So given all the evidence against it, why shackle women at all?
That should bother you even if you think that the preponderance of the evidence says that MacDonald is guilty.
There was also some evidence that seemed to point to MacDonald, such as pajama fiber hairs under the body.
c.1300, "appearance from which inferences may be drawn," from Old French evidence, from Late Latin evidentia "proof," originally "distinction, clearness," from Latin evidentem (see evident).
Meaning "ground for belief" is from late 14c., that of "obviousness" is 1660s. Legal senses are from c.1500, when it began to oust witness. As a verb, from c.1600. Related: Evidenced; evidencing.