Amanda Knox returned to Italy to speak about wrongful convictions in her first trip to the country since 2011, when an appeals court acquitted her of the murder of her roommate. Speaking at a Festival on Criminal Justice in Modena, Knox said she was afraid “that I will be molested, derided, framed, that new accusations will be directed against me for telling my truth,” the New York Times reports. Knox said that “a false narrative can be powerful and undermine justice, especially when amplified by the media.” She blamed the news media, local and international, for not having dug to reveal the flaws in the prosecution’s case. She said journalists did stories about her purportedly salacious past.
“I was never a defendant, innocent until proven guilty,” she said of public perception. “I was sly, a psychopath, dirty, a slut, guilty until proven otherwise.” Knox said, “It’s easy to see what we want to see,” she said, reducing criminal cases to “black and white stories populated by demons and saints.” While Knox’ case was pending, hordes of news cameras and journalists followed it as it bounced from court to court. Since her return to the U.S., Knox has been involved with the Innocence Project and has hosted a Facebook series and a podcast on true crime for Sundance on justice issues. A white paper for the Italian criminal lawyer’s association found that 82 percent of news coverage of criminal cases favor the prosecution. Knox said she was grateful that her innocence had been acknowledged, but “this does not absolve the state of having tried me for eight long years, with no real proof and on the basis of an absurd theory, and it does not absolve the media who profited from selling a scandalous story.”