The evidence; a primer

The Evidence

The science/law

Defense Argument

Prosecution Argument

Large Kitchen knife taken from Sollecito’s kitchen; Knox DNA on handle, Victim DNA found in scratch on blade DNA, see row below.

One charge  Knox was found guilty of was transportation of the knife; also sollecito’s particpation was based in part on sollecito having full control of  knife which points to his involvement;

Sollecito wrote in prison diary victim was over for dinner and he accidentally pricked her with the knife.

Bloodprint of knife on sheets does not match this knife. Argues against compatibility of wounds with this knife; contends that shorter knife made all three wounds.

Roommates testified victim never over at sollecito’s; Victim’s DNA on knife blade with Knox incriminates Knox in actual murder act.

 Prosecution contends knife compatible with one of three wounds on victim; thus this knife was one of two used. Argued that larger wound was compatible with/made by knife from Sollectio’s kitchen.

The Knife’s DNA (victim) Victim’s DNA found via Low Count Number testing (LCN); an emerging controversial DNA test. In 2007 UK overturned a ruling that was primarily based on LCN DNA testing, but then adopted a set of testing processes under which LCN DNA results can be allowed.

According to one comment, non-repeatable tests are allowed in the Italian system if the defence is present for the test; notification that the test is occurring passes for ‘presence’.

Unreliabity of LCN DNA test; victim’s dna on knife result is due to contamination.

Non-repeatable DNA test would not be accepted under other country’s standards.

LCN DNA testing a scientific process. Lab took all precautions. Contamination was not possible.

 Knife with double-dna ties knox to murder.

Blood (victim’s) in bathroom and bedroom with apparent break-in, Knox dna found in several of the drops   Knox lived in apartment; Latent DNA result of sharing apartment; in bathroom; at one point reports indicated knox’s defense was that she touched recent ear piercing then touched one blood spot after shower Victim’s blood mixed with DNA of Knox, particularly in one key place, that of the bedroom with the “staged break-in”.
staged break-in   Break-in in other bedroom not staged;it was how Guede entered; Guede surprised by return of victim, robbery turned into murder. Climbing and entering that room’s window not impossible nor unfeasible. Break-in was staged to coverup murder and point suspicion away from Knox who lived in the house.

Evidence break-in was staged:

Glass on top of clothes and rock found in room. clothes had already been tossed on floor, so glass was broken after clothes were tossed on floor by knox/sollecito.

No valuables removed from room

Only Knox’s dna found mixed with victim’s blood in room.

Difficult if not impossible climb to break into that room.

Footprints on pillowcase: several found attributed to Guede, 1 attributed to Knox    Print to indescriminate to determine/match to Knox. Pattern more of a match with Guede’s shoe. No shoe owned by knox matching pattern ever produced by prosecution. Other shoeprint in victim’s blood on pillowcase match with Guede’s shoe;

1 shoeprint from a women’s size 36-38 asics.  Points to involvement of others at murder scene. Knox wears 37.5.

DNA in bedroom  

Matching of DNA in a sample that had multiple contributors (i.e. multiple DNA) is difficult and time consuming.

Many knox supportors assume that since presence of DNA shows guilt, absence of DNA shows innocence.

This is actually a logical fallacy; in terms of logic, the argument put forth by Knox defender is: “If a, then b” implies “if not a, then not b”. The second cannot be concluded from the first. In a plain english example: the statement “If I’m taking a shower, then I’m wet” cannot be used to conclude “If I’m not taking a shower, then I’m not wet”.  (In fact, the possibility always exists that someone just walked outside into a drenching rain. )

All dna in victim’s blood not matching the victim belongs to Guede; no DNA evidence puts Knox in victim’s room. Unknown; but theoretically due to the copious amount of victim’s blood and possibility that Knox & Sollecito did not suffer major injuries, its not unlikely that finding minute traces of Knox & Sollecito would be difficult, if not impossible.
Bare footprint in victim’s blood on bath mat   Footprint belongs to Guede. (FOA site presents both Guede and Sollecito footprint as same size, when in reality Guede and Sollecito wear different size shoes. Footprint in blood on bathmat matches Sollecito footprint based on geometrical analysis; Guede’s footprint ruled out due to hammer-toe and raised second toe
Footprints revealed with luminol Luminol is a substance used in forensics to detect blood that may have been attempted to have been washed away, including attempts using bleach. Its reaction is a ‘glow’ (luminesence) that is revealed in low light/darkness.  Luminol reacts with a varity of substances, including copper.  Thus, the Luminol test itself does not confirm presense of blood. Reaction intensity/duration varies by substance tested. Bleach reacts quicker. Experienced technicians should be able to distinguish the substanced based on the reaction.

If the use of luminol was required to detect blood, there may not be enough substance to test for blood/dna while still reacting to luminol test. Application of luminol can further dillute remaining blood/substances.

Does not dispute size/knox compatibility. Footprints were made in some other substance prior to murder. Substance cannot be confirmed to be blood due to Luminol reaction with other substances. No DNA found in footprints revealed in luminol. Size of footprints compatible with knox, 1 print compatible with Sollecito. Technician testified in her opinion the subtance Luminol reacted with was blood.Footprints found after observation that bare footprint in blood was on bathmat, but no other bare footprints located in bedroom or between bedroom and bathroom.

Continue to: Dispelling the Rumors by clicking on “more” link.

Dispelling the rumors

Bleach No bleach receipts from date of murder or discovery ever produced during trial; early media reports were incorrect. 1 witness did not see Knox in shop 1 witness has Knox outside supply shop @ 8am
Washer     Media reports indicate other roommate testified wash was warm and clothes were victim’s.
Mop Reports that Knox/Sollecito were found outside of apartment with mop by communications police incorrect. Knox/sollecito neeeded mop for clean-up of water in Sollectio’s kitchen. Knox took mop over after shower, returned mop when Sollecito came back to apartment with her. Knox/sollectio offer conflicting reasons why water on floor at sollecito’s- either pipe break or spill from cooking pasta. Unknown; forensic tests unknown.

3 thoughts on “The evidence; a primer

  1. I have no opinion on Knox/Sollecito guilt because the reports of the evidence have been so biased — on both sides.

    I have looked for objective info on the mop, bleach, and laundry because if any/some of the related allegations were true, I’d interpret them as fairly strong circumstantial evidence of guilt.

    Now you say it is NOT true that K & S were found with a mop (and in some reports “a bucket of bleach”) the morning after the crime. Interesting… That is one of the more enduring stories and even shows up on pro-Knox sites, along with photos of Sollecito’s plumbing problem. Wikipedia also mentions how the two were found with a mop and backs it up with a link to a British news report that simply says that’s what the police reported. I always wondered why the purported mop had not been analyzed, but if there was no mop…

    You further give the origin of the laundry story. Anti-Knox sites claim the washing machine was running when the police arrived and Kercher’s clothes had been washed in strong bleach. Again, if true, well… who washes their roommate’s clothes? But no, I would not trust a roommate’s retrospective report. It’s well known that witnesses (subconsciously) revise stories once they believe someone is guilty.

    I appreciate your attempt to be objective. Somewhere or another I found the origin of the bleach purchase story. The store owner was interviewed shortly after the crime and explicitly said he had not seen K or S in his store that day. However, he changed his mind nearly 8 months later — as people do.

  2. What legal right did Stefanoni have to disregard a negative result for DNA on the material taken from the knife?

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