Amanda Knox has posted a photograph of herself hanging precariously from a cliff edge as she travels to Italy for the first time since she was convicted, then acquitted, of the murder of Meredith Kercher.
Knox, 31, said she was feeling “frayed” as she prepares to fly from her home in Seattle to Italy, where she spent four years in prison.
Due to arrive on Thursday, she will on Saturday address a conference on miscarriages of justice and “trial by media”, being held in the northern city of Modena.
The lawyer for the family of Ms Kercher, who was murdered in the Umbrian town of Perugia in 2007 at the age of 21, has called Knox’s return visit “inappropriate”.
Knox posted a photo on her Instagram account showing her giving a mock scream and pretending to hang by her fingernails from a cliff called Rattlesnake Ledge in her home state of Washington.
Next to the photo she wrote: “Three days until I return to Italy for the first time since leaving prison. Feeling frayed, so I made my own inspirational workplace poster. ‘Hang in there!’ Just imagine I'm a kitten.”
In an essay published online on Wednesday, entitled Your Content, My Life, Knox wrote: “I’m about to return to Italy for the first time since I was released from prison and fled the country in a high-speed chase, paparazzi literally ramming the back of my stepdad’s rental car.”
During her murder trial she had been painted by prosecutors as “a sex-crazed femme fatale.”
She said she was “polishing up the speech I’m about to give to a potentially hostile audience in Italy.”
She also posted a photo of herself and her boyfriend, Christopher Robinson, preparing to travel from the US to Italy.
On Twitter, Mr Robinson wrote: “Last time I was in Italy, I took a train to Florence, blew my money on a €100 bottle of Barolo which I drank by myself while writing a bad short story. This time with @amandaknox is going to be, shall we say…different.”
The couple also posted a selfie of themselves and wrote: “Here we go, wish us buon viaggio.”
It is not the first time that Knox has posted provocative and sometimes bizarre photos of herself.
Two years ago, she dressed up as Little Red Riding Hood, cringing in fear from a man dressed as the Big Bad Wolf. The photos were taken in the Black Forest in Germany.
Knox and her then Italian boyfriend, Raffaele Sollecito, were accused of sexually assaulting and killing Miss Kercher, from Surrey.
They were convicted on both charges in 2009 but had their convictions thrown out on appeal in 2011.
Knox immediately left Italy and has not set foot on Italian soil since.
The original convictions were upheld in 2014 before being definitively overturned by the Supreme Court in Rome in 2015.
Her decision to come back to Italy has been criticised by the Kercher family’s lawyer.
“I think it is inappropriate and uncalled for,” Francesco Maresca told The Telegraph last month.
“This young woman should accept the verdict that she received, which was extremely positive for her, and stop embarking on initiatives which seem designed to garner publicity and attention.”
Knox has been invited to Modena by an NGO called the Italy Innocence Project, which campaigns on wrongful convictions and judicial errors.
"We wanted to invite her because we believe that she is an icon of trial by mass media," said Guido Sola, one of the organisers of the event.
The only person to have been convicted for the murder is Rudy Guede, a petty criminal and drug dealer born in the Ivory Coast who had been adopted by an Italian family in Perugia. He is serving a 16-year sentence.