Silence broken by West Seattle mom of Italy murder suspect

For those following this internationally publicized case — according to the P-I’s Big Blog, Arbor Heights resident Edda Mellas, mother of tabloid-featured Italy murder suspect Amanda Knox, gave her first major interview to ABCNEWS, airing this Friday night.

24 Replies to "Silence broken by West Seattle mom of Italy murder suspect"

  • islewrite January 29, 2008 (2:24 pm)

    I’ll just be happy when the media quits using those wispy, clingy photos of her with her boyfriend/fellow suspect. They reek of deliberate, manipulative cuteness. Whether she wielded the murder weapon or not, Amanda, from all accounts, didn’t seem to be focusing her life on her studies, that’s for sure. Landing in a foreign country and having a boyfriend and hashish binges within a month says a lot about her priorities.

    (now climbing off soapbox)

  • JumboJim January 29, 2008 (2:54 pm)

    Dear islewrite,

    Whether you approve of the way she was living her life is so irrelevant I can’t really believe it needs saying, but apprently it does. How do you know the media even has a lot of choice in what photos they use? Perhaps they just use the photo which reproduces best – assuming they have a choice of more than one.

    I find it odd she’s still being held without charge. Either they have the goods or they don’t. Anyone know how long you can be held without charges in Italy?

  • credmond January 29, 2008 (3:15 pm)

    I believe one of the earlier reports said they could be held for up to a year based on the judge’s discretion.

  • misty January 29, 2008 (3:18 pm)

    Islewrite, Shame on you for passing judgment on someone who I assume you don’t even know — my gosh, she’s a college student and there are many responsible adults who may have had similar “priorities” when they were in school! This is a tragic story.
    JumboJim — I believe that one can be held in jail in Italy for up to a year while the investigation continues.

  • missaudreyhorne January 29, 2008 (3:19 pm)

    Oh, no, because good college students NEVER have boyfriends or experiment with recreational drugs. And obviously that makes her guilty. (of being an average college student)

  • Rosie January 29, 2008 (3:20 pm)

    Probably not as long as Guantanamo…and the food is much better I’m sure.

  • islewrite January 29, 2008 (3:35 pm)

    But you ARE judged by the way you conduct your life. That’s the point. Again, I’m not saying she’s guilty of murder. But–and it’s why I remind young people to be very careful about the images they post on MySpace, etc–people will form an opinion about you based on how you live your life and on the “image” that you put out there. Yeah, those images can be mitigated by people who know you personally, who can tell others, “Oh, she’s not really like that,” but it’s rare–in the public forum–that there will be people there to intercede on your behalf.

    So, bottom line: conduct yourself with honor and then you don’t have to worry as much if you inadvertently get caught up in a tragedy like this.

  • misty January 29, 2008 (3:57 pm)

    But again, islewrite, she’s a college student!! She’s young and many (myself included) are glad that not all things I did in college were caught on tape! And, you come across as judging her not based solely on the pics she chose to put on MySpace but on the fact that she had a boyfriend so quickly?! Jeez…….

  • goody January 29, 2008 (4:03 pm)

    I find it odd that the blog has been so silent on this very, very West Seattle story. I believe that college kids have all sorts of adventures, trysts, trials, try-outs, etc. Her written words really crossed some lines(the murder story)and the reality may be very, very unpleasant. Then again, that was just a story.
    Countries approach crimes in different ways. They can hold her, she is in their country under their jurisdiction. US law does not apply!

  • JumboJim January 29, 2008 (4:35 pm)


    We may be morally judged by society due to the way we live our life; this should have nothing to do with being judged innnocent or guilty in a court of law though, so it seems pointless (not to mention cynical) to discuss it in the public forums such as this.

  • k January 29, 2008 (4:37 pm)

    not sure the fact that her mom lives in west seattle makes this a “very, very West Seattle story”. the story is in italy. i am glad it hasn’t taken up space on this blog. the folks over at the slog have more than covered this. let’s leave it to their people to speculate.

  • WSB January 29, 2008 (5:05 pm)

    K’s point is why we haven’t spent a lot of time on this. We have been watching to see if there are any true WS angles such as, the mom speaks out (considering she still lives here), or if she returns home any time soon … looked for other angles early on but apparently Amanda didn’t even go to high school in WS … but otherwise we do agree it’s been more than adequately covered elsewhere, and while we do certainly cover some things that are covered elsewhere, we pride ourselves on the bulk of our coverage being stuff you DON’T find anywhere else, whether it’s an update on a local business, a community council meeting, or, a criminal-justice case in point, what just took up our past couple hours — we went back downtown to see how the defense testimony was going in the Dillard/Coxwell trial and much to our surprise, we walked into an empty courtroom because the jury had just gotten the case. Not another reporter in sight. Now THAT is a very, very West Seattle case … we wish we had figured out a way to sit in on the whole trial and report all the testimony to you, but at least we will be able to tell you how it all turns out.

  • Jan January 29, 2008 (5:16 pm)

    I would cringe if I was judged all my life by my behavior in college. And I think I turned out rather well. We should not be on this earth to judge others (well, maybe in a court of law, that’s different). We can only look inward and take care of ourselves the best way we can. Trying our best does not equate perfection…that’s for darned sure…but it is a good way to live.

  • Wes January 29, 2008 (5:26 pm)

    it’s ok islewrite, you are intitled to your opinion, just as the rest of us. Don’t let other peoples opinions who think your opinion is wrong push you away.

  • Meg January 29, 2008 (5:34 pm)

    Out of curiousity, does anyone know if there have been any funds set up to assist her mom with the financial woes of being abroad for so long. Guilty or not I feel like her mom deserves some support and htelp….

  • Jiggers January 29, 2008 (5:57 pm)


  • westello January 29, 2008 (5:58 pm)

    My husband is Italian and tells me that Italian law only allows a suspect to be held without bail if the prosecution has excellent evidence. It is likely that the police have presented some pretty good evidence to the panel of judges who make the decision. It doesn’t mean she is guilty; just that the evidence is strong. Also, Italians have a strong issue about laying blame on others. This young woman may have hurt herself by, at least in once version of her story, blaming her boss (who has now been released).

  • JRC January 29, 2008 (9:26 pm)

    Jiggers you could not be further from the truth on this one. I live within shouting distance (very low volume shouting distance) of where she grew up and her family still lives. They are good people. Amanda even spent a fair amount of time in our yard playing with my daughter and other neighbor kids. My daughter spent loads of time in their house playing.
    If Amanda is guilty of anything my guess is that she did a horrible job in chosing her friends in Italy.

  • Pelicans January 30, 2008 (12:14 am)

    Dear WSB,
    Personal Opinion Alert** I was very disheartened today after reading the articles on UW athletic players getting off scott-free, or almost so for crimes it was obvious to everyone they committed.

    If you don’t print this, I’ll understand, but the situation of the girl in Italy came immediately to mind. She may be innocent, or not, but I hope you catch my meaning and my outrage.

    Here it is:
    Too bad this girl wasn’t a male UW footbal star (prospective or othewise) or someone the football machine in this state thought was worth bailing out. If so, she’d be out enjoying life, immune from any consequences of her wayward actions (if she’s guilty at all).

    As it is, she is a college student in a foreign country, with no alumni/legal or legislative/civil rights backing to bail her out or bring her home. She may be guilty of nothing more than guilt by association, or, much more than what has been reported and conjectured upon by the world media. Who can tell right now? I hope for the best.

    Italy’s legal standards are much different than ours. What is upsetting me is not only her plight, but the recent articles in the Seattle Times that implicate the female head of UW sports, as well as Rick Neuheisel, the late Norm Maleng-King Co. prosecutor (whose staffer and would-be successor I voted for on the basis that Maleng appointed him), UW legal counsel, the Times and P.I. reporting staff and please, not, Coach Holmgren, in the covering up and dismissing of crimes ranging from rape, wife beating and numerous vicious assualts, to hit and run and many others. There are a wife-beater, almost proven rapists, highway hit and run artists and many more cruel and vicious criminals committing assualts against defenseless kids. Their scholarships are paid for by whom? The UDub apparently kept a lawyer onstaff full-time to defend its football team. What the H**?!!

    Do I want my tax money going to some place that covers up violence against not only Young Girls and Mothers, but the very people who are weak and defensless against these big, hulking violence-prone monsters they coddle and recruit at taxpayer expense to become thier “Star Athletes?”

    As it seems to be said in ‘C-Dub’s’ character, violence was “in his nature.” ‘Nuff said.

    I hope these coaches and public figures feel as ashamed of themselves as I feel supremely disappointed in them because of their actions and their innate lack of integrity and morals. In this matter, we all have the right to judge them.

    If what the Times has written is true they have prostituted themselves not only to the name of Victory, but to the UDub’s bottom line. Victory wouldn’t have been better, but it would have been, oh,… forget it. Neither one is worth a young girl’s virtue, a mother’s broken nose, arm or threatened life, and young man’s broken face, or a young student’s vision of a good and just world.

    Thank God my daughter and son are not enrolled at the UW.

    WSB, if you don’t print this, I’ll understand. I am just really p****d off and disillusioned.

    Thanks for listening.

  • WSMom January 30, 2008 (12:23 pm)

    Thank you Pelican, well said! Adding insult to injury is the former mayor of Everett offering $100,000 to fire the current UW football coach who sounds like a straight shooter (who knows what the truth is). It’s the “win no matter what” attitude that I’m ashamed of.

    I too worry that justice may not ever serve Amanda Knox. She apparently was making some poor lifestyle choices once she was separated from her family and friends by a few thousand miles. All I can think is “there but for the grace of God go I.” Our culture does not support our children making good choices with their sexuality and drinking, and I have no doubt that alchohol was a bigger part of this picture than hashish. Her story needs to be a cautionary tale for all of our young people.

  • Mikal January 30, 2008 (3:51 pm)

    My understanding from the Times is that Amanda Knox story has changed more than two times about that night. Usually when people change stories like that it implies some knowledge of what happened.

  • goody January 30, 2008 (4:06 pm)

    Is it true or not that Amanda lived in West Seattle but went to Seattle Prep? Anyone living anywhere can go there and the story has changed. Her rambling pre and post arrest letters, myspace content and other pieces are all circumstantional. Because her mother lives in West Seattle, it does have some closeness to the community.

  • Candace Dempsey January 31, 2008 (11:24 am)

    I’m a Seattle-based journalist and I’ve written five stories on the Meredith Kercher murder case. I’m always happy to talk to anyone about it.

    The more I know, the better my coverage will be. It is a confusing case and the police and courts are still sorting out the details.

    You can email me at

    Please feel free also to post on my blog.


  • Jabba the Hut February 1, 2008 (8:09 pm)

    Italy is a disfunctional place. Tax avoidance in all corners of society is so rampant it causes the government to miss financial targets set by the EU. The mob is ever prevalent and powerful. Prosecutors have been killed for trying to bring these criminals to justice. Italians even have trouble working out their trash collection (see Naples issues with garbage). I found Italy to be an overcrowded, overpriced sh**hole.

    Their legal system is obviously of the same caliber as the observations above. Contaminated crime scenes, police coercing interrogations, prosecutors rushing to judgment.

Sorry, comment time is over.