The Amanda Knox case is going under renewed scrutiny with the release of Netflix's new documentary, Amanda Knox, which features never-before-seen footage from the case and interviews with those involved, painting a more detailed picture of the Meredith Kercher murder trial than ever before. And while the documentary helps to clear up some lingering questions people have about the case, it doesn't answer everything, including the mystery around Knox's connection to Rudy Guede, the man currently serving time for Kercher's murder. Did Amanda Knox know Rudy Guede before he was arrested for Kercher's death? Well, it depends on who you ask.
The first people arrested in connection with Kercher's murder were Knox and her then-boyfriend, Raffaele Sollecito. Knox then named her boss, Patrick Lumumba, in a confession that she recanted hours later. Lumumba was soon cleared of any wrongdoing, but Knox and Sollecito remained under suspicion, despite what was later deemed a lack of physical evidence. There was physical evidence, however, that suggested a previously unknown person to the investigation — Guede — was present at the scene of the crime. His DNA and fingerprints were found at the murder scene, and when police tried to contact him, they found that he had fled Italy for Germany. Instead of this seemingly-unrelated new suspect clearing Knox and Sollecito of any suspicion, investigators instead folded him into a new, later dismissed theory that the media lapped up: that Knox had allegedly masterminded a sex game gone wrong involving Guede and Sollecito, with Kercher allegedly as the victim.
Now, for this theory to have made any sense at all, it's crucial that Knox and Guede would have had to have known each other — and that's where things get murky. Guede initially claimed that Knox was not there the night Kercher was murdered, and that an unknown man had killed her while Guede was in the bathroom. He later changed his story, claiming that he heard Knox and Kercher fighting (again, while he was in the bathroom) and that he allegedly saw Knox leave after Kercher had been killed. He later claimed that he first met Knox on Halloween, and that he had flirted with her at the bar where she worked. At one point, he claimed that he knew both Kercher and Knox and had visited their apartment multiple times. His stories about meeting and knowing Knox changed several times, but Knox has never publicly claimed to know Guiede prior to the murder.
As the documentary recounts, Guede sometimes played basketball at a court near Knox's apartment, but no one other than Guede claims that he ever visited the apartment prior to the murder. He did, however, reportedly befriend the men who lived at the apartment below Knox, and she allegedly came across him at least once briefly, according to one of those men, Giorgio Cocciaretto. It's also possible that Knox had seen Guede playing basketball or at the bar where she worked, since he was somewhat known around the neighborhood, but according to Knox in the documentary, she didn't know him personally and they certainly weren't friends. There's also no proof or testimony from anyone suggesting that Sollecito had ever met Guede before the murder trials. It may never be known for sure, though, what connections any of the trio truly had.