below ground. On the back wall are two beautiful frescoes.

I joked with one producer that spending my days running up and down the three flights of steep stone stairs to get in and out of the courtoom beat any gym workout.

On Monday Amanda entered that courtroom, looking dreadful. She hung her head, her hair was straggly, her skin splotchy and a pale yellow. (Her parents told us she had not been eating or sleeping). She was wearing a baggy green shirt and a coat with a black hood.

The highlight of the morning session was when Amanda took the floor for the last time. Before she spoke, her co-defendant Raffaele Sollecito made a spontaneous statement. He was vague, wandering, and unclear. In the press room, journalists exchanged glances as he spoke, “what is wrong with him?” said someone. “Have they given him some medication to keep him calm?” said another. He did manage to make his key point though, saying “I have never harmed anyone, never in my life.”

Then it was Amanda’s turn. She stood up and delivered the most compelling, emotional speech of the trial. She was crying as she spoke, pausing to breath, grasping her hands in front of her. The entire press corps was riveted. She said in nearly perfect Italian, “I did not kill….I was not there….I want to go home, I want my life back. I don’t want to be punished and deprived of my life for something I did not do, because I am innocent.”

It was powerful stuff. I don’t know what the jury thought, but the press corps was blown away. “If she did kill Meredith, she sure is a damn good actress,” muttered a British journalist sitting near me.

Following Amanda’s spontaneous statement, the judge adjourned the trial, but before calling the jury to retire he made a warning to the court. He said: “this is not a soccer game, a terrible crime has occurred….now the lives of two young people hang in the balance….” and noted that when the verdict was announced, he did not want to see any “tifoseria” which means stadium fan behavior, in other words, no cheering for any side. Little did any of us know how well he had predicted what would happen outside the courtroom.

The jury then retired for deliberations. We were told that no verdict was likely before eight o’clock at night. We edited and wrote our morning stories, and a camera crew went to the prison. We got a tip the Kercher family had arrived to hear the verdict and would be giving a press conference. A crew rushed off to cover their arrival at the airport and do the press conference live.

I grabbed a quick salad with my colleague Paolo Santalucia who was coordinating the AP Television coverage. We sat in an outdoor cafe’ next to the tribunal. Behind us were dozens of satellite trucks lined up, their big round dishes pointed at the sky like the faces of sunbathers on a beach. The cafe’ was packed with agitated journalists on computers, cell phones and blackberrys, on the far side was a forest of camera tripods and light stands for the TV live positions.

After lunch there was a moment of calm. I called some friends who live in Perugia, Nicola and Francesca and they invited me to get a gelato with them. They treated me to a cone of stracciatella and caffe’ gelato and we wandered through the center of Perugia. The day was spectacular, cool and sunny and the historic center of Perugia with its churches, fountains and cobblestone streets is lovely, but the adrenalin was coursing through my system, and I could not remain calm. As we went to get the gelato I saw the two prosecutor’s (Mignini and Comodi) enjoying lunch at an outdoor restaurant together with the Kercher’s lawyer (Maresca). I had to stop to message Paolo to send over a camera crew to film them. “Need some shots to show how the prosecution is waiting for the verdict.” I walked on with my friends and my melting gelato. I saw a group of colleagues sitting at an outdoor restaurant. My friend, John Follain, the author of forthcoming book “Death in Perugia”, called me over to the table. He wanted to know what rumors I was hearing about Amanda’s departure if she were to be released. There were rumors of an American billionaire sending his private jet to the small Perugia airport, could it be Donald Trump?

I walked on with my friends and my ice cream. Then I got a call from an assistant to an Italian member of Parliament, Rocco Girlanda. Girlanda had just visited Amanda in prison. He was helping to make plans for her departure. He would give me an interview. With that, I left my friends, slurped down the ice cream and dashed out of town with a cameraman towards the Capanne prison where Amanda was waiting to hear her fate.

We did the interview by the side of the road that goes to the prison. Girlanda told me that he had just met with Amanda and she was sitting in the prison chapel by herself playing the guitar and singing. He said they were making plans to take her to Rome’s airport if she got off. I finished the interview, left the cameraman, Fulvio Paolocci, outside the prison and headed back to town. I had my lap-top computer on me and frantically edited in the car as the taxi driver swung around the curved roads back up into Perugia. It is a wonder I did not get sick. I finished the edit, and attached my phone-key card and began to transmit the video edit from the taxi while I was writing up the story.

I filed the story and twittered that an Italian MP had told me Amanda would take a plane from Rome. Clearly lots of journalists were following Twitter, within a half-hour CNN, Sky Italia, BBC and ABC were all asking me about that news that Amanda would fly out of Rome.

Back at the courthouse, there was no word on how the jury was doing, but the people of Perugia were gathering. Not only were there 500 journalists running around but a steady flow of curious on-lookers had developed into a crowd around the courthouse.

At 8pm the word came out that the verdict would be at 9:30 pm. Associated Press Television News together with Reuters TV had been chosen to be pool television camera on the verdict. A small group of journalists and photographers were also selected for the pool. APTN had organized to have two cameras, one on each side of the back of the courtroom. I was to stand next to one cameraman and use hand signals to indicate to my colleague, Gigi Navarra, on the other side of the room next to our other cameraman. We couldn’t use cell phones or walkie-talkies and we needed to be quiet and fast. It was important that the two cameras were always on different shots. We invented hand signals for “Close on Amanda” “Medium on Amanda” “Close on Kerchers” “Medium on Kerchers”, “Wide on courtroom”, “close on Judge”.

The journalists chosen to be in the courtroom for the verdict gathered in front of the courthouse door. Carabinieri military police and plain-clothesed police checked out the documents of the journalists, photographers, and camera crews. Then they lined us up and marched us in. We walked single file down the stair-case and then they stopped us there, each one on a step, against the wall, and told us to be quiet because the jury was still closed in a room nearby. It was hot in the stairwell and the journalists, camera crews and police were sweaty and smelly. We were all tense. To pass the time, Gigi and practiced our hand signals “close on Amanda”, “wide on judge” “medium on Kerchers” until we almost mixed ourselves up.

Finally they let us in the empty courtroom. Platforms, ladders, cables, tripods, microphones needed to be set up quickly. It didn’t take long for us all to start bickering about positions. The court clerk urged us to be quiet and respectful.

The families began arriving. Amanda’s family, Raffaele’s family, and Meredith Kercher’s family. Meredith’s mother Arline had come for the verdict with Meredith’s sister Stephanie and brother Lyle. Throughout this story, the Kercher family has demonstrated admirable dignity. The entire family – parents and three remaining siblings have been composed, thoughtful and respectful of all those involved. The Kercher’s quietly took their seats at the back of the courtroom and sat somberly awating the verdict.

Then the usual group of penetentiary police in their blue berets emerged, escorting a whimpering Amanda through the doorway. She was hunched over, trembling and crying. She took her seat and her lawyers tried to comfort her. I signaled to Gigi. “Close on Amanda”. My cameraman was Nick Dumitrache from Bucharest he zoomed in on Amanda.

Not to be trite, but the tension was so high in the courtroom, you could have cut it with a knife.

Amanda continued to whimper as we waited for the judge and jury. Nick kept his camera zoomed-in on Amanda. All of a sudden, Nick, his eye still in the camera’s viewfinder, reached over and gripped my arm, squeezing tightly. “What is it????” I whispered, alarmed. “Is the camera not working? Is it the audio??”

“No, no, that’s ok.” he whispered back, “I just can’t take it. They can’t convict her. They can’t do that to her.”

Just two nights earlier, at a crowded trattoria in Perugia, I had explained the whole murder case to Nick. We were at a long table of AP staffers covering the story, and I wanted to make sure my two colleagues who had flown in from Bucharest, Nick and Olimphiu, knew all the background on the murder case.

Only two days of following Amanda, and Nick was feeling passionately involved. Amanda seems to do that people.

The Judge then walked in and delivered the verdict. The Knox family was restrained. There were some small celebratory whoops, hugs and tears. Amanda totally broke down. Again the penetentiary police escorted her out right past me. She was sobbing desperately and the two police guards held her up as they got her out the door.

Once it was over, I made my last run up those three flights of stairs and emerged from the courthouse door to a shocking sight. The piazza was crawling with people and they were yelling “Vergogna” “Vergogna” “Vergogna”!!!! (Shame! Shame! Shame!). At a certain point they switched and began chanting “Meredith” “Meredith” “Meredith”. Clearly the crowd outside the courthouse did not agree with the decision. The Judge’s stadium prediction had been accurate.

Cameraman Gianfranco Stara and I tried to make our way through the crowd to get some interviews. We managed to catch Amanda’s defense lawyer Carlo Della Vedova. I had just told him a few days earlier that my daughter and his neice were best friends in the same 6th grade class. I think he took pity on this poor working Mamma and stopped to give me the following comment in English, “Amanda is looking forward to going home, to the family, to Seattle, she is thankful to the justice system that has rectified a mistake.”

From the courthouse, Gianfranco and I had to run join our crews who were waiting to film Amanda leave the prison. We were too late. When we got there our crews said she had already left in a black mercedes followed by a jeep.

Corrado Daclon of the US-Italia Foundation accompanied Amanda out of prison and the next day to the Rome airport. He later told me that as Amanda passed through the open-air area in the middle of the prison, all the prisoners from the men’s blocks on the other side yelled out the windows “AMANDA, AMANDA, AMANDA” and “LIBERTA'”, “LIBERTA'”. He said they were waving white cloths through the barred windows. Amanda, Corrado said, jumped for joy and waved back at them.

From the prison it was back to the courthouse for me and time to do my report for AP’s on-line video. I am sorry to say that my on-line version of the story – done at 2am is not as good as I would like it to be. But if anyone is interested, at least one can get a sense of the atmosphere I’ve described above. Here’s the link.

Stand-up for AP's On-Line Service outside Courthouse in Perugia. Freeze frame of APTN video shot by Nick Dumitrache

PERUGIA, THE DAY AFTER
The day after Amanda left, the Kercher’s held a press conference. APTN covered it live. I was once again impressed by their incredible dignity. They expressed their sadness and frustration with the decision. They wondered if the court has concluded that Rudy Guede did not act alone, and Amanda and Raffaele were not there, than who else did it. They said they will wait an hope. The Kercher’s are so well-spoken, articulate, and dignified. They teach a lesson to us all.

The city of Perugia I think can come out with its head held high. A terrible tragedy took place there, but it could have happened anywhere. The people of Perugia put up with the invasion of an ravenous international press corps crawling over their city and sticking microphones in their faces. But it is over now and the city continues to be a stunningly beautiful Italian hill town.

This morning, back in Rome, I was asked to appear on an Italian morning news show, Unomattina, similar to Good Morning America, to talk about the case. As I sat in the studio I watched a report just in of Amanda arriving in Seattle and getting a stadium-like welcome from her fans on that side of the Atlantic.

“Ah, ” I thought, “the Amanda Knox Reality show isn’t over yet.”

A FEW FINAL NOTES ON THE CHANGING MEDIA:

TWITTER
The media and ways of reporting continue to change dramatically everyday. This is the first story that I have covered where twitter seemed to play an important role. My colleague Barbie Nadeau was tweeting constantly from the courthouse. She explained to me that she was giving a blow-by-blow account of the trial (in 140 characters each) so that followers could feel like they were sitting in the courtroom. I asked her how she could follow a trial if she is constantly tweeting, and she said he uses tweets almost as notes to herself. John Hooper, correspondent for “The Guardian” and the “Economist”, was also a frequent courtroom tweeter. Many others participated as well: freelancer Andrea Vogt, BBC’s Daniel Sandford.. I tweeted a bit myself on the last days, with little background tidbits and atmosphere, and I noticed that my number of twitter followers immediately grew exponentially. Apparently #Amandaknox is a good way to get attention. Journalists were also using twitter to share information about the case such as: where was Amanda, when the prosecutors were having a press conference, what the kerchers were doing. It was like a bulletin board.

LIVE U
APTN now uses what we call a LIVE U which is looks like a backpack that you can attach to a camera and you dial a number and it will send out live images. I am not much of a technical expert but it apparently has the equivalent of four phone cards inside that allow the video transmission. The quality is obviously lower than what you get from a camera cabled to a satellite truck, but it is usable. You can also move very quickly from one location to another with a LIVE U. So, on this story APTN was able to use the satellite truck at the courthouse and keep the LIVE U at the prison so we could provide live TV coverage from two places at the same time without incurring enormous costs. All part of the Amanda Knox Reality Show.

FTP AND PHONE CARDS
This is less new, but it has changed the way I work. As I mentioned above, when I work in the field now, I always have my computer (MacBook) with me. When the cameraperson is done shooting something he hands me a P2 card, a little metal card about the size of a playing card. I download the images, edit them on Final Cut Pro and then transmit them using a phone key card.

Post in: Italiano

17 Comments

  1. Avatar
    John Menard
    2011/10/06

    In connection with this case I have discovered your blog. The background information, descriptions, pictures, and general are wonderful. Thank you for taking the time to share this information.

    Reply
    • Trisha Thomas
      Trisha Thomas
      2011/10/06

      Gosh, what a nice compliment! Thank you. Trisha

      Reply
  2. Avatar
    Elspeth Slayter
    2011/10/06

    Trish,

    Fascinating post. I love hearing all of the details. I love hearing about all of the technology. I am left, however, wondering about how the kids handled you being away, who did all the ferrying around, what questions the kids (esp. the girls) asked you about the story…it seems to me that there are so many more “adult” things that parents have to talk to their kids about these days – hard to imagine our parents speaking to us about such things. Not all bad, not all good. On a separate note – I am sure there is a post waiting on the behind the scenes balancing act of being a Mamma to your kids in Roma whilst in Perugia!

    Reply
    • Trisha Thomas
      Trisha Thomas
      2011/10/06

      Thank you for your comment. Perhaps I should do a separate blog post on the Mamma side. It is certainly less dramatic. But here is just a quick response. Before any work trip away from home I put together a nearly hour-by-hour schedule of family movements– school, waterpolo, soccer, swimming, scouts, chorus, dentist/orthodontist appointments etc. I leave a long list of instructions of who takes whom where and when and then leave cell phone numbers of all those involved. I joke with my colleagues that “producing” the family operation, is sometimes similar to a producer’s job preparing coverage of a big news operation. Nico needs to be at waterpolo at 8pm, or Nick the cameraman needs to be at the prison at 8pm. My children were all interested in the story and the fate of Amanda. My daughter Caterina was happy because her math teacher saw me on an Italian TV show being interviewed in front of the prison. I think Chiara was pleased that the Defense Lawyer who gave me a brief interview outside the court is the uncle of her best buddy at school. The hard part for any Mamma is coming home after a big story in which you’ve had a huge hit of adrenaline and at home you find a massive to-do list and everybody a bit irritable with you because you haven’t been around helping. I will try to do a separate post on some of these issues one day.

      Reply
  3. Avatar
    Alan
    2011/10/06

    Thanks for the coverage without any hype.

    Reply
  4. Avatar
    AdrBarr
    2011/10/06

    Congratulations on some really first rate reporting on this most spectacular case. It was indeed a reality show – due in no small part to today’s technology and 24 hour news cycle. Well do I know that “getting the story”, “getting there first”, “live and in person” all add up to mayhem both in the newsroom and on the scene. Through this your reporting remained steadfastly unbiased and enlightening, never succumbing to the”crowd mob mentality” omnipresent in the journalism of today. May I add that while you clearly showed sympathy for Amanda, never could it be said that you had forgotten the victim. You were at all times respectful of the Kercher family, their loss and the memory of their daughter. Well done. It will take a while for you to come down from this one. Brava!

    Reply
    • Trisha Thomas
      Trisha Thomas
      2011/10/06

      Thank you for your kind comments, it definitely will take some time to come down from this one.

      Reply
  5. Avatar
    jwthomas
    2011/10/06

    The entire report is facinating. I’m incredulous at how you write and edit on the fly. Its a wonder that anything credible comes out of a media circus, Also how the competition between reporters and networks drives the process as well.

    And what of Ms Knox? Will she be able to pull her life together? M The long run story on her and on the other would be very interesting to follow.

    I found the comments on the dignity of the Kershners a strong side bar to the story. Glad you are back home but I will miss the hot inside info.

    I also found the portions on the technology very interesting.—Keep up the great work!!

    Keep up the great work

    Reply
    • Trisha Thomas
      Trisha Thomas
      2011/10/06

      Thanks for the comment. In response to a couple of things. I have no doubts that Amanda Knox will pull her life together. She also has the opportunity to make loads of money. The US networks are competing for the first big interview, there will be book deals, movies etc. Raffaele Sollecito is going to be a different story. He clearly has a weaker character and seemed to become more so as the trial went on. The Kercher’s will continue their lives with the same dignity they’ve shown all along. The media technology continues to change and it is hard to keep up with it all– I find the young interns in our office are better at figuring it all out than I am. It is now fast, live and 24/7. Is there still room for contemplation and reflection? Is there still room for journalists with years of experience. I hope so!! But sometimes it just feels like a reality show.

      Reply
  6. Avatar
    Nancy mize
    2011/10/06

    As a former journalist myself and owner of a travel agency now, the interest in this casesnd your coverage was keen. Thank you so much for the insights and descriptions. I followed barbie’s tweets as well as a friend of mine in Rome told me about the play-by-plays she was doing. It is spmuch more interesting to get thenews and impressions live, before they are censored and processed. Thanks!

    Reply
  7. Avatar
    Gwen Thomas
    2011/10/06

    Well such mixed emotions… While happy over the verdict, I feel so sad for the Kercher family as well as sad for Amanda Knox who will carry this with her the rest of her life. Perhaps there will now be a little bit of closure for all.

    Reply
  8. Avatar
    spuds
    2011/10/11

    Thank you for all the reporting you’ve done on this case.i am one of Amanda’s biggest fans.She’s done everything possible to further relations between America and Italy. She even helped the solve the crime by saying a blackman did it. Please carry on.

    Reply
    • Trisha Thomas
      Trisha Thomas
      2011/10/11

      Dear Spuds,

      The problem with these comments is that the tone or intention of the writer is not always clear. I am not sure whether you are being sarcastic about Amanda Knox, and my comments on her, or racist towards black men. If you would like, you may clarify.

      However, I do think you have brought up an important point that needs to be addressed that other people have raised with me privately.

      Why is it that the two middle to upper middle class white kids get off the hook, and the less well-to-do young man from the Ivory Coast has ended up in jail for 16 years.

      Let me address that directly. Rudy Guede’s bloody handprints were on the wall of the room where Meredith was murdered. His DNA was plentiful in the room. He never denied he was in the house that night. It is pretty clear he was involved in the murder. Rudy Guede also chose a fast-track trial, separating himself from Knox and Sollecito. In the Knox/Sollecito appeals trial the Judge and Jury relied on an independent experts’ report which indicated there were no reliable DNA samples of either Amanda Knox or Raffaele Sollecito in the room. This could be due to sloppy work by the scientific police but nevertheless, it created a reasonable doubt of their guilt.

      Early on in the investigation Amanda accused a Congolese man, Perugia pub owner, Patrick Lumumba, of the murder. Lumumba was put in prison for two weeks despite his repeated insistence that he was at his pub that night and had plenty of witnesses. To many both Amanda’s behavior and the police behavior towards Lumumba smacked of racism. The appeals court did find Amanda guilty of defamation and sentenced her to three years in prison for it. Amanda has already spent four years in prison, so she has served her sentence on that one and will not have to do any more time.

      I believe Americans – of all races– are sensitive on the issue of race and justice because it is a big problem in the US. As a young journalist, I remember once being in a jammed elevator in a New York City courthouse. Everyone was chatting away and suddenly an African-American man said loudly, “In this country you are innocent until proven black.” The elevator went dead silent. Everyone was contemplating this statement, probably hoping it wasn’t true but worrying that maybe it was.

      The recent case of Dominque-Strauss Kahn in New York left some people wondering if one just has to be rich, powerful and white and eventually you will be let go.

      I remember a horrible case in Boston back in 1989 in which a white man named Charles Stuart was leaving the Brigham and Women’s hospital with his pregnant wife. He shot her in the head, then shot himself in the stomach. Both the wife and the baby died later. When the police arrived, he blamed a “black man”. The police began a massive manhunt. Several weeks later it was discovered that Stuart had a hefty health insurance on his wife’s life. He had done it himself. As police began to investigate him, he jumped off a bridge and committed suicide.

      But back to the Knox case. We are waiting for what is called in Italian the “motivazioni” which a court releases 90 days after a decision. The “motivazioni” explain in great detail the decision of the judge and jury in the case. In Rudy’s case, and in Amanda and Raffaele’s lower court trial, the “motivazioni” indicated that there were several people involved, that Rudy Guede did not act alone. The family of Meredith Kercher say they are waiting for the “motivazioni” and if the appeals court confirms that Rudy did not act alone, they expect the Italian authorities to find out who was with him. The prosecutors still insist they believe it was Amanda and Raffaele, and they are taking it up one step higher in the Italian legal system to the “Cassazione.”

      Bottom line: There are still lots of questions marks in the case.

      Reply
  9. Avatar
    Quentin Zoerhoff
    2011/10/13

    Hi Trisha,

    An excellent and informative piece. I recall that you were the first English speaking reporter to talk to Amanda Knox after the first trial and I admired the wonderfully sensitive job you did then. I personally am satisfied that Knox and Sollecito had nothing to do with the murder of poor Meredith. I believe this view will be fully accepted withing five years or so, after all of the cultural misunderstanding have faded and people look at the evidence alone.

    In the mean time I think it is only fair to stress a couple points:

    1. Knox and Sollecito received the strongest form of exoneration possible under Italian law. In effect, Judge Hellmann said they proved their innocence and were absolved because “they did not commit the crime.”

    2. There was a good deal more to the defense appeal than the rehearing of Curatolo and the reexamination of the DNA evidence–as important as those were. The combined appeals of the Knox and Sollecito defense teams were a 450-page point-by-point rebuttal of Judge Massei’s sentencing report. Judges Hellmann and Zanetti obviously read the defense rebuttal before the public portion and may well have been influenced. I have read these documents, and, quite frankly, found them powerful and convincing.

    Anyway, keep up the fine work. I am sure you are anxious to move on to other things and I think this whole matter could benefit from a little benign neglect.

    Quentin Z
    Michigan

    Reply
    • Trisha Thomas
      Trisha Thomas
      2011/10/14

      Quentin — Thanks for your comments. I am very impressed, you certainly are well-informed on this case. Yes, I am glad to move on to other stories now. Lucky for those of us who cover Italy, we always have Silvio Berlusconi ready to give us something spicy to cover!

      Reply
  10. Avatar
    Peter Quennell
    2013/05/29

    All AP reporting was superficial at best and starting with Marta Falconi showed a gushy pro-Knox-family anti-Italy slant throughout which ended up on thousands of websites. AP didnt understand the wide scope of the evidence (see above for proof), didnt understand Italian law, and missed that the appeal was bent (yes, we know how) and the C&V consultancy was bent also. Judge Hellmann has been forcibly retired and Giuliano Mignini will be the next Prosecutor General of Umbria. Now that the Supreme Court and Florence prosecutors are correcting things and the two could face life, will AP finally dig deeper and do the same? There are some REAL stories here.

    Reply
    • Trisha Thomas
      Trisha Thomas
      2013/05/30

      Peter — thank you for your comment. I think you are being unfair to AP and to my colleague Marta Falconi. Our coverage was far from a gushy pro-Knox-family, anti-Italy slant. I think you must be getting us mixed up with some of the US TV Networks’ pro-Amanda slant. AP was anything but. I was even threatened with a suit by Amanda’s family’s agent after I visited her in prison with an Italian parliamentary group and reported on her conditions there. AP also covered any press conferences and comments given by the Kercher family and spoke regularly to their lawyer. Interestingly, after Amanda gave her TV interview a few weeks ago, I was asked to participate in a debate on it on an Italian TV program (UnoMattina). After the program one of my AP colleagues told me she thought I was far too harsh and judgmental of Amanda. This whole case is obviously a sensitive one that people on all sides get angry about. Let’s see how it goes in Florence. If you will be there, I would be happy to meet with you and hear what you have to say.

      Reply

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