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16 April 2010

fame monsters

crime fiction is a genre that i like to read because i've a passion for everything that is real, and the way crime authors craft their stories answer my needs. they really do talk a lot about the flaws of the human characters, both in the good and bad people. and a lot of times, you see a lot of good in the bad and viceversa. i'm not so interested in people being good or right -the old notion of the hero- but somebody who overcomes the flaws in themselves. this kind of drama offers the keys to figure out to deal with the evil, how it might play out for us if we were that person killing or robbing.

in the last case of italian unsolved crimes, the murder of chiara poggi in garlasco, i feel the victim's vulnerability. she could be any of us, a girl who probably knew her assassin, since she was found dead with her pj on, so she had let him/her in. she had a petite body and could have succumbed after the first couple of hits, but autopsy showed she was hit 15 times, which means she fought for survival and probably collided with this other person, since they found traces of hair in her hands. maybe they talked about something upsetting, which ended up in a fight. the killer had time to clean up his traces, even to move the body somewhere else before running away. and he was never found, neither the object he used for hitting her.

since this homicide took place in august 2007, all suspicions were on chiara's boyfriend of 4 years, alberto. he was the one who found her dead but who insisted he was innocent, even if the things he reported the police were quite controversial. he said he had gone to check if chiara was okay because that morning she hadn't answered his calls, but his shoes were clean after stepping in a room covered in blood. he described her like looking pale, but her face was invisible under blood and hair. he said he had worked at his thesis on his computer for the whole morning, but analysts showed he had only logged on his computer for three minutes. he said that he had passed over a tall fence in her garden, but he had apparently left no traces on it. he had declared he had gone check chiara by car, but traces of chiara's blood were found on the pedals of his bike.

not even the 40 images and a few video of child porn pedophilia, which put forward the hypothesis of chiara being killed because she found them out, were enough to sentence this guy to 30 years in prison, like it was hoped. the judges acquitted him for lack of evidence this january.

this guy seems the cold, controlled type. after he found chiara lying in blood, he went to the local police and dialled 118 from there, referring to the victim  as A person, not HIS girlfriend, with no trace of emotion in his voice, without begging the ambulance to hurry up, like you expect people to do when they occur in such a terrible circumstance. as for the porn files, he said he doesn't remember how they ended up in his computer, that they probably were there because he happened to fall on them. i believe one thing is viewing a few images out of curiosity, another is having those files meticously saved on your pc. anyway, i don't know.  razor seems to be cutting any alternative. the only reassuring indice in favour of alberto is that the person who shared chiara's last hour of life was a smoker, and alberto doesn't smoke. police found traces of nicotine on chiara's hair.

alberto is a free man now, he's got a new girlfriend and is trying to live his wasted life again, like he said on tv last week. he also would like to meet chiara's parents, though this devastated couple totally refuses. they're convinced he's guilty, as well as the rest of sentimental italy.

this is the story as it goes, which is terrible in all its brutality and which proves that the real world is ambiguous, we may never know waht happens. but it's infamous garlasco community that shocks even more. cousins who edit a photo with chiara, locals who accept to broadcast just to get publicity for their shops, acquaintances or neighbours who suddenly become best friends of chiara and alberto. everyone trying to get notoriety out of drama. there shouldn't be so many crime coverages, they don't serve any constructive purpose, and don't do anything to bring closure to the situation.

photoshop of chiara with her aspiring showgirl cousins, via la stampa

what's going wrong in our world? i understand that crime assigns blame, and it's not us, so we follow it to try to figure out. but what about the fame out of it? it's not a matter of the zebra's interest in how the lion kills, you know. it's not wanting to hope that maybe the better angels of nature will prevail and that society will stop the evil from happening. it's forgetting of the victim, showing the impact of the crime on the community without grief and suffering. so far, no angels prevailed, just one stolen life. and that's something no correct verdict will ever bring back :(


  1. Criminal/investigative books, TV shows, documentaries and even movies are really appealing, but they always leave an unease - and sometimes angry - feeling within, as I realize we are surrounded by mean souls. It is unsettling, isn't it? and deeply sad.

  2. i agree, claudia, but as for me, i deeply want to know more about thsoe mean souls. i've always loved psychology and where it may lead!


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