Amanda Knox was acquitted of the murder of her British roommate, Meridith Kercher, in 2011, but Italy’s highest court announced on Tuesday that the case will be sent back to be reheard at an appeals court in Florence, reports The New York Times. Here’s what you need to know about the accused murderer and her retrial.
1. Italy’s Highest Court Overturned a Previous Acquittal of Amanda Knox
Italy’s highest court ruled on Tuesday that the previous acquittal of Amanda Knox should be overturned and that the accused murderer should be retried. The case against and her and her former boyfriend, Raffaele Sollecito, will be reheard at an appeals court in Florence.
“We are still convinced that they are the co-authors of Meredith’s homicide,” Perugia prosecutor Giovanni Galati said, according to the Italian news agency ANSA.
2. Knox and Her Boyfriend Were Accused of Murdering Her Roommate, Meredith Kercher, in 2007
Knox and her former boyfriend were accused of murdering her roommate, Meredith Kercher, in 2009 after her body was found dead in her bedroom with her throat slit open in 2007. Knox and Kercher were both exchange students at the University of Perugia in Italy and shared a four-bedroom apartment in a house in Perugia. Kercher was murdered just two months after she arrived in Italy to study at the University.
3. Prosecutors Alleged Kercher Was Murdered in a Drug-Fueled Sexual Assault
Prosecutors proposed that Kercher was murdered by Knox and Sollecito in a drug-fueled sexual assault. They alleged that the murder was the result of a Satanic ritual after Kercher refused to take part in an orgy. Knox and Sollecito was also accused of murdering Kercher in a drug-fueled rage after smoking marijuana.
4. She Was Originally Sentenced to 26 Years in Prison
Knox and Sollecito denied the accusations, but were convicted of the murder of Kercher in 2009. Sollecito was sentenced to 25 years and Knox 26 years; Knox received an extra year for calumny after falsely accusing another man of the murder.
5. A Third Man Was Sentenced to 16 Years
A third man, Rudy Guede from the Ivory Coast, was convicted of the murder in a separate trial and is currently serving a 16-year jail sentence. Kercher’s family doesn’t believe that Guede acted alone.
6. Amanda Knox Was Acquitted by Perugia a Year and a Half Ago
After four years in prison, both Knox and Sollecito were acquitted of the murder in October 2011 and released from jail.
7. She Currently Studies at the University of Washington
Upon her release, Knox moved back to her hometown in Seattle and currently studies creative writing at the University of Washington.
8. A Book Written by Knox is Expected to be Published on April 30
HarperCollins gave Knox a $4 million advance to write a memoir about her imprisonment. Her book is called Waiting to be Heard and it is expected to be published on April 30. On the same day, she is scheduled to sit down with Diane Sawyer for her first interview since her release from prison.
9. Kercher’s Family Says There Are Still Questions Unanswered
A murder weapon was never found, DNA tests were faulty and a motive was never determined for Knox and Sollecito to kill Kercher. Kercher’s family says that there are still many questions that were left unanswered and hope that the retrial will answer those questions.
“There are lots of questions without answers and that’s why we are looking for the truth,” Kercher’s sister, Stephanie, said. “We miss Meredith terribly and nothing will bring her back. We hope that the supreme court hearing will help to find some answers to what happened that night.Meredith will never be forgotten but it’s also important not to forget what happened, a beautiful young girl, my little sister, taken away from us too early in a brutal manner, with many aspects to still clarify.”
10. The Trial is Likely to Take Place in Absentia
The trial is likely to take place in absentia as the U.S. is unlikely to extradite Knox. The accused said that the decision was “painful,” but she is confident in her innocence.
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