Netflix’s Making a Murderer star to be freed Friday

By Alexandra Heilbron on November 17, 2016 | 6 Comments

Still from police tape of Brendan Dassey being questionedOne of the two men imprisoned for the 2005 murder of photographer Teresa Halbach will be released from prison on Friday.

Brendan Dassey and his uncle, Steven Avery, were convicted in separate trials for the murder. Brendan, who was 16 at the time and has an intellectual disability, was questioned by police without the presence of his mother. He was badgered by the police until he told them he committed the crime, then, obviously not understanding what his confession meant, asked if he could go back to school.

Portions of the taped interview were shown during the 10-part Netflix documentary series Making a Murderer. It shows Brendan denying any knowledge of the crime, then after hours of questioning, he finally gives them a confession — but it’s riddled with mistakes, as he incorrectly describes how Teresa was killed. The police, who have the autopsy report, then coach him to correctly describe the crime, putting words in his mouth, which he then repeated.

U.S. District Judge William Duffin ordered Brendan, now 27, to be released from prison at 8 p.m. on Friday (Nov 25). He wrote in his decision: “The investigators repeatedly claimed to already know what happened on Oct. 31 and assured Dassey that he had nothing to worry about. These repeated false promises, when considered in conjunction with all relevant factors, most especially Dassey’s age, intellectual deficits, and the absence of a supportive adult, rendered Dassey’s confession involuntary under the Fifth and Fourteenth Amendments.”

Brendan’s uncle, Steven Avery, was also arrested for the crime, but in his case as well, numerous questions arose in regards to his arrest. At the time, he was was suing the Manitowoc County police department for $36 million for wrongful imprisonment after he was incarcerated 18 years for a sexual assault he didn’t commit. Even though he had an alibi and DNA evidence proved another man had committed the assault — and on top of that, the man gave a confession — members of the police force refused to admit Steven was innocent.

A second season of Making a Murderer has been ordered — the first season began when Steven was released from prison after 18 years and ended with him back behind bars.

Comments & Discussion

  1. WhatWhat • November 17, 2016 @ 9:30 AM

    Is the second season still going to be about Steven?

  2. David • November 17, 2016 @ 10:13 AM

    So, is Brendan Dassey really a ‘star’ as the headline suggests? Hey! Look at me! I was accused of murdering someone and now I’m a star! Does that make Steven Avery a superstar? 😉

    The series was great to watch and hopefully the second series is too.

  3. Jackson • November 17, 2016 @ 10:36 AM

    To answer David, yes, in the same way the Kardashians are stars. Both are in reality series. At any rate, I believe both are innocent and a new police force should be brought in to investigate Teresa’s brother. His actions were extremely guilty, every time he was on camera, he looked like he had something to hide and strangely, a friend of his was the one to find the body. Planted at the far end of Avery’s property. With spots of Avery’s blood (which the police had on hand for DNA testing) in tiny portions on the steering wheel of the car she was found in. They then, after having investigated Avery’s home many times, suddenly oh gosh! Look at this! Found her keys on Avery’s floor. This series and many other instances of police brutality have changed the way I look at the police.

  4. Gareth • November 17, 2016 @ 12:10 PM

    Jackson it changed ur look to what so many people already know about the way the police operate (even if some dent and suppress what their eyes and ears tell them). Part of the problem though is us. we claim to live in a democratic society but cede more and more authority and give more and more deference to law enforcement. Its like they can never do anything wrong and don’t u dare question their action. It’s always “well you try doing their job” or “well they have a family to go to so why should they not shoot first and ask questions later so they ensure THEIR safety” and worst of all is the “well if you just do what the officer says no matter if he is right or wrong then everything will be fine, sort it out in court later”.Modern cops see that attitude and realize they dont have to change a damn thing about their despicable behavior if they are guilty of any. I fully support law enforcement but only good law enforcement not the cesspool that taint so many agencies and makes it so hard for the numerous good officers who really SERVE and PROTECT (like my now retired godfather)

  5. Candy • November 17, 2016 @ 6:11 PM

    Oh man , I watched the documentary and couldn’t believe it. Small town cops being super corrupt. They had a hard on for Steven Avery and then went on to lynch his disadvantaged cousin. The whole lot of them should be investigated and tossed in jail for falsifying the case. If you haven’t seen the documentary I highly suggest it. Shame on that town’s Police force. What a bunch of lying dogs.

  6. Jenny • December 22, 2016 @ 3:55 AM

    And the corrupt cops/politicians found a way to not let him go free after all. The USA is full of corruption. I’m glad I don’t live there.

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