Mysterious murder of American woman grips Italy


Ashley Olsen, in an image posted to her Instagram page

Ashley Olsen on Instagram via WTEV-TV

ROME -- Italy has been gripped once again by a murder case involving a young American woman, and the parallels to the drawn-out legal drama of Amanda Knox are plain to see.

CBS News correspondent Allen Pizzey says Ashley Olsen's body was found Saturday when her boyfriend and landlady entered her apartment. Her boyfriend asked the landlady to use her keys as he had not heard from the 35-year-old Florida native for three days.

American Ashley Olsen killed in Florence 00:33

According to local reports she was found naked, with scratch and bruise marks on her neck, but there was no initial evidence of a sexual assault.

Her last post on social media included a photo of graffiti that reads, "kiss me hard before you go," but if it holds a message, it's unclear to say the least.

In at least two Instagram posts from Italy on her account, Olsen uses the hashtag "#creeper," although it's not clear to what she is referring to exactly.

What is known about the case so far, according to Italian police, makes it a mystery worthy of a novel.

Olsen was last seen Thursday night at a club with a female friend. She was out until dawn.

Someone was on her computer until lunchtime on Friday -- the day she is believed to have been killed.

There was no sign of forced entry into the apartment. Black restraints were found near her body.

There are no suspects so far.

Olsen and her artist boyfriend had argued, but police have said he has an alibi.

She moved to Florence two years ago, worked arranging art events and as a part time baby sitter and was often seen in the neighbourhood where she lived walking her beloved beagle, Scout. He was in the apartment when the body was found.

"She was very adventurous, she loved Italy," said Staci Kelly, who had been friends with Olsen for the last 13 years. "Whoever did this, I just hope they get what's coming to 'em."

The case is already being compared to the high-profile murder case of Amanda Knox, who was accused -- and then eventually acquitted -- of killing British student Meredith Kercher.

That case dragged on for more than four years. This time, the police have vowed to pull out all the stops.

They've taken possession of Ashley's computer and cell phone and are going through surveillance video of the area around the murder scene.