ROME—For anyone who has ever wanted to ask Amanda Knox a question or two, the opportunity has arrived. The Seattle native, who was twice convicted and twice acquitted of the 2007 murder of her British roommate Meredith Kercher, in Perugia, Italy, is launching an advice column.
The new feature, to be called “Ask Amanda Knox,” will appear in the news outlet Westside Seattle, which is owned by the family of her husband, Christopher Robinson. The announcement so close to the Nov. 1 anniversary of Kercher’s murder begs what might be a good first question for the new agony aunt: Why now?
The 31-year-old is in a good position to give advice on love-hate relationships. Last summer, Knox came to Italy to speak at a conference put on by Italy’s Innocence Project in which she both courted and criticized the media attention she invited by announcing the speaking engagement three months in advance. When she was met by hordes of cameras, she said she felt violated by the attention.
When she made her Instagram account public in 2017—with a photo shoot in which she was dressed as Little Red Riding Hood in the Black Forest—she quickly grew defensive that people found it peculiar and chastised many in the media for pointing out details, such as that her cat is named Scream.
Knox is also well-positioned to give advice on the tricky business of wedding planning. After she returned to Seattle last summer, she and Robinson launched a GoFundMe page to help raise funds for their space-themed wedding to be held next year—without divulging that the two had married in 2018.
Knox can certainly give her readers advice on fighting for justice. Earlier this year, the European Court of Human Rights ruled that Knox’s rights were violated during her initial interrogations by not providing a lawyer or neutral interpreter, but ruled that she was not physically abused, as she suggested when she asked the court to award her $3 million in damages. The European court instead ruled that Italy should pay her $11,000 in damages and $9,000 for court costs and expenses.
Dealing with online etiquette is also something she has experience with. Late last week, she got into an online spat with Lady Gaga, who had tweeted that “Fame is a prison,” to which Knox retorted: “I hear you, but… prison is prison.” Touché!
Knox has understandably struggled with her infamy since being released after spending four years in prison when her guilty verdict for Kercher’s murder was overturned on appeal in 2011. She and her erstwhile boyfriend Raffaele Sollecito were both found guilty of the murder in 2009, a year after Rudy Guede was convicted in a fast-track trial for his involvement.
A second appellate court reinstated Knox and Sollecito’s convictions in 2013, but then Italy’s supreme court acquitted them definitively in 2015. Guede will be released from prison next year after serving his sentence. His definitive court ruling still lists him as one of three killers.
Knox remains convicted of defamation for accusing her then-boss Patrick Lumumba of Kercher’s murder after the young woman’s body was found in the apartment the two women shared. One question for the new agony columnist might well be why she hasn’t yet paid him damages the court awarded him for that charge.
News of the advice column coming so close to the anniversary of Kercher’s death is either an intentional way for Knox to face the tragedy that defines her head-on, or an insensitive lapse in memory. The Kercher family, who continue to struggle with accepting the final outcome of their daughter’s murder case, recently commented that every time Knox makes the headlines, it opens the wound all over again. They remain convinced that Knox and Sollecito were involved in their daughter’s heinous murder.
In announcing the new column, Westside Seattle addressed the inevitable scrutiny. “Amanda Knox spent four years in an Italian prison for a murder she didn’t commit and it’s given her a unique perspective on life,” the editors wrote. “Now fully exonerated, this bestselling author and advocate for criminal justice reform offers her insights, such as they are, to reader questions about life, love, suffering, and meaning.”
That post has since been removed from the site.
Editor’s note: Barbie Latza Nadeau is the author of Angel Face: Sex, Murder and the Inside Story of Amanda Knox, which was adapted for film in 2014.