Rudy Guede was convicted in 2010 of participating in the 2007 murder of Meredith Kercher. The prosecution claims the two other participants are Amanda Knox and Raffaele Sollecito. Knox and Sollecito are currently appealing their conviction of the same crime. The case against the three of them involves a suspected clean up of the hallway in the apartment after the crime. Meredith’s blood was found in the bathroom, and half a footprint in her blood was found on the bathroom mat. However, there was no visible blood between Meredith’s bedroom and the bathroom. The only visible blood in the hallway were faint partial shoe prints that led directly out the front door of the apartment.
After the murder was discovered, the media reported almost daily on developments in the case. The day of the murder, the press reported on the blood found in the bathroom and the bedroom. But until police used luminol at the apartment on December 18th, the media didn’t report on any significant blood found in the hallway. Between November 2nd and December 18th, only one person stated that significant amounts of blood had been in the hallway; Rudy Guede. And he wrote about it in his diary between Nov 20th and Dec 6th, after being captured in Germany.
The police arrived at the apartment on November 2nd. According to media reports, the blood they was only in the bathroom and Meredith’s bedroom. When the scene was later examined after the discovery of the body, police found visible blood patterns on the floor left by Guede’s left shoe as he left the apartment. None of the people who arrived in the apartment on the afternoon of November 2nd reported seeing them; these footprints are not in any of the stories of the events of Nov 2nd told by Amanda Knox nor Raffaele Sollecito. So, while these prints were visible, they were not substantially obvious.
On December 18th 2007 investigators applied Luminol in the hallway and other bedrooms. This forensic chemical is used to detect blood which has been cleaned away. The Luminol revealed several footprints in the hallway between the bedrooms of Knox and Meredith. Some of these footprints were leading towards Meredith’s door. They also discovered prints in Filomena’s room which contained Meredith’s DNA and Amanda Knox’s DNA. They also revealed a footprint in Amanda Knox’s bedroom. (The defense unsuccessfully contested the investigator’s conclusions that these prints were made with blood).
On November 19 2007, an international arrest warrant was issued for Rudy Guede. He was arrested in Germany on November 20th. Guede remained in Germany until his extradition on December 3rd. During his stay in jail in Germany, Guede wrote a long statement that was published and translated. Guede’s writings are similar to to Knox’s jail writings in many ways- they both try to write out their own detailed version of events, while pointing blame elsewhere. But Guede’s comments may in fact be confirmation of a clean-up after the murder of Meredith Kercher (emphasis added):
I am asking myself how is it possible that Amanda could have slept in all that mess, and took a shower with all that blood in the bathroom and corridor? (Guede, Germany Diary, P21)
The police did not find evidence of any other blood until December 18th, AFTER Guede returned from Germany. As indicated above, the luminol revealed multiple footprints in the hallway, in Knox’s bedroom, and in Filomena’s bedroom. The image at right shows these results in blue. Guede’s partial footprints are shown in red. The conclusion is inescapable: Guede knew there would be significant evidence of blood in the hallway, before the police themselves found that evidence.
How did Guede know there would be more blood found in the hallway, before the police found that evidence on December 18th? And why wasn’t that blood there on the morning of November 2nd? The courts believe the blood in the hallway was cleaned after the murder of Meredith Kercher. And the courts believe only one person had the motivation to hide this evidence: Amanda Knox.
In Judge Massei’s statement for the original conviction of Knox and Sollecito, he writes about the clean-up that is believed to have happened:
Further confirmation is constituted by the fact that, after Meredith’s murder, it is clear that some traces were definitely eliminated, a cleaning activity was certainly carried out. In fact, the bare foot which, stained with blood, left its footprint on the sky-blue mat in the bathroom, could only have reached that mat by taking steps which should have left other footprints on the floor, also marked out in blood just like (in fact, most likely, with even more [blood], since they were created before the footprint printed on the mat) the one found on the mat itself. Of such other very visible footprints of a bloody bare foot, on the contrary, there is no trace. (Massei, Dec 09; PMF translation)
In defense of Guede, Knox, and Sollecito, some would claim that Guede heard about blood in the hallway in the news. Rudy Guede was arrested 18 days following the murder of Meredith Kercher. During that time he had access to read the news and watch reports. I have searched for articles in the period between November 2nd and December 18 which mention blood. All of the articles I have found so far discuss blood in the bedroom or the bathroom. One or two discuss footprints leading to the front door. None of them discuss blood in the hallway that would justify a statement from Guede of “tutto quel sangue nel bagno e sul corridoghe” (all that blood in the bathroom and in the corridor)
Guede himself said he went between the bedroom and the bathroom, so may have tracked blood into the bathroom and therefore known blood would be found in the hallway. Even that knowledge however confirms a clean-up, as there was not a trail of blood between the bathroom and Meredith’s room that justifies the footprint on the bathmat and blood found in the bathroom.
I have my own questions as a result of Guede’s knowledge of blood in the hallway:
Could the attack have started in the hallway? Could the first blood shed have been on the hallway tiles?
The prosecution and courts argue that Amanda Knox had a role in the attack and murder. Knox and her supporters are very adamant that there is no trace of Knox in Meredith’s bedroom. While the courts argue otherwise, could Knox’s role have been limited to the hallway?
Sadly, we may never know the full truth of what happened on the evening of November 1st, 2007.
Timeline of media reports on blood
- Nov 2nd: Meredith Kercher found. Blood found in bathroom.
- Nov 5th: Police analyzing traces of blood from apartment below.
- Nov 5th: A “trail of blood” is on the inside handle of the door to the apartment.
- Nov 7th: reports of Amanda Knox’s statements, includes finding blood in the bathroom.
- Nov 14th: Police use of Luminol at Sollectio’s house. First reports on the knife seized by police from Sollecito’s house.
- Nov 19th: Analysis of blood in bedroom (pillow, bra, etc).
- Nov 22nd: Guede’s prints in blood.
- Nov 27th: Amanda Knox’s blood on bathroom tap.
- Nov 28th: Blood in bathroom.
- Dec 5th: Reports of Guede’s letter to father: “there was so much blood”.
Timeline of events
- Nov 2nd, 2am – 4:30 am: Guede seen by witnesses at Domus nightclub.
- Nov 3: Guede leaves Perugia for Germany
- Nov 11: Guede’s cell phone tracked in Milan (Corriere)
- Nov 12: Newspaper reports a 4th suspect.
- Nov 19: Guede identified as suspect in newspapers.
- Nov 19: Guede skype conversation with friend.
- Nov 20: Patrick released from prison.
- Nov 20: Guede arrested while trying to return to italy on train in Germany.
- Nov 21: Guede interrogated by German police; Guede admits to being at apartment, blames an italian man for murder.
- Nov 20-Dec 5: Guede writes diary in German prison.
- Dec 3: Germany grants Guede’s extradition back to Italy.
- Dec 6: Guede returns to Perugia.
- Dec 7: Guede interrogated by Magistrate.
- Dec 14: Guede ordered to remain in prison.
- Dec 17: Knox is questioned by Mingini.
- Dec 18: Police use luminol in apartment and find footprints in hallway and in Filomena’s bedroom.