After being found not guilty in the murder of her roommate, Meredith Kercher, Amanda Knox learned in an Italian appeals court Monday that she would be set free and allowed to return home to the U.S. As observers around the world celebrated Knox's release, some were also wondering about Kercher.
Knox and Raffaele Sollecito, the American student's former Italian boyfriend, were originally sentenced to 25 and 26 years in prison following their 2009 convictions. Sollecito was also cleared of murder charges Monday.
A third defendant in the case, Rudy Guede, an Ivorian-born Italian citizen, was also found guilty of the murder. All three had denied murdering Kercher in 2007.
Guede chose a separate, "fast-track" trial, according to The Telegraph, and was sentenced to 30 years, but received 16 years after appeals. He has claimed to be innocent, but was convicted on DNA evidence.
Stephanie Kercher, Meredith Kercher's sister, said forgiveness "does not come into it" at the moment.
Speaking to a room full of reporters Monday, she said, "It would be very difficult to forgive anything at this stage. What everyone needs to remember is ... the brutality of what happened that night, everything that Meredith must have felt that night, everything she went through, the fear and the terror, and not knowing why. She doesn't deserve that, no-one deserves that."
Following news of the verdict, the phrase "Meredith Kercher" appeared on Twitter's Trend list of the most-discussed topics. Users on the social network expressed remorse for the 21 year-old victim.
John Bhoy wrote, "After the verdict tonight we should all be thinking of MeredithKercher''s family and friends. They should know the truth. RIP Meredith."
Jill Zarin, "My heart goes out to the family of Meredith Kercher."
Emma Kennedy wrote, "And through all this madness, all thoughts with Meredith Kercherand her family."
Neil Fissler wrote, "Shame Americans cannot remember that Meredith Kercher is a victim, the PR campaign to get Knox off has made me sick. RIPMeredith."
Leo Leo Thomas: "Pretty disgusting the way the American media is so focused on poor Amanda Knox and HER nightmare! What about DEAD MeredithKercher??"
Dan Wootton wrote, "Heart obviously goes out to the Kercher family in all of this. Does feel a bit like Meredith forgotten amidst this chaos."