December 4th, 2009
09:48 PM ET

Evening Buzz: Amanda Knox Guilty of Murder

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/CRIME/12/04/italy.knox.trial/t1larg.knox.bars.gi.jpg caption="Amanda Knox is driven into court at midnight in Perugia, Italy, to hear the verdict in her murder trial." width=300 height=169]

Maureen Miller
AC360° Writer

American Amanda Knox is facing 26 years in an Italian prison after a jury convicted her of murdering her roommate Meredith Kercher, while they were exchange students in the city of Perugia in 2007. Knox's Italian ex-boyfriend was also convicted. Raffaele Sollecito was sentenced to 25 years.

The two were convicted of all charges, except theft. They must pay 5 million euros to the victim's family. Knox must also pay 40,000 euros to a man who she falsely accused of the killing.

When the judge read the jury's verdict, Knox started to weep and said "No, no."

In a written statement, Knox's parents said they were "extremely disappointed" in the verdict.

"While we always knew this was a possibility, we find it difficult to accept this verdict when we know that she is innocent, and that the prosecution has failed to explain why there is no evidence of Amanda in the room where Meredith was so horribly and tragically murdered," they said.

"It appears clear to us that the attacks on Amanda's character in much of the media and by the prosecution had a significant impact on the judges and jurors and apparently overshadowed the lack of evidence in the prosecution's case against her."

Prosecutors said Kercher died during a sex game in which Knox taunted her while Sollecito and an acquaintance Rudy Guede sexually assaulted her. Guede was convicted in a separate trial and is appealing.

Tonight on 360°, you'll hear from Knox's aunt.

"They [the jury/the italian legal system] screwed up. They made a huge mistake. People are cheering about it now. I'm disgusted by that. I'm absolutely disgusted my family had to come out of that courtroom and hear people cheering Amanda has been convicted of something she had nothing to do with it," said Janet Huff on CNN's Campbell Brown show.

"What upsets me most about this is, i guess you can't change an entire country's way of justice and their court system, but the fact their jurors are not sequestered, they are allowed to go home, talk to their friends, reads the newspapers and go online, read whatever they want and believe it or not that does affect their decision-making process," she added.

Do you agree with the verdict? Share your thoughts below.

Join us for this story and much more starting at 10 p.m. ET on CNN. See you then!

Filed under: Maureen Miller • The Buzz
soundoff (78 Responses)
  1. Rita San Jose, Ca.

    I am so sorry about this verdict, and as far as I understood there was no forensic evidence tying amanda to where the killing took place. I am so sad for her sisters and father who thought he was doing the right thing by helping his daughter go abroad. If you are not devistated by this verdict you have never been a parent. very very very sad. My prayers are with your precious family.

    December 5, 2009 at 3:31 am |
  2. yvonne

    I don't understand how 3 people are accused, convicted in a court of law,and all 3 people are found guilty in the murder and death of 1 person. Common Sense tells me that in reality only 1 person committed the actual murder. Yet we now have 3 people found guilty and sentenced for the same crime. Hopefully the media can shed some light on this.Can you imagine 3 people holding a knife, all at the same time and trying to slice a boiled egg. It's not possible. I don't believe for a second that Amanda is guilty.

    December 5, 2009 at 3:13 am |
  3. Anna

    So, what are the alternative theories of who murdered Meredith? She was murdered, obviously, so is there any other theory? Blood evidence, DNA, motive, and opportunity all seem pretty cut and dried (no pun intended). Has there been any alternative theory established–or is it the standard red-haired/cloaked/deviant stranger narrative? What are the alternative theories? I don't read anything other than "Knox claims she didn't do it" and "she was set-up by Italian authorities." Really? Then, what actually happened. What's the deal with the DNA on the knife? I'm very confused as to other theories are about how the roommate was murdered–and so brutally. Why was Meredith murdered, according to, well, anyone.

    December 5, 2009 at 3:06 am |
  4. Enid D

    The police work is shoddy (is anyone who has been to Italy and witnessed firsthand the comically insouciant incompetence of their bureaucrats surprised?) (and back down, I'm Italian American); the entire trial is tainted by the media and the jury unbelievably unsequestered.

    To whoever above deemed it "living dangerously" to have sex and do drugs (marijuana? please, there could not be a less dangerous narcotic), I can only imagine you're 80 years old and completely out of touch. People have sex. She is an adult.

    Not to mention, all these accusations of a "violent drug-fueled sex game" are absurd if the drug in question is indeed weed. Stoned people become the opposite of violent and aggressive–mostly, they eat and fall asleep.

    To Miss "let's not forget the victim," don't be ridiculous! Lamenting an innocent girl sentenced to prison is not incompatible with empathy for the victim's family's loss.

    She has no history of violence. She was tried and crucified in the media. Poor girl.

    December 5, 2009 at 2:47 am |
  5. Lisa

    This seems like a repeat of the Eric Volz story...different country, same fight. My thoughts and prayers are with the families involved. Very, very sad.

    December 5, 2009 at 2:32 am |
  6. Tina

    As an american, I will be the first to admit that the american justice system is far from perfect. However the statement you made about the U.S media not showing coverage of the reaction of the victims family and the statement that Amanda Knox confessed to this murder is COMPLETELY FALSE. This girl didn't stand a chance at a fair trial. She was a forigner that was was demonized by the Italian, British, and the U.S media from the very start. My heart goes out to the Kercher family. I have also lost a loved one due to a violent crime, but you speak as if this verdict was a fair one because Amanda Knox is an American, and for this reason she should spend the next 26 years in prison, regardless of the lack of physical evidence against her.

    December 5, 2009 at 2:15 am |
  7. Shari

    I will never go to Italy. Its legal system is barbaric. Hearing that members of the jury and other court officials slept during times while Amanda's defense team presented its case proves that Amanda was going to be convicted all along. Amanda and Raffaelle are being robbed of their youth for a crime that evidence shows they did not commit. This is a sad day in history.

    December 5, 2009 at 2:14 am |
  8. Chris

    Time for a good old fashioned special ops extraction, Ross Perot style. Get that girl out of American hating Italy and back home to the good old US of A.

    December 5, 2009 at 2:14 am |
  9. Nate

    This is just another sad wrongful conviction in the world, nothing more.

    December 5, 2009 at 2:04 am |
  10. doug


    December 5, 2009 at 1:54 am |
  11. Julie

    Praying for Merideth's family. Praying for Amanda & her family. Praying for Raffaele and his family. It would be my wish, if Amanda loses the appeal, she would be allowed to serve her sentence in the USA.
    Sad, sad for all.

    December 5, 2009 at 1:49 am |
  12. Steve Austin

    If she were innocent, how can you explain her bizarre behavior? Innocent people don't act that way, falsely accuse others, and change their story.

    The jury got it right.

    Her family will continue to proclaim her innocents, but they are naturally biased and in denial. The facts in this case paint a very different picture.

    Her aunt can make all of the excuses she wants. Until she accepts the facts, what more can you expect beyond emotional pleas and attacks on the Italian legal system?

    December 5, 2009 at 1:48 am |
  13. Joe

    What makes people think Amanda Knox is an Angel and what sort of punishment by the way would the US legal system have meted out to her? In a way she was lucky to have killed in Europe and she(Amanda) mistakenly thought Uncle Sam will rush to her aid with guns, bombs and sanctions to free her from her sins. I feel sorry for her but Justice has surely been served. Hypocrites suck!

    December 5, 2009 at 1:44 am |
  14. Vera

    Well, said, Wendy.

    December 5, 2009 at 1:39 am |
  15. Charles

    Most likely she is guilty.
    She doesn't look very sincere.
    Besides, why change your story if there is nothing to hide and they said that she used drugs and alcohol big time.
    She had defendants that could not proof otherwise.
    Anyway let's just hope that justice is done for the involved.

    December 5, 2009 at 1:36 am |
  16. Skip

    This is a travesty of justice. The Italian prosecutor is corrupt. Citizens from Seattle(Washington State) will not tolerate the harsh labels that the Italian media has forced upon our diverse and honorable way of life. Amanda Knox will be freed and the truth will prevail. The Italians should reconsider their policework and pay closer attention to forensic evidence. I would bet that the language barrier played a large part in the confusion and chaos in the few short days and subsequent interviews after the tragic end to Kercher's life. Amanda Knox never had a fair trial fro the beginning. FREE OUR HUSKY!

    Skip H,
    Tacoma, Washington.

    December 5, 2009 at 1:22 am |
  17. Karin Knutson

    I am sick for Amanda and her family. I am disturbed that Amanda mishandled herself after the tragic death of her roommate. It is also an indicator of people at this age bracket – since I have four in their earlier twenties I noticed that they laugh at the most bizarre things...what is happening to our society?

    This prosecutor's career can not be the reason of a young girl spending her prime years in prison.

    I will not be allowing my daughter to do a study abroad in her college years.

    My heart goes out to the parents – of the young student murdered and the accused.

    December 5, 2009 at 1:22 am |
  18. joe

    In court here in the god old US of A defendants are convicted every day with the very same evidence and arguments from trial attorneys concerning lack of DNA, shoddy police work and other factors alleged in this case. The problem is that they do not have the right look; the right demeanor; and the correct family image. Are they any less guilty? What happens if she was guilty?

    I remember a case where family members argued that the guy could not be guilty because he was a law student, he was good looking, and that everyone loved him. His name was Ted Bundy. In court it was alleged that people were asleep during the case and yet as a veteran trial attorney i see the same thing every day in the US. The fact that she is a lovely girl seems to be the reason the press seems to give her the benefit of the doubt. Cartwheeling in jail; bizarre behavior; lying about her hearing the cries of the victim and saying she was in the house and then changing her story, and other evidence brought in an American court could get someone convicted here in the good old US of A. When people leave our country they accept that they are giving up their rights in america and allowing themselves to be subject to a foreign country's laws.

    If you feel sorry for Amanda Knox do so but what amazes me is that are press seems to portray her as a victim when they seem to forget the fact that the real victim in this case is deceased.

    December 5, 2009 at 1:20 am |
  19. Krista

    Amanda is innocent and we are once again shown how badly the justice system has failed. My heart goes out to Amanda and her family – stay strong. I truly hope Amanda gets to appeal her case – there is NO evidence and throughout the last two years you can see the innocence on her face and hear it in her voice. She was framed and Italy will definately be losing tourists because of all of this.

    December 5, 2009 at 1:13 am |
  20. Donna Monroe

    Amanda is innocent! Boycott Italy!

    December 5, 2009 at 1:06 am |
  21. liz

    Did anything think that maybe she did have a part in it? She did lie about what happened that night, if she haden't of been there why would she say that at one point she had to cover her ears to soften the sound of her screams? She also admitted to doing drugs so maybe she was to wacked out of her brain to know what she was doing.

    December 5, 2009 at 12:35 am |
  22. calex

    I am the parent of an exchange student who is currrently studying in Florence, Italy. My heart and prayers go out to Amanda and her family so that they can maintain the strength they need to endure this seemingly endless nightmare.

    Likewise to the parents of the first victim Meredith because they lost a daughter too.

    Perhaps the American colleges and universities should consider a boycott of Italy since the US students are an economic force within the Italian economy.

    Justice has not been served, no one has won, and neither party can be satisfied. How terrible for all.

    December 5, 2009 at 12:30 am |
  23. Art

    Are amerincans that ignorant that they can not respect another countries legal system, judicial practices and other regulatory bodies.

    This girl chose to live in another country, just as people do in America every day....you learn to live by the law of the land or don't live there.

    This girl's smug smile and blame game caught up with her. I have travelled the world and spent vast amounts of time in Italy. It is a country that at times make the USA look backwards.

    Don't be ignorant America, respect other countries rather than look self righteous and turn your nose down because some immature girl made poor decisions and is now paying the price. Americans need to grow up and respect other countries and think every American is innocent when tried in another country.

    The Italian system got this one right!

    December 5, 2009 at 12:06 am |
  24. Antonio

    Wendy, you are so certain in your view, and yet:
    1. Amanda never confessed to the crime.
    2. the dna ... which dna? Amanda's? It was on the knife handle the police allege was used in the crime. Well, surprise: the knife was taken from Raffaele's apartment, not Amanda's, and since she made dinner there, why wouldn't her dna be on it, if she used it to cook? how is that evidence of a crime?
    3. "bizarre behavior" - right on this one. But is that automatically a sign of guilt? could there be other explanations? you have to examine each specific bizarre act on its own merits.
    4. enough evidence to convict: Bloom is correct, you could convict on even less here, or there. But let me ask: how is it that no dna or particulates of any kind of size - not a scintilla - of Amanda's or Raffaele's was found in Kercher's room, while Guede's was all over the place? no prints, fingers or hands, no hairs. Is it humanly possible to clean away one set of prints while leaving the others? when they are completely INVISIBLE to the naked eye?
    I only ask that everyone arrive at a view through consideration of the actual facts based on reason - not on speculation and innuendo.

    December 4, 2009 at 11:51 pm |
  25. gabe barkoczi

    It is time for us to respect and accept the decision of an italian jury. There was a trial they heard the evidence and there was a conviction and it appears that it was a fair trial. We keep bashing them ever since the conviction, meanwhile we are holding hundreds of so called terrorists, some of them certanly are, but some may have been at the wrong place at the wrong time. Over seven years we are holding them without any access to lawyers, not giving them any chance to tell their side of the story in the court of the law. So who are we to criticize the italians after convicting some one based on italian law, in italian court following proper guidelines. The crime was committed in Italy and that is were the case was tried and she was found guilty.Get over it.I am hundred % positive that if she was found guilty here in the US, no one would care, no one would criticize our own justice system.Just look at Casey Anthony case. We already convicted her and the trial is not even near.

    December 4, 2009 at 11:40 pm |
  26. dee

    /Amanda convicted herself. Her lies and her demeanor said it all. Let's not forget the fact that the police arrived at the house to deliver meredith's phone that was discarded, and amanda and her boyfriend looked shocked. They hadn't called the police yet. Her family portrays her as an innocent victim. She is a cold blooded killer......Justice prevailed in Italy. Pray for the victim...

    December 4, 2009 at 11:20 pm |
  27. John Norsetter

    As a former prosecutor, seeing a system where non-sequestered jurors, selected without inquiry as to their possible biases, can render a non-unanimous verdict in a murder case, I am thankful for the criminal justice system we have, however flawed it may be, in America.

    December 4, 2009 at 11:19 pm |
  28. Susie

    A job well done to the Italian jurors. It's sickening to constantly hear about poor Amanda Knox. We should all shed a tear for her victim, Meredith Kercher and Kercher's family. When you commit murder you deserve to be in jail Ms. Knox.

    December 4, 2009 at 11:16 pm |
  29. Leon

    I think we should try to understand the Italian judicial system and stop trying to compare it to American standards not judging her innocent or guilt. Let's just wait and see what happens on the appeal process and we should be thankful that she has that right.....could be worst..as Lisa Bloom stated on Larry King conviction here in the US may have given her the death penalty.

    December 4, 2009 at 11:11 pm |
  30. Wendy

    The US has one of the most pathetic justice systems in the world and I find it laughable that so many americans are wringing their hands, creating preposterous theories as to why an innocent person could be found guilty. A killer was convicted today.

    There was enough evidence (confession, dna, bizarre behavior) to convict this killer even in the american legal system, such as it is.

    Nowhere in the u.s. media coverage are reactions from the murdered victim's parents, who are satisfied the verdict was correct(bbc).

    Americans are quick to convict foreigners on their soil, but God forbid it should happen to them.

    Justice has been served – case closed.

    December 4, 2009 at 10:41 pm |
  31. KS, San Diego,CA

    My heart sank when I heard the guilty verdict today and now again hearing there were cheers outside the courtroom. I will pray for Amanda and for success with her appeal as the evidence needed to convict her is clearly nonexistent. The tragedy of the murder of Meredith is not forgotten and so my prayers go out to her family as well.

    December 4, 2009 at 10:40 pm |
  32. Anna

    Just like the Italian news are reporting right now, America is against this verdict. Please have someone translate the Italian news for you, because if you keep on interviewing Amanda's family, people in this country are never going to understand what is happening and why this decision. Let's not forget Mez and Amanda's DNA on blood stains in the bathroom of their house and on the kitchen knife found in mr Sollecito's house. Also remember Amanda's accusations against an innocent man like mr Patrick Lumumba or the lies she told the police. She is not an innocent person or she wouldn't have lied.

    December 4, 2009 at 10:36 pm |
  33. V. Robinson

    Bravo to Lisa Bloom for emphasizing that Amanda Knox could have been convicted in the USA on similarly flimsy evidence. I hope she is exonerated on appeal, as many victims of overzealous prosecution in our country should be.

    December 4, 2009 at 10:33 pm |
  34. Taylor Franklin

    Please remember the victim of this terrible tragedy. I wished there was more outrage for the dead victim and for the latinos, blacks, asians and others convicted under similar circumstances. Why all this outraged and simpathy for this poor little blonde girl? There's a dead victim and the police chose her out of all the millions of girls to frame? Give me a break!

    December 4, 2009 at 10:31 pm |
  35. Joyous

    Even with all this drama regarding Amanda, I'm praying for meredith's family and friends for their loss. This is just a sad story... Unthinkable and unbelievable.

    December 4, 2009 at 10:29 pm |
  36. Bill

    Drugs, sex, she must be stupid to be doing all this in a foreign country. We here in the US are spoiled with rights and a court system which implies innocence before guilt. She was living dangerously!

    December 4, 2009 at 10:28 pm |
  37. Joyous

    I'm really hoping that amanda didn't commit the crime that she is being accused off. If she is innocent,I'm really praying that she gets acquitted when she appeals.Amanda, our prayers are with you Stay strong and even though I've never met you, I'm praying you. Don't let the media get down. Pray girl! 🙂

    December 4, 2009 at 10:25 pm |
  38. robin nunemaker

    Yes I knew this would happen and to make all thing seem so unreal but true. This system we have around the world needs a major over haul and check into the all the judges who were involved in this case. Make me believe in the system again.

    December 4, 2009 at 10:21 pm |
  39. Ken Mucha

    I am disgusted that our country allows such an atrocity. This girl did not commit murder and yet the Italians set her up from the get go. She was framed by the Italian's. I am an Italian American and assamed of what's happened. We have failed to protect our own.

    The prosecutor is a crimal. There was already someone convicted of this crime and he has admitted he did it alone. Instead of the prosecutor admitting he made grave mistake, he dug himself and his country a deeper hole and arranged this conviction.

    All Italians should be assamed of this situation.

    December 4, 2009 at 10:21 pm |
  40. Bill

    What is not being talked about is what really happened. She obviously got a very bad trial that should be a mistrial. Some how I think she was connect, was she there? What did Amanda say happened? She said she was at the house????? We do not have the whole story. I think she was envoled but one of the guys actually killed her.

    December 4, 2009 at 10:21 pm |
  41. harold

    I honestly can't believe the justice system over there how in the world could they convict some on for there bizZare behavior the poor girl was tramitized probably thinking the whole trial that she was inocent and as far as her lying to the police my goodness she was scared to death some people may deal with tragedy in bizzare ways

    December 4, 2009 at 10:20 pm |
  42. Patricia F. williams


    December 4, 2009 at 10:20 pm |
  43. Elliot Klein

    Italy has disgraced itself with this conviction demonstrating that they are no further along in their judicial system than many third world dictatorships where people are considered guilty the day they are arrested. Convicting someone of murder with no evidence that would stand up in the courts of the US, UK or many other civilized countries makes a mockery of their entire culture. Maybe they are so accustomed to convicting Mafioso that juries just figure that if they government has arrested someone they are automatically guilty. Put Italy on the list of countries where no sane person will travel for fear of false imprisonment and kangaroo courts. I cannot wait to see the prosecutor sent to prison and Ms Knox freed.

    December 4, 2009 at 10:19 pm |
  44. vickie sheldon

    About the Amanda Knox conviction; what a farce. So her DNA was found on a knife, she lived there with her roommate, so of course her DNA would be all over the place. They convicted her because they thought she was immoral and she smoked pot. Why not go after the prosecutor. I hear he has charges against him.

    December 4, 2009 at 10:17 pm |
  45. Lorri Davis

    I would never support one of my young adult children to going to Italy now. This has to be a total nightmare for the parents. As for the Italian public cheering the conviction, somehow I think it has a "stick it to America" feel.

    December 4, 2009 at 10:16 pm |
  46. Annie Kate

    Based on the little bit of evidence they presented and the fact that the prosecution kept changing the motive I am not at all certain that the guilty verdict was fair or just. It seems like the girl was found guilty in the press before the trial, that the whole case was sensationalized and the jurors looked more at that than they did the courtroom presentations. 26 years in prison for something you did not commit is terrible. I hope there is an appeal and that Amanda is exonerated on appeal.

    December 4, 2009 at 10:14 pm |
  47. louise

    Can we please remember that an Italian was also convicted in this crime? This is not just about a gross miscarriage of justice based on the fact that Knox is a pretty American...so what reason for injustice does Sollecito have? Thanks to the fact that I speak Italian, I have been able to follow the story in the us and Italian media. You could be forgiven for thinking the media were writing about 2 diferent cases if you read both accounts of the "facts".

    December 4, 2009 at 10:10 pm |
  48. Rocky

    Why is there a problem when Amanda Knox is convicted in Italy???
    They worked as per the law in their country.
    Don't tell me injustice happened there...

    Just look at all the convictions that happen here in usa and all the jails filled up to keep law enforcement people and judges and lawyers employed here in USA.

    And the most ridiculous thing one hears is to keep a N. Dakota town growing by bringing guantanamo prisoners there so that an empty jail will provide employment there to town folks...

    So keep up the good work here in USA by filling all the jails to its capacity and KEEP OFF OTHERS COUNTRY's (Italy in this case) LAW AND JUDGEMENTS......

    December 4, 2009 at 10:08 pm |
  49. Michael

    Where is the Vatican at in this circus conviction? Where is Rev. AL Sharpton? Where is Rev. Jesse Jackson? Where is the ACLU? The U.S. Government should announce travel warnings to Italy. We all should boycott everything from Italy. Nothing grabs attention as much as hitting them in the pocketbook. We taxpayers give them millions upon millions of dollars for this type of treatment? Come on America join together and let your voices be heard and demand justice!

    December 4, 2009 at 10:03 pm |
  50. Emi

    Amanda is Guilty as Charged...Maybe not the boyfriend

    December 4, 2009 at 9:54 pm |
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