Tag Archive: Stephanie Kercher


Amanda Knox

http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2011/10/03/501364/main20114867.shtml

(CBS/AP)

Last Updated 4:04 p.m. ET

PERUGIA, Italy – American student Amanda Knox, who was convicted by an
Italian court for the 2007 murder of her roommate Meredith Kercher, was
acquitted today by an appeals court.

Her murder conviction in the 2007 slaying of her roommate Meredith Kercher
was thrown out by the jury, and she was ordered immediately released from prison
after nearly four years of detention.

Knox collapsed in tears after the verdict was read out Monday.

Her former boyfriend Raffaele Sollecito was also found not guilty.

Knox and Sollecito had been convicted in 2009 of sexually assaulting and
murdering Kercher, who was stabbed to death in her bedroom. She was found in a
pool of blood and covered by a duvet the following day.

Knox was sentenced to 26 years in prison, Sollecito to 25. Also convicted in
separate proceedings was Rudy Hermann Guede, an Ivorian man. They all denied
wrongdoing.

As the verdict was announced, about a dozen supporters from the group called
Friends of Amanda, gathered at a downtown Seattle hotel to watch the proceedings
on TV, burst into applause and cheered. They began chanting, “She’s free!” and
“We did it!”

Earlier Monday, as hundreds of reporters and cameras filled the underground,
frescoed courtroom, Knox tearfully told the Italian appeals court she did not
kill her British roommate, pleading for the court to free her so she can return
to the United States after four years behind bars. The court began deliberations
moments later.

Knox frequently paused for breath and fought back tears as she spoke in
Italian to the six members of the jury and two judges in a packed courtroom, but
managed to maintain her composure during the 10-minute address.

“I’ve lost a friend in the worst, most brutal, most inexplicable way
possible,” she said of the 2007 murder of Meredith Kercher, a 21-year-old Briton
who shared an apartment with Knox when they were both students in Perugia. “I’m
paying with my life for things that I didn’t do.”

“She had her bedroom next to mine, she was killed in our own apartment. If I
had been there that night, I would be dead,” Knox said. “But I was not
there.”

“I did not kill. I did not rape. I did not steal. I wasn’t there. I wasn’t
there at the crime,” Knox said.

“48 Hours Mystery” correspondent Peter Van Sant reports that Knox appealed to
the jury – members of which wept openly during her statement – to reverse the
conviction and let her return home.

“I insist I’m innocent and that must be defended. I just want to go home, go
back to my life,” she told the court through tears.

Van Sant says Knox’s words brought tears even to the eyes of some journalists
in the room.

Minutes before, an anxious Sollecito also addressed the court to proclaim his
innocence and plead for his release from prison.

“I never hurt anyone, never in my life,” Sollecito said, shifting as he spoke
and stopping to sip water. He said at the time of the murder he was in a great
period of his life, close to defending his thesis to graduate from university
and having just met Knox.

The weekend Kercher was murdered was the first the pair planned to spend
together “in tenderness and cuddles,” he said.

At the end of his 17-minute address, Sollecito took off a white rubber
bracelet emblazoned with “Free Amanda and Raffaele” that he said he was been
wearing for four years.

“I have never taken it off. Many emotions are concentrated in this bracelet,”
he said. “Now I want to pay homage to the court. The moment to take it off has
arrived.”

The Kerchers have arrived in a Perugia hotel and are expected to be in court
for the verdict.

Speaking this morning, Stephanie Kercher said her sister “has been most
forgotten” in the media circus surrounding the high-profile trial.

“As long as they decide today based purely on the information available to
them and they don’t look into the media hype, I think justice will be found,”
she told reporters.

Kercher
family doesn’t want victim forgotten

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British student Meredith Kercher's family members, (from L-R) mother Arline, sister Stephanie and brother Lyle attend a news conference in Perugia October 3, 2011. The family of murdered British student Kercher still finds it difficult to forgive her murder, her brother and sister said on Monday, just hours before an expected verdict in an appeal by U.S. student Amanda Knox.  REUTERS/Giorgio Benvenuti (ITALY - Tags: CRIME LAW)http://news.yahoo.com/meredith-kerchers-family-not-ready-forgive-210939790.html

The family of Meredith Kercher said today they still believe Amanda Knoxtook part in her murder and are in no mood to think about forgiveness.

Kercher’s family spoke as the six jurors and two judges were deliberating whether to uphold or throw out the 2009 murder conviction of Knox and her ex-boyfriend Raffaele Sollecito.

CLICK HERE to watch the full story on “20/20” and, for more on Amanda Knox, CLICK HERE.

The Kerchers have stayed away from the nearly year-long trial in Perugia, Italy, until today when they arrived to witness the appeals verdict.

Meredith Kercher’s mother Arline was joined by her sister Stephanie and her brother Lyle. When asked if they believe in the original guilty verdict, Stephanie Kercher said, “We were satisfied with the verdict… Nothing’s changed.”

The family spoke with dignity, but made it clear they are intent on justice for the family member the remember as “Mez.” Lyle Kercher said their hurt has not been eased since the November 2007 murder.

“It’s very difficult to talk about forgiveness at this time, with the [media] hype around the case. And the defendant is involved in that. The brutality of it has been forgotten,” said Kercher’s brother, Lyle. “There comes a point when we are just battling against what’s essentially a PR machine.”

Family of Meredith Kercher Not Willing to Forgive

Referring to the gruesome autopsy photos that were shown during the trial and appeal, the brother said, “If we had them all up here,” he said pointing to the wall behind him, “you would find it hard to forgive someone who had done that to your loved one.”

“I’m not sure we’ll be looking for forgiveness for a while,” he said.

The Kercher family, who traveled from their home in Britain, are wary about the current attention on Knox instead of Meredith Kercher.

“It’s been four years now, and the focus has shifted for obvious reasons onto the proceedings at court at the moment, but Meredith has been forgotten in all of it,” said Stephanie Kercher.

If the appeal is overturned, Knox and Sollecito will be freed from prison. If the conviction is upheld, Knox may have to serve out her 26 year prison sentence and Sollecito will have to complete his 25 year term. Those sentences could be reduced or increased to life, which is what the prosecution is seeking.

Kercher, a student at the University of Leeds, was studying abroad in Perugia for a year when she was killed. She had been sharing an apartment with Knox, an American student studying abroad, and two Italian women. She was found partially nude and with her throat slit in her bedroom on Nov. 2, 2007.

A third person, Rudy Guede, 22, was also convicted and sentenced to 30 years in prison for his role in her murder.

“Her death was uDuring her final statement to the court in pleading for her freedom today, Knox said Kercher was her friend, someone she “shared my life with.. She cared for me.”

Kercher’s mother downplayed their friendship.

“I don’t think they were that close… Amanda only got there in the beginning of October and Meredith was murdered on the first of November,” Arline Kercher said. “I think they were friendly, but not that close.”

The family remembered Meredith Kercher. “Mez was just a lovely girl … she was always there for everyone,” Stephanie Kercher said.

Arline Kercher cited a line in a story she read about the murder saying, “I think it happened to Meredith because she was all that they weren’t.”

CLICK HERE to watch the full story on “20/20” and, for more on Amanda Knox, CLICK HERE.

nreal in many ways,” said Arline Kercher, Meredith’s mother, “and still is. I still look for her.”

 

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