Aida Colantone's Testimony (English)
Summary of Aida Colantone's Testimony
- A police interpreter for 22 years Aida Colantone was away from Perugia for the holiday when she found out about the murder of an English girl. Knowing that her services would be needed she rushed back.
- Colantone testified about the trip to the cottage on November 4th. The three roommates were asked to come to the cottage to identify if any of the knives were missing and there was an incident with Amanda Knox. Amanda Knox started to cry. She was attended to by the two medical examiners that were also at the cottage.
- Colantone also testified that before leaving for the cottage she had been instructed to put Amanda Knox and Raffaele Sollecito in a room that had been prepared so that the police could listen to what they talked about. Colantone was not allowed to discuss the specific content. Colantone was allowed to say that Amanda Knox and Raffaele Sollecito were talking in low tones so that they would not be heard and that Amanda Knox was worried.
- Colantone also discussed that she participated in roughly 25 intercepted jail house conversations between Amanda Knox and her family. Colantone was not allowed to go into details about the content but explained that on days when Amanda Knox was allowed visitation Colantone would go to the prison and sit in a room with headphones on. She would listen and if anything interesting was said she would translate it.
- Colantone was restricted on what she could state about the contents of the prison intercepts but she was allowed to say that on both November 10th and November 13th Amanda Knox expressed regret for falsely accusing Patrick Lumumba. At that point Patrick Lumumba was still a suspect and in custody. Eventually a foreign professor who was in the Perugia the night of the murder verified Lumumba's was at Le Chic all night.
- Colantone also participated in the translation of the roughly 600 letters Amanda Knox wrote.
- The E-mail Amanda Knox wrote to a group of people early in the morning of November 4th was also discussed. The E-mail was obtained after a former employer of Amanda Knox who was a recipient of the e-mail contacted Seattle police. Seattle police contacted the Perugia police and the e-mail was forwarded. Colantone did not translate the e-mail but she typed up the translation as Anna Donnino translated. Colantone testified that it was strange that Amanda Knox would go home on November 4th and write an e-mail at 3:25am. The murder had been discovered November 2nd and most of Meredith's friends were at the police station until dawn of November 3rd. On November 3rd Amanda Knox was at the police station until late as well. Colantone commented that Knox must have been exhausted so that she went home and wrote an e-mail at 3am was weird.
- The defense focused on Aida Colantone using discretion on what to translate. This is a line of questioning that was advanced against all the interpreters. The defense implication that since the interpreters were using their own judgement on what was relevant to the police that they were not fulfilling their role as interpreters and translators. Colantone explained that the volume of material made translating everything impossible and used the example of Amanda Knox and Raffaele Sollecito ordering a pizza at the police station as an example of material that had no relevance to the investigation.
- The judge asked Aida Colantone if the injury to Amanda Knox's neck was present on November 4th and she confirms that it was. Here is a preliminary extract from the translation of her testimony with regard to the scratch: I realized that this girl was really worn out, exhausted, she was tired because I found her leaning on the chair with her head tilted towards the wall, white-faced with eyes closed, white, and I was greatly affected by the pallor of her face, and I realized that this girl was not feeling well. Precisely at that moment, besides the pallor of the face and neck, I noticed a red mark on her neck that has stayed printed in my mind and to which I did not attach any importance because obviously I was struck by her pallor, by this red mark, I realized that the girl was not feeling well, I approached her and asked: "Amanda how are you? Are you OK?" At that point she recovered and recomposed herself and replied to me: ”Yes, I haven’t slept, I haven’t eaten, this morning my period started and I’m exhausted."
Aida Colantone's Testimony
Key to abbreviations GM Giuliano Mignini Prosecutor Pubblico Ministero AC Aida Colantone Witness being questioned Interpreter/translator GCM Giancarlo Massei Judge Presidente GB Giulia Bongiorno Sollecito defense lawyer Avvocato CDV Carlo Dalla Vedova Knox defense lawyer Avvocato LG Luciano Ghirga Knox defense lawyer Avvocato CP Carlo Pacelli Lumumba civil lawyer Avvocato MC Manuela Comodi Prosecutor Pubblico Ministero
N.B.: This translation of witness testimony into English from Italian is subject to revision during subsequent phases of proofreading, and thus should be considered as an intermediate rather than a final version. It is a free translation of the Italian original on which it is based and is being provided at this time for the convenience of interested parties who do not read Italian. Although every effort has been made to ensure its accuracy, in the event of a discrepancy between it and the Italian original, the latter shall be considered as accurate and the English‐language translation as erroneous.
The witness, admonished pursuant to Article 497 of the Criminal Procedure Code, reads the oath.
General information: Colantone Aida Giustina, born February 27, 1956 at Pontecorvo (Frosinone). I have been working as a proofreader /translator/ interpreter at the Perugia police station since 1987. Before that I was working in Siena and then my service at the Ministry of the Interior as an interpreter - translator started 22 years ago. I live in Magione at Piazza Simoncini 19.
Civil Party Counsel Carlo Pacelli
It is recognized that the witness is shown the document number three of the civil party dossier.
Defence Counsel Carlo Dalla Vedova
It is recognized that the witness proceeds to read in English with translation into Italian of the first paragraph of the referred letter.
Defence Counsel Luciano Ghirga
Defence Counsel Giulia Bongiorno
It is recognized that the verbatim report, to which reference has been made several times, is acquired with the consensus of all parties.
Public Prosecutor Manuela Comodi
The hearing is suspended.