Verdict Watch: Amanda Knox’s ‘Trial by Tabloid’ Comes to an End

Time has just put up my piece on Amanda Knox’s trial by tabloid.

Amanda Knox might as well have faced a trial by tabloid. When the judge and jurors retire on Monday, Oct. 3, in Perugia, Italy, to determine whether she should be held responsible for the 2007 murder of her British roommate Meredith Kercher, they will be weighing more than just innocence and guilt. Is Knox a sinner or a saint? A Madonna or a whore? Which of her newspaper nicknames is the better fit: Angel Face or Foxy Knoxy? Depending on which resonates most with those sitting in judgment, Knox and her former boyfriend and fellow defendant Rafaele Sollecito could walk free or continue to sit behind bars.

In the years since the appeal began, lawyers from both sides have revisited evidence from the previous trial, in which Knox and Sollecito were each sentenced to more than 20 years in prison. Faced with a spiderweb of sometimes contradictory and often ambiguous evidence, tattered lab results and a motley assortment of half-reliable witnesses, the lawyers hung their closing arguments less on the facts than on the character of the accused.

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