The highest court in Italy on Friday has overturned the murder convictions of Amanda Knox and her ex-boyfriend in the sensational 2007 stabbing death of her British roommate.
The ruling was the latest turn in an odyssey of international justice for Knox, who spent four years in an Italian jail after the killing. She returned to the United States when she was initially acquitted in 2011, vowing never to return to Italy, and waited for the verdict on the second trial in her hometown of Seattle.
Knox thanked her supporters in a short statement after the verdict was announced. “I am tremendously relieved and grateful for the decision of the Supreme Court of Italy,” she said. “The knowledge of my innocence has given me strength in the darkest times of this ordeal.”
Knox’s family also thanked those who “have spoken about her innocence.”“We are thrilled with and grateful for today’s decision from the Supreme Court of Italy. And we are grateful beyond measure for all that so many of you have done for her,” the family said in a statement.
Knox’s Seattle-based supporters breathed a sigh of relief after the verdict came down — not just for Knox, but for her ex-boyfriend, Raffaele Sollecito.
“That was one of the biggest fears for us, is him going back to prison because he does not belong there,” Karen Pruett, a Knox family friend, said.
Knox and Sollecito were convicted in 2009, then acquitted and freed in 2011. An appeals court overturned the acquittals and ordered a new trial, and they were convicted again last year. Knox was sentenced in absentia to 25 years in prison. Sollecito was sentenced to 28 1/2 years.
Sollecito’s attorney, Giulia Bongiorno, attacked the 2014 decision Friday, saying there were errors of “colossal proportions,” that resulted in the guilty verdicts, according to The Associated Press.
Friday’s decision was announced at 10:30 p.m. local time (5:30 p.m. ET). Judges started deliberating at noon local time after Sollecito’s lawyers finished their closing arguments. Their reasoning will be released within 90 days. The verdict is the final ruling in the case.
Knox and Sollecito were arrested after the roommate, Meredith Kercher, was found dead in a pool of blood in their apartment in the university town of Perugia, with as many as 40 knife wounds over her half-naked body.
Prosecutors argued that Kercher was killed as part of a sex game. Knox and Sollecito said they were alone together on the night in question, watching a movie, smoking pot and having sex.
Amanda Knox released the following statement after the verdict was read:
I am tremendously relieved and grateful for the decision of the Supreme Court of Italy.
The knowledge of my innocence has given me strength in the darkest times of this ordeal. And throughout this ordeal, I have received invaluable support from family, friends, and strangers. To them, I say: Thank you from the bottom of my heart. Your kindness has sustained me. I only wish that I could thank each and every one of you in person.
The Knox family also released a statement:
We want to express our profound gratitude to all of those who have supported Amanda and our family.
Countless people — from world-renowned DNA experts, to former FBI agents, to everyday citizens committed to justice — have spoken about her innocence. We are thrilled with and grateful for today’s decision from the Supreme Court of Italy.And we are grateful beyond measure for all that so many of you have done for her.
This article originally appeared on NBCNews.com.