Perugia, Italy – Amanda Knox, the American convicted in an Italian courtroom of murder, was exuberant and ecstatic Friday after she was informed that experts had determined DNA found at the murder scene was deemed unreliable.
In fact, she is said to have danced with joy, broke into song and hugged fellow inmates.
According to the Telegraph, she reportedly said, “Finally, now people will believe me… this is the evidence that we needed.”
Knox was convicted in Dec. 2009 of the 2007 killing of British student Meredith Kercher, 21, with whom she shared a cottage in Italy. She was sentenced to 26 years behind bars in an Italian prison. Also found guilty was Knox’s ex-boyfriend Rafaelle Sollecito, who was sentenced to 25 years in prison.
In addition, Ivory Coast native Rudy Guede was found guilty of the slaying, but had his initial 30-year sentence reduced to 16 during an appeal. He has denied killing Meredith, but admitted being present the night of the murder. In addition, his DNA was found at the scene confirming he had sexual intercourse with Meredith.
To see a photo slideshow regarding the case, the evidence involved, and key players, click here.
The prosecution claimed at her first trial that Knox’s DNA was found on the handle of the alleged murder weapon, a kitchen knife, and that Meredith’s DNA was found on the blade. In addition, Sollecito’s DNA was allegedly found on the clasp of Meredith’s bra.
The two independent experts – Stefano Conti and Carla Vecchiotti with Sapienza University in Rome – determined that DNA found on the blade and on the bra clasp were likely contaminated during testing.
“We believe that the technical tests are not reliable,” Conti and Vecchiotti said in a report pointing specifically to samples from the blade. “It cannot be ruled out that the result obtained… may stem from contamination.”
The report continued, “The exhibit was retrieved 46 days after the crime, in a context that was highly suggestive of ambient contamination.”
Nonetheless, both experts agree that their findings were consistent with original tests that found Knox’s DNA on the handle of the knife, later found at Sollecito’s home.
The DNA revelation was highly anticipated by Knox and her family after Guede took the stand at her appeal on Monday, testifying for the prosecution that she and Sollecito killed Meredith.
Prior to that, a jailed Italian mobster, Luciano Aviello, testified for the defense that his brother killed Meredith, not Knox or Sollecito. He was later accused by the prosecution of giving such testimony in exchange for money from Sollecito’s defense lawyer. He was also accused of wanting to use the money to obtain a sex change operation.
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