‘Making A Murderer’ News: Is Steven Avery Innocent? Why Were No Other Suspects Presented In Trial?

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Ever since its release, Netflix’s Making a Murderer has become widely popular across the globe.


The show – which chronicles the convictions of Steven Avery and his nephew Brendan Dassey for the murder of photographer Teresa Halbach – highlights evidence of, among other things, police misconduct and tampering of the scene of the crime.

In an interview with Reason TV, Avery’s attorney Jerry Buting discussed the details surrounding the case.

“[Avery] was looking over towards the jury, shaking his head” after the verdict was announced. “All I could think of was what must be going through his mind at that moment. ‘Oh my god, not again. I can’t believe this is happening to me again.’”

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Avery was previously convicted of a sexual assault crime, for which he spent 18 years behind bars. However, DNA evidence almost twenty years later, in 2003, proved his innocence and exonerated him. Subsequently, he sued police and prosecutors for misconduct for $36 million. Two years later, in 2005, Halbach went missing after her visit to Avery’s property.

When asked whether he believes Avery is innocent, Buting said that he does. Regarding the evidence in the case, he said that “none of it ever made sense to me. There was certainly reasonable doubt, I thought, that we presented at trial. And then when we started digging into the evidence, whatever little evidence there was that pointed to [Avery’s] guilt looked so suspicious; that it became so questionable in my mind.” There was manipulation of evidence, he added.

“The thing that’s so unfair and imbalanced here is that the prosecutor who has the full burden beyond a reasonable doubt never has to prove reasonable doubt,” Buting said, adding that the case was concentrated only on Avery; and that the prosecution did not check out the alibis of other people in Halbach’s life.

Avery’s nephew, Dassey, was questioned about the crime for hours after he was pulled out of school. This questioning occurred in the absence of his mother or lawyer. Dassey’s alleged confession confirmed the case against Avery.

“It takes some skill and experience to present false confession case to a jury so that they understand because jurors do tend think people won’t confess falsely,” Buting said. “We know from exoneration cases that they do.”

Almost 20 to 25 percent of the times when people have been exonerated by DNA evidence, they have confessed, Buting said. This number goes up in the case of young people.

Avery’s new lawyer Kathleen Zellner has been critical of the trial process. She said she found new evidence that proves Avery’s innocence. Among this evidence is the cell phone tower data. According to the prosecution, Halbach was last seen on the Avery property and made no phone calls. However, new evidence has come forth that suggests her voicemails were removed after the state said she was dead.

“The singular wireless expert said [voicemail] was not full,” Buting said. “With the information they had, people who were trying to call and leave a message to her would not have gotten the message. And yet many of her friends say they called in and they were getting the message. Somehow or another messages were deleted, whether intentional and otherwise.”

Zellner is expected to file legal briefs in Avery’s appeal on August 29.

Whether, as a defense attorney, it is important to believe that one’s client is innocent or not, Buting said that “the danger is when you start making the assumption yourself of guilt or innocence.”

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    It wasn’t the prosecutions responsibility to present other suspects at trial. It was the defense teams job to prove that SA didn’t, and couldn’t have killed TH. It was the PD job to sift through potential suspects, and make an arrest.

    • kobuskuch2012

      Yes they have to look at potential suspects , but they have to do that with evidence of guilt .
      And they didn’t ! The defence was told , not to blame a second suspect , the hands off the defence where tight .

      • KLBMOM

        SA wasn’t the only client of TH who was questioned in regards to TH disappearance, and SA was initially arrested on gun possession charges….not for the disappearance/murder of TH. It’s not uncommon for police to arrest a person on a lesser charge, and hold him/her until evidence is found to link him/her to a more serious charge.
        You are correct. The defenses hands were loosely tied when it came to introducing other suspects at trial. So, that leaves the defense team to poke holes in the prosecutions case and clear SA name, or to provide concrete proof of police corruption and framing. The defense did not have proof of a frame job, and they couldn’t salt the water with reasonable doubt, bc little to none existed.
        SA no longer has the benefit of being presumed innocent until proven guilty. He’s a convicted murderer. It is now the responsibility of his new attorney to find other potential suspects, and produce concrete proof that he/she/they killed TH.

        • kobuskuch2012

          And now ? The attorney have to proof , there is a killer ? This is the world upside down . Its a grazy world . I’m glad to live in the Netherlands !

        • kobuskuch2012

          I belief Kathleen Zellner will proof that he’s innocent ,
          I think it’s easy to arrest someone . Just say , he is using a the N word , or “f…” . After that you plant some evidence , to make him a killer . Thats how they controle itt . they will do it a , 36 million time .

          • KLBMOM

            I do believe that things like that happen…just not in THIS case. There’s too much. Starting with the fact that in order to plant the blood, they’d have to had known that he had a cut on his right hand. Also, the state crime lab testified that it would take as much as 2 ml of blood to stage that crime scene. Idk if you’ve seen the pics of the blood vial, but it was full.
            It’s easy to feel sorry for this guy. He’s a poor, and unintelligent man from a poor family. He was put away for a crime he didn’t commit. But that doesn’t make him incapable of committing THIS crime.

  • Jaymee Kinsella

    You know this pisses me off. Dumb butt cops covered everything up and blaming him. I watched it over and over. Does not make sence at all. There is nothing pointing to him at all. Its all pointing to the cops. Why cant the judge see it oh wait I know why he is paid by someone that hates Avery. I should have been a lawyer he be out. Blaming a wrong person people make me mad because they are dumb and paid out of pocket.

    • kobuskuch2012

      You are right , this is a shame ! They have live a couple off years in prison , then they will see ,
      whatt’s good and whatt’s bad ! Especialy the Judge , the fucker . He was against the defence !