Nightly News   |  October 04, 2011

Knox arrives home from Italy

Amanda Knox returned home to Seattle a free woman, after an Italian appeals court overturned her murder conviction. NBC’s Keith Miller has more from Italy, and NBC’s Stephanie Gosk reports from Seattle.

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This content comes from a Full-Text Transcript of the program.

BRIAN WILLIAMS, anchor: Amanda Knox is on a plane tonight, making her way back home to Seattle after a four-year nightmare for her, accused of murder, kept behind bars in Italy , then just yesterday freed by a judge in Italy . NBC 's Stephanie Gosk starts off our coverage in Seattle tonight. Stephanie , good evening.

STEPHANIE GOSK reporting: Good evening, Brian . Well, in less than two hours, Amanda Knox and her family will arrive here in Seattle . You know, the last time she was in this airport four years ago, she was just a student heading off on a school year abroad. Now all of that has changed. There is a throng of media waiting for her. She's expected to say a brief statement and then be whisked away. There's a sense of relief and joy in this city that she's been released, but there are still a host of challenges. The family has been nearly bankrupted by legal fees. Her grandmother has spent $250,000 of her own money and says she's drowning in debt. And now the 24-year-old herself has to pick up the pieces and try to move on. She wrote in her journals that she wants to spend time and help out convicts that have been wrongly imprisoned and that she has a dream of being a mother one day. NBC 's Keith Miller , who's been following this story from the very beginning, has more on the last 24 hours in Amanda Knox 's journey home.

KEITH MILLER reporting: Amanda Knox 's long journey home started at Rome 's international airport , where she was whisked through the terminal accompanies by security guards. And she left behind a country reeling from the stunning reversal of her murder conviction, a judicial system humiliated, and the victim's family wanting answers. In court late Monday night, there was emotional relief. But outside, there was visible anger at a verdict many see as bending to American influence. The media village outside the Perugia courthouse is being dismantled even as the prosecutor said today he will appeal the verdict to Italy 's highest criminal court . But Knox will not be returning to Italy any time soon. It will take months for the paperwork to move through the Italian judicial system , and even if the appeal is granted, Knox is not required to return to Italy to attend court. The one person still convicted of the crime, Rudy Guede , did not act alone, according to police. That left the victim's family asking who else helped kill Meredith Kercher .

Mr. LYLE KERCHER (Meredith Kercher's Brother): If the two who were released yesterday were not the guilty party, then we are now, obviously, left wondering who is the other person or people.

MILLER: Knox 's defense lawyer said there were no winners.

Mr. CARLO DELLA VEDOVA ([shown on screen] Amanda Knox's Attorney): At the end, there is a tragedy. There's a tragedy of a young girl that was found dead, as well as two young kids that have been in jail for four years with no reason.

MILLER: Amanda Knox was a 20-year-old exchange student when she arrived in Italy looking for the experience of a lifetime. Four years later she left with more experience than most people get in a lifetime. Keith Miller , NBC News, Perugia.