PERUGIA, Italy (AP) — Amanda Knox is going free.
An Italian appeals court today threw out the murder conviction of the American student in the death of her British roommate, Meredith Kercher, four years ago.
The court also cleared her Italian co-defendant, Knox's former boyfriend Raffaele Sollecito, in the death of the 21-year-old woman.
When the verdict was read, Knox collapsed in tears. Her parents hugged their lawyers and cried with joy. They have regularly traveled from their home in Seattle to visit their 24-year-old daughter during the four years she's been in jail.
Family members of the woman who was killed appeared grim and a bit dazed as the verdict was read by the judge after 11 hours of deliberations by an eight-member jury.
Outside the courthouse, some of the hundreds of observers shouted, "Shame, shame."
The judge upheld Knox's conviction on a charge of slander for accusing a bar owner of carrying out the killing. He set the sentence at three years, meaning time served.
Prosecutors can appeal to Italy's highest court, but there's no word whether they plan to do so.
(Copyright 2011, The Associated Press)