Kathleen Zellner will examine the theory that evidence against Steven Avery was planted
Steven Avery's new lawyer is confident that she will be able to overturn the conviction that put him behind bars.
Avery, whose story gained international recognition after the Netflix series Making a Murderer became one of the most successful shows the streaming service has ever produced, was imprisoned for the rape and murder of Teresa Halbach in 2005.
Lawyer Kathleen Zellner took up Avery's case shortly after the series debuted on Netflix, and is confident that she can get his conviction overturned, particularly in the wake of the news that a federal judge in the United States ruled that Brendan Dassey's confession was involuntary.
Dassey issued a confession in which he stated that he had helped his uncle, Avery, commit the 2005 crime, but judge William Duffin ruled that investigators had repeated false promises to him.
Duffin noted that: "When considered in conjunction with all relevant factors, most especially Dassey's age, intellectual deficits, and the absence of a supportive adult," the confession was in violation of the US Constitution.
Speaking to The New York Times, Zellner outlined her plans to lodge a request to get access to the DNA evidence used against Avery next week, and order testing on it which was not available at the time of the trial.
"There is evidence that already exists in the case that points to a different location and a different suspect," Ms. Zellner told the Times. "We’ve got a combination of forensic evidence and a tip from somebody that we’ve interviewed multiple times that we think is credible."
Prosecutors cited several different factors as well as DNA evidence during the case, including the fact that Halbach's car was found on his property, with his blood inside and his sweat under the car's hood. They also found a bullet with Halbach's DNA on it in his garage, as well as the key to her car in his bedroom, which also had his DNA on it.
Zellner stated her team will be examining the suggestion that some of the evidence was planted, and new testing methods available to them now could prove that theory. She added that: "I believe if even one bit of evidence is planted, the conviction is going to be vacated."
A spokesman for Wisconsin Attorney General Brad Schimel told the Times that: "The attorney general wants to see justice prevail and will evaluate any new, credible evidence brought forward."
The appeal will take place on August 29th.