PERUGIA, Italy - The Amanda Knox murder trial is back on hold while the attorneys prepare their closing arguments. According to her family, Knox looks forward to her trips to the courthouse in Perugia as a welcome break from the monotony of prison life. But there will be no more trips to the courthouse until Nov. 20, when the trial resumes and the prosecutor presents closing arguments.
For now, Knox will remain behind bars in the women's section of the Capanne prison in the Umbrian countryside outside of Perugia. It's lonely for the 22 year old former University of Washington student. Most of the women who were here when Amanda arrived were released long ago.
Italian researcher Giuilia Alagna, who is a student in nearby Assisi, has been closely following the trial, taking careful notes for an American author who is writing a book about the sensational murder case.
Outside of the Capanne prison, Alagna explains that most of the women here have committed crimes like prostitution or drug dealing. She says that they have more privileges than a murder suspect like Knox. For Knox, she says, "I know the prison rules are one or two day's maximum of air (outside) a day."
Knox moved to Italy in September 2007 to study languages at the prestigious "University for Foreign Students" in Perugia. She shared the top floor of a house with three other students. Knox was arrested in November 2007 after her housemate, Meredith Kercher, was found murdered in her room. Prosecutors claim Knox, her Italian boyfriend and a third man killed Kercher during a violent sex game.
Instead of studying at the University as she had planned, Knox is now studying German and other languages alone behind bars, waiting for her trial to end. Someone from her family is always close by waiting for the next opportunity to visit Amanda at the prison.
"We're allowed to visit two times a week for an hour at a time," says her father, Curt Knox. "That's the focus, to let her know someone loves her and cares."
If Knox is acquitted she could be home in time for Christmas. If she's convicted, she could spend another two years in prison while an appeals court reviews her case.