Will Steven Avery Get A New Trial? New Evidence Could Change Everything
Since Making a Murderer premiered on Netflix, fans have been asking one big question: Will Steven Avery get a new trial? It's a possibility. But in order for it to happen, one attorney says it'll take a serious advance in science.
When Avery was on trial for Teresa Halbach's murder, a pivotal moment came with the discovery of a vial of his blood. The vial appeared to have been punctured, according to USA Today affiliate htrnews.com. Defense attorney Jerome Buting thought it could mean that blood found in Halbach's car was actually from the vial, suggesting the possibility that Avery had been framed. When asked about the common claim that the Manitowoc County Sheriff's Department planted evidence, Sheriff Robert Hermann told Romper:
Obviously that’s false. You get that feeling from the movie that there’s a corrupt Sheriff's office up in Manitowoc County, which is the wrong way to paint the case in the movie. There’s a lot of evidence in this case that the film or movie does not show. I could go on and on about specific pieces of evidence that weren’t depicted in the film.
During the trial, steps were taken to determine whether the blood found in the car could have come from the vial. USA Today's affiliate reported that the FBI tested the blood for the preservative EDTA in order to determine whether it could have been from the vial kept after Avery's 1985 conviction; there was no evidence of EDTA found. Since the test was new, results were not verified by independent labs. Though the FBI and State Crime Lab both haven't spoken about the test, Buting believes that any updates to the methodology may warrant a trial to reexamine the evidence. Avery's current attorney, Kathleen Zellner, is eager to see Avery exonerated:
TV lawyers say no way to win b/c they've never won release: we have 17x .How? Belief in client, expertise & public help. #MakingAMurderer— Kathleen Zellner (@ZellnerLaw) January 27, 2016
New evidence to vacate conviction of innocent man always exists but legal team must recognize what will succeed or fail #MakingAMurderer— Kathleen Zellner (@ZellnerLaw) January 27, 2016
A new trial may be in line with what the jury actually wanted. People reported that the Making a Murderer filmmakers spoke with a juror who said they think Avery is innocent. Laura Ricciardi told People the juror believes law enforcement actually did frame Avery:
They believe he deserves a new trial, and if he receives a new trial, in their opinion it should take place far away from Wisconsin.
According to filmmaker Moira Demos, the juror said that members of the jury decided to vary their votes on different counts in order to communicate that Avery might deserve a new trial, according to People:
They believed that if there were a split verdict like this, that would send a message to the appellate courts and that Steven would get a new trail.
Despite petitions and a renewed push from Zellner, Avery is still spending life in prison. But if his legal team maneuvers effectively, he may get another chance at freedom. According to the Wisconsin Post-Crescent, Zellner's tweets about Avery keep his name in the news. Given the popularity of Making a Murderer, it seems as though the case won't evade public scrutiny anytime soon. For Avery, that could be life-changing.