Crime | October 4, 2017 2:04 pm

Focus of Netflix’s ‘Making a Murderer’ Does Not Get a New Trial

Judge ruled that Steven Avery failed to establish grounds to warrant a new trial.

The man who was the focus of the Netflix series, Making a Murderer, has been denied a request for a new trial. Steven Avery has been convicted of killing a photographer Teresa Halbach in 2005, The Guardian writes.

According to The GuardianAvery’s attorney was planning on presenting fresh evidence to the court after his first request was rejected by a state circuit judge. Avery argued that his conviction was based on “planted evidence and false testimony,” The Guardian reports.

Avery’s attorney, Kathleen Zellner, said that they had addition test results and witness affidavits, according to The Guardian. 

“The scientific testing is not completed, we remain optimistic that Mr. Avery’s conviction will be vacated,” Zellner’s statement read, reports The Guardian. 

But Sheboygan county circuit judge Angela Sutkiew said on Tuesday that based on the evidence presented thus far, Avery “failed to establish grounds to warrant a new trial.” Avery argued that the new scientific tests cast doubt on evidence submitted at his trail. He also said the new tests present alternate theories about the killing and questioned the motives of the police, The Guardian reports.

The judge said that there is no reasonable probability that a different result would be reached a new trial.

Brad Schimel, Wisconsin’s attorney general, praised the decision. He said it “brings us one step closer to providing justice to Teresa Halbach’s family,” according to The Guardian, and said that the Department of Justice will not stop defending Avery’s conviction.

Avery was sentenced to life in prison after being convicted of first-degree intentional homicide in the 2005 death of Halbach, a 25-year-old photograph, The Guardian writes. The case included a confession from Avery’s nephew, Brendan Dassey, who said he helped his uncle rape and kill Halbach at the Avery family’s salvage yard, The Guardian reports. But Dassey’s conviction was overturned last year when a judge ruled that investigators “took advantage of the then-16-year-old Dassey’s cognitive disabilities and tricked him into confessing,” writes The Guardian. 

However, the state is fighting that ruling. Dassey is still in custody while the appeal is pending.

Avery, 55, maintains his innocence, as does Dassey. The case became one of national interest when Netflix made Making a Murderer, which was a multi-part documentary examining Halbach’s death. The filmmakers support calls to free both Avery and Dassey, though those who worked on the case accuse the filmmakers of leaving out “key pieces of evidence and presenting a biased view” reports The Guardian.