Former murder suspect Amanda Knox, who the U.K. press nicknamed “Foxy Knoxy,” has revealed details in a candid new essay about a lesbian who pursued her while she was in prison.
In the article, which was published as part of Broadly.vice.com’s “Love Is a Hoax” series, Knox explores the complexity and intensity of female relationships that begin behind bars.
Knox, 29, spent almost four years in prison in Perugia, Italy, after being convicted of the 2007 murder of her roommate Meredith Kercher along with her then-boyfriend Rafaelle Sollecito.
Knox said she had been incarcerated for three years when she met a woman she calls “Leny,” a drug dealer from a small town.
“I noticed her immediately: petite, with a paunchy belly and short, dark hair. I made Leny for the kind of prisoner who’d only lash out if cornered — so not a threat to me,” Knox wrote.
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She explained that she became “cautiously friendly” with Leny, and they sometimes chatted over coffee or played chess.
“When Leny got a janitorial job, she loitered outside my cell for a sip of espresso and a chat whenever she was on break,” Knox wrote. “Leny didn’t have anyone else, so she looked forward to our time together.”
“She told me she was a lesbian, and I told her I was straight,” Knox explained.
Then Knox said that Leny crossed the line by trying to hold Knox’s hand. “’I’ve changed women before,’ she’d tell me. ‘I can do things to you that no man can,’” Knox recalled. “I felt objectified and I’d get annoyed. ‘You can’t change me,’ I’d respond.”
Leny then kissed her, which Knox said made her feel angry because she already had to deal with regular strip-searches and sexual harassment by male prison guards. “As a prisoner, Leny should have understood that, but unlike me, Leny was serving a short stint, and didn’t feel as acutely as I did the loss of privacy, dignity, and autonomy,” Knox wrote.
Knox was originally sentenced to 26 years in prison, but she and Sollecito were acquitted.
After returning to the U.S., a higher court in Italy reversed the acquittal in 2013, sentencing her again to prison — but she was cleared again of the murder in 2015.
Since returning to the States, Knox has worked as a freelance writer.
Main photo: Amanda Knox [ABC News/screenshot]