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Seattle and Perugia, Italy are sister cities, and the relationship was strained by the Amanda Knox case.
The relationship doesn’t include specific rules and is meant to foster cultural exchange and lifelong personal connections.
“There’s no official handbook, and if there were, it likely would contain little advice about what to do when it all goes terribly wrong,” reports the Seattle Times. “Like when high authorities in your sister city of Perugia, in Italy’s Umbria region, brand one of Seattle’s daughters — a hapless exchange student — as a satanic, sex-obsessed ;she-devil’ who helped slaughter her own roommate, apparently just for fun.”
Knox’s guilty verdict was upheld earlier this year by the Italian Supreme Court after it was previously shot down by a lower court.
Knox remains in the United States and it’s unclear whether Italy will request or has requested extradition.
She and two co-defendants killed student Meredith Kercher in 2007, the court decided.
Mike James, a retired KING-TV anchorman, was in charge of the relationship between Seattle and Perugia while the trial was going on.
“It’s been a bit of a shadow,” he said.
“It was more than just juggling friendships,” he said. “It was trying to keep the friendship going — separating the trial from the friendship.”
One of the things the association did was work with the Italian city on diffusing tensions between the Italians and Americans over the case, as well as assisting Knox’s family during its long stays in Italy during the process.