The not guilty verdicts in the Meredith Kercher murder case are a bitter pill for Italian investigators. That Amanda Knox and Raffaele Sollecito walk free – after four years in prison – leaves no one satisfied.
And so the verdict is ‘not guilty." I don't know every piece of evidence, but my instinct tells me that it could not have gone any other way.
It is a shame that the murder of a young woman, Meredith Kercher, remains largely unsolved. We certainly can't say that the conviction of Rudy Guede soothes our consciences—indeed the new verdict that has freed Amanda Knox and her co-defendant and former boyfriend, Raffaele Sollecito, adds only more nagging questions.
Still, the rules and safeguards of the judicial process must always be respected, and in light of the contradictory elements that emerged in the investigation and the trial, the jury (composed of both judges and citizen jurors) had no choice but to find the defendants not guilty. There wasn't sufficient evidence; and above all, there wasn't, in light of the contradictions raised by the defense, one consistent thread of proof to convict.
And so even if the rules were respected, prompting an exemplary sentence, the Knox-Sollecito trial is certainly not a victory for Italian justice. This is an acquittal that leaves a bitter taste. Who's to say the verdict in the case might have been different if there hadn't been errors, doubts, sudden changes of direction in the prosecution's strategy, incomprehensible discrepancies among experts and the failure of the forensic evidence? But since it could have been different, it would have been necessary to avoid such holes and contradictions, and not chase false leads. This of course didn't happen.
So inevitably, the discussion is bound to shift to the inefficiency of our judicial system and the abilities of our magistrates. By now, there have been too many murder cases in which the justice system has not offered up enough evidence to convince everyone, or anyone even. We must therefore reflect on the current state of the criminal justice system. The Trial of Perugia, if nothing else, will provide plenty of material for just such a reflection.
Read the original story in Italian
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