Amanda Knox: 'I haven't been allowed to grieve' for roommate

Amanda Knox, who spent nearly four years in an Italian prison after being convicted of murdering her British roommate, says she hopes her roommate's parents read her book and give her permission to visit their daughter's grave. She spoke with Anna Maria Tremonti on CBC's The Current.

Hopes to visit grave of murdered British exchange student

Amanda Knox has just released her book Waiting to be Heard: A Memoir. She spoke with The Current's Anna Maria Tremonti about her ordeal. (Elaine Thompson/Associated Press)

Amanda Knox, who spent nearly four years in an Italian prison after being convicted of murdering her British roommate, says she hopes the slain woman's parents read her book and give her permission to visit their daughter's grave.

"I haven't been allowed to grieve. I want so much to pay my respects to her, to her grave," said Knox, in an interview with Anna Maria Tremonti on CBC's The Current.

"I want permission from her family and that's the main reason why I really want them to read my book, and I know that they've said that they are not wanting to and I understand their grief," said Knox, who has just released her book Waiting to be Heard: A Memoir by Amanda Knox. "That's the main reason why I haven't put myself out there and walked up to their front door. I don't want to disturb that. I know that they are going through the worst thing."

"I just hope that they'll take me into consideration when they search for the truth about what happened."

Knox, who lives in Seattle where she is studying at the University of Washington, was acquitted on appeal in 2011 of the murder of Meredith Kercher, a 21-year-old British exchange student. But in March, Italy's highest criminal court ordered a new trial even though Knox cannot be forced to return for it.

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Knox, 25, said she was shocked by the top court's verdict.

"The only way that I can describe it is to say that I felt like I had been crawling through a field of barbed wire this entire time  but I found an end or at least what I thought was an end and it turned out to be only the horizon and I know it will be just as hard to crawl through the next part."

"To this day, I'm waiting to understand the motivation and that will greatly determine how I'm going to have to live the next years and what I'm going to have to face," she told Tremonti.

Doesn't blame Italian justice system

But Knox said she doesn't blame the Italian justice system for her ordeal, instead focusing on over zealous prosecutors.

"I was treated very specifically due to a prosecution, and it's the prosecution that must  be made to answer for the way that I  was treated. I still have faith in the Italian justice system. I am still there, I am still going through it."

Italian prosecutors have said Knox, who was an exchange student studying in Perugia, Italy, and her then boyfriend Raffaele Sollecito killed Kercher in a drug-fuelled sex assault involving a third man.

They maintained that the murder weapon was a large knife taken from Sollecito's house. Prosecutors said the knife matched the wounds on Kercher's body and had traces of Kercher's DNA on the blade and Knox's DNA on the handle.

Anna Maria Tremonti of CBC's The Current spoke with Amanda Knox about her book Waiting to be Heard: A Memoir by Amanda Knox. (CBC)

However, Knox's defenders said she was innocent and was forced to say things she didn't mean during a lengthy police interrogation. And they said bumbling Italian police contaminated the crime scene, producing flawed DNA evidence.

An Ivory Coast man, Rudy Guede, was convicted of the 2007 slaying in a separate proceeding and is serving a 16-year sentence. Knox and Sollecito were also initially convicted of the murder and given long prison sentences, but were then acquitted on appeal and released in 2011.

Some observers raised questions about Knox for her reaction following the death of her roommate, accusing Knox of being unfeeling and uncaring and more interested in her boyfriend.

"When I cried, I cried when I was alone," she said. "When I was in the police office I was trying to hold it together so I could answer questions. In the meantime, I was pacing, I was angry, I was swearing."

She said physical interaction that anyone may have seen between her and her boyfriend were just expressions of comfort, and that Sollecito had kissed her to show he was there for her.

"I reacted differently than the others and I reacted in a way that wasn't classically Italian, but I reacted to what happened and I was overwhelmed by the reality of the situation."

Police didn't accept answers

She said at one point, when she was interrogated by police, their demeanour became very aggressive, asking her the same questions and not accepting her answers.

"They told me I was wrong, they told me that I wasn't remembering correctly, that I had to tell them the truth. Over all those hours, I was called a liar. I was told I had amnesia, that I had seen who the murderer was, I had seen the murder."

She said she believed the prosecution pursued her because they "had a bad vibe" about her and they didn't want to let that go, despite evidence pointing to Guede.

"In my opinion, they were projecting their own ideas about female decadence upon me," Knox said. "I very much believe that they thought they knew who I was before they knew me. They never really gave me a chance. They decided to make me a character and they held onto that. And whether or not they believe it, I think they've convinced themselves of it and were unwilling to let go."

With files from The Associated Press