Friday, March 27, 2009

Trial: Witness Emulates A Loud Scream She Heard On The Night

Posted by Peter Quennell

[click for larger image]

Nick Pisa has the first report. Excerpts:

Nara Capezzali, 68, told the trial of the Brit student’s alleged killers, Amanda Knox and Raffaele Sollecito, the bloodcurdling scream “made my flesh crawl, it was not a normal scream”,,.

Mrs Capezzali said: “I went to bed around 9-9.30pm as there was nothing on the TV and I woke up around two hours later to go to the bathroom.

“On my way I passed by the window and heard a scream, not a normal scream but a prolonged scream, it made my skin crawl. I didn’t know what was happening.

“I looked out the window but didn’t see anything. Then a few minutes later I heard running on the metal staircase and then running through the leaves going in the other direction, it was at least two people.

“The scream left me really disturbed, even now it troubles me, it was a woman’s scream, there was no call for help it was just a scream, then nothing.”

Mrs Capezzali imitated the scream she heard by making a prolonged screeching noise.

Knox, dressed in a blue jumper and jeans, stared at Mrs Capezzali as she gave her evidence occasionally making notes or talking with her legal team.

A link to Kermit’s Powerpoints again on this very credible witness, and the CBS network’s hair-brained attempt to discredit her.

Nice move, CBS, intimidating foreign witnesses. Even nicer that you’ve been very quiet lately - and that you’ve disappeared Paul Ciolino.

Posted by Peter Quennell on 03/27/09 at 03:00 PM in Evidence & WitnessesOther witnessesTrials 2008 & 2009


AGI is now reporting this:  “She was a genuine, spontaneous and effective witnesses,” according to Rudy Guede’s lawyers Walter Biscotti and Nicodemo Gentile, now present in the courtroom to prepare for his appeal.

“We always thought that Ms Capezalli was the true super witness of this process… The witness clearly observed perfectly at night the escape from the murder of TWO people, one here and the other there…. This version fits perfectly with the story of Rudy who has always argued that while the others murdered Meredith he was fleeing.”

Additionally Rome-based reporter Andrea Vogt  has a detailed report on Ms Capezalli’s testimony in the (now exclusively online) Seattle PI.


Comment: In fact the reports of her testimony are all saying that she heard two or three people running and she is pretty sure it was three. One up the steel steps to her right (east) and the others up toward the park to her left (west).

There is a continuing puzzle here. If we might assume that Sollecito and Knox ran up to the park to hang out and watch the gate of the house, did Rudy run up the steel steps or did he run up the stone steps? At least one witness now for each.

Or did he run twice up the stairs? At least one of the luminol footprints in the house is his size, so he conceivably may have done both, returning to the house for a brief period after running up one or other of the stairs.

Posted by Peter Quennell on 03/27/09 at 03:47 PM | #

Fast Pete

I suspect that a few stones are now going to be thrown and Raf is fast approaching decision time, “shall I give AK her alibi or look after my own sorry skin!!”.... 

My money is on the later.

Best regards to all


Posted by Love Wolf on 03/27/09 at 03:58 PM | #

Italian media is reporting that when Sollecito was being transported to Verona in north Italy in a police van the other day, to sit his entrance exam for post-graduate studies, he was allowed out of the van to make a call on his mobile phone. [prisoners have mobile phones?!]

At which point, an angry crowd assembled at the autostrada service area and began yelling angry charges at him and accusing him of a cruel and diabolical crime. He was rather promptly put back in the van and driven on his merry way.

Nothing we’ve ever read in the Italian media suggests that there is a more positive view of him in Italy than there is of the other defendant. There seems on the whole a lot of pent-up anger against both of them. In Italy Meredith is a loved and lamented person.

Perhaps you’d better wear the Halloween costume, Sollecito, next time the urge for a bathroom break on the autostrada comes over you.

Posted by Peter Quennell on 03/27/09 at 05:31 PM | #

Nara Capezzali also talked about the drug dealing and drug taking below her house. Does that explain Kolmani’s presence ?.

She said that at first she saw Knox and Meredith going to college together, later they she saw one following the other and ‘understood that they were not friends anymore’

Antonella Monacchia, a young teacher who lives with her parents opposite the house testified to hearing a man and a woman arguing in Italian, followed by a loud scream. Another nieghbour, was awoken by the sounds of people running.

This means that the ‘lone wolf theory’ ... i.e. Guede acted alone, is well and truely buried?

The court won’t allow Ak or RS to be present at the inpection of the house by jurors.

Posted by Kevin on 03/27/09 at 06:01 PM | #

As Kevin reports above, Antonella Monacchi, another neighbor up above the house, has testified that she heard people heatedly arguing in the cottage on the night in question.  A dispute between a man and a woman, and then an agonizing cry of pain.

Antonella Monacchi is a young woman who lives with her parents a few dozen meters from the cottage.“I went to bed around 10:00 pm. Then I was awakened by a fight that happened between a man and a woman who spoke in Italian. Shortly after I heard a scream high and dry for a woman.”

Posted by Peter Quennell on 03/27/09 at 06:48 PM | #

Franceso Tavernese, head of the University of Perugia’s Onaosi College (believed to be a college for special cases) has testified.

He remembered Raffaele as a “taciturn, introverted and shy” boy who often blushed and was embarrased.

Sollecito was there from 2003 to 2005 and initially had some difficulty in adapting, though “it is normal that the boys feel disorientation as a result of their parting with the family and entering the new university.”

The teacher recalled that Raffaele saw many films, was into sports, frequented the gyms including that for kick boxing, and loved manga comics.

“Raffaele spoke little” even when “his mother went away without saying anything to anyone”.

Possibly that last remark refers to her death, which has some air of mystery about it.

Posted by Peter Quennell on 03/27/09 at 07:04 PM | #

Leonardo Fazio, a companion of Sollecito at one point, has described him as “normal, quiet and perhaps introverted.”

Posted by Peter Quennell on 03/27/09 at 07:06 PM | #

Today’s trial session is now concluded in Perugia, and we’ll have any further reports of the testimony up here tonight. Thanks for reading and caring for Meredith.

Posted by Peter Quennell on 03/27/09 at 07:27 PM | #

I’ve read Andrea Vogt report and I can’t find anywhere on the Italian press the detail about Nara being confused about the hour and day she heard the scream. Strange.

I don’t know about you people, but I think those pictures of the two defendants acting like they’re walking down the Croisette at Cannes Film Festival SICK and REVOLTING. How long before someone tells them they are been tried for aggravated murder? They seem oblivious to it. Their behavior is disgusting.

Posted by Nicki on 03/27/09 at 11:00 PM | #

“I’ve read Andrea Vogt report and I can’t find anywhere on the Italian press the detail about Nara being confused about the hour and day she heard the scream. Strange.”

Yes that is definitely the only mention I have seen of any possible confusion too. I guess she actually was at the court? Sometimes their schedules are conflicted and others help them out. Very odd.

Posted by Peter Quennell on 03/27/09 at 11:31 PM | #

If just one of those people would have called about those horrible screams.  Just one.  :(

Posted by Karen on 03/28/09 at 12:08 AM | #

Nicki, Peter,

Ann Wise reported for ABC:

Under cross-examination from defense attorneys, Capezzali became confused about events, and was unsure after repeated questioning of the date on which she heard the scream. But she said she was sure it was the night before she found out that Kercher had been killed.

Sounds like a 68 yr old woman stood up to the cross examination OK? .. as testified by Guede’s lawyer. She was also supported by the evidence of two other witnesses.

The defense also questioned why Maria Dramis (like the shopkeeper) didn’t come forward until a journalist questioned her and took her to the police station. (Maria heard the footsteps running away).

One thing you find in Italy, is far more reluctance for people to get involved as witnesses. Look how many appartments overlook the house. Surely, if 2 people heard the scream, and another the footsteps, others did?. ... people don’t like to get involved, however that will be understood by the jurors.

The further south you go, the more pronounced this is. You’ll get blanked even asking where the post office is in Calabria or Sicily, it is almost an automatic reflex with Italians.

Posted by Kevin on 03/28/09 at 12:12 AM | #

I have to say that I am much more inclined to believe someone when they are a little confused about the facts.  I have a pretty good memory but ask me where I ate dinner last night, with whom I ate, what I ate, and at what time I ate, I will start to get fuzzy.  If the witness can’t remember the date but does remember it was the day before the police showed up across the street, that is much more believable to me than if she said that ot was unquestionably November 1st.

Posted by C3PO on 03/28/09 at 04:02 AM | #

well I think defense lawyers know how to cross examine, their goal is to confuse the witness. I agree that if Nara said she heard the scream the night before police showed up, her testimony is undisputable. And I suppose the jury is seeing it the same way.

Posted by Nicki on 03/28/09 at 04:07 AM | #

It also strengthens her testimony that there are two other ear witnesses. Frank Sfarzo for one has criticized the shop owner because his recall is too perfect to be credible. Using that yardstick, Nara looks like a pretty good witness. Unless there is a double standard in such matters?

Posted by Skeptical Bystander on 03/28/09 at 06:30 PM | #

I agree with Nicki—the behavior of AK and RS in the courtroom says it all: disconnected/deluded and arrogant enough to believe that they can get away with murder.

Frankly, if I were on the jury, that’s all the “evidence” I would need to see.

Posted by wayra on 03/28/09 at 11:12 PM | #
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