MAKING A Murderer, the Netflix documentary telling the story of inmate Steven Avery, became a small-screen phenomenon after claiming he was framed for murder.
But what happened to Avery, and why was he denied a request of re-trial? Here’s the latest.
Who is Steven Avery?
Steven Avery, now 56, was born in Wisconsin, USA.
His family runs a scrap yard in the city of Two Rivers.
He married Lori Mathiesen and had four children with her – Rachel, Jenny, and twins Steven and Will.
In 1985 Steven was falsely convicted of sexually assaulting a young female jogger.
While in prison, his wife Lori divorced him and he lost custody of his children – including his twin sons who were just a few days old when he was found guilty.
It took 18 years for his conviction to be overturned and he was given a $36million (£28.2million) payout in compensation.
Days later he was re-arrested for the murder of Teresa Halbach.
Avery is currently serving life in prison at Wisconsin’s Waupun Correctional Institution without the possibility of parole.
He struck up a relationship with Lynn Hartman, 53, through letters and phone calls.
One week after their first meeting, the pair got engaged to be married – but it was short-lived.
He reportedly dumped her over fears she was a “gold-digger”.
He starred in a Netflix original series which documented his struggle for “justice”.
In the last episode of the series, viewers are told that Avery has exhausted his appeals and is no longer entitled to state-appointed legal representation.
What previous convictions did Steven Avery have before Teresa Halbach’s murder?
At 18 years old he was convicted of burgling a bar with a friend and stealing two packs of beer, two cheese sandwiches and $14 (£11) in coins.
He spent ten months in Manitowoc County Jail after being handed a two-year sentence.
- ANIMAL CRUELTY
A year later he was found guilty of animal cruelty after allegedly stealing a cat, pouring gas and oil on it and throwing it on a bonfire.
- POSSESSION OF A FIREARM
In 1985 he pointed a gun to his cousin’s head after running her off the road.
He claimed she had been spreading rumours about him.
He was charged with endangering safety regardless of life and felony in possession of a firearm.
- SEX ATTACK
A woman named Penny Ann Beerntsen was attacked and raped by a stranger while running along the beach near her home in Wisconsin. She described her attacker as approximately 5’6″-5’7″, stocky, with brown eyes, long sandy hair, in a black leather jacket. Steven Avery’s picture was included in the crime photo line-up later shown to Beernsten. Despite 16 witnesses testifying under oath that Steven Avery had an alibi at the time of the attack, he found guilty of sexual assault, attempted murder and false imprisonment, and jailed for 32 years. It was not until 18 years later that a single pubic hair proved Avery was innocent and he was released from prison.
When was the Making A Murderer star convicted of killing Teresa Halbach?
In 2005, photographer Teresa Halbach disappeared without a trace.
She was last known to have met Avery at his home on the grounds of his Auto Salvage business to take a picture of a minivan he was trying to sell.
Her vehicle was found part-hidden in his salvage yard and bloodstains recovered from its interior matched Avery’s DNA.
The young woman’s charred bone fragments were later found in a burn pit near Avery’s home.
He was arrested and charged with Halbach’s murder, kidnapping, sexual assault and mutilation of a corpse on November 11, 2005.
The prosecution claimed he invited his 16-year-old nephew Brendan Dassey into his home to sexually assault and torture her.
It was alleged they then took her into the garage to shoot her in the head before burning her body and attempting to destroy the charred remains.
On June 6, 2007, Avery was sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of early release after being found guilty of Halbach’s murder.
What’s next for Steven Avery?
Avery is currently serving his sentence at Wisconsin’s Waupun Correctional Institution.
For the past 12 years he has been fighting for his freedom.
Avery argued that his conviction was based on planted evidence and false testimony.
His attorney Kathleen Zellner has said she has a “big announcement” about his case coming up.
Kathleen Zellner took to Twitter to tease her upcoming revelation.
The civil rights attorney posted: “BIG ANNOUNCEMENT COMING MONDAY STEVEN AVERY CASE:
STAY TUNED. #TruthWins #MakingAMurderer2″
The news comes just under a month after she previously tweeted an update to the case saying that they would be returning to the appeals court after the case seemed to hit a roadblock in April as Wisconsin state lawyers tried to block a retrial.
Avery, 56, and his nephew Brendan Dassey are serving life in prison for the 2005 murder of Teresa Halbach,
Zellner, claims if bone fragments found at a third location are those of Halbach then it undermines the prosecutor’s assertion that she was killed at Avery’s property.
But the state of Wisconsin called for Avery’s appeal to be rejected on the basis that the claims “could have been raised previously on several occasions”.
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What has Avery’s lawyer said?
Avery’s attorney Kathleen Zellner has made explosive claims that Halbach’s ex-boyfriend was physically abusive towards her and may have been the one who killed her.
In a 1,272-page document, Zellner also claims that the victim’s former lover had unrestricted access to Avery’s property and Halbach’s home giving him “complete control of evidence”.
Zellner claims Ryan Hillegas assisted police in locating his former partner’s car.
In the document, retired FBI agent Gregg McCrary declares of Hillegas: “I have seen no evidence that he offered an alibi or any sort of statement regarding his activities from October 31, 2005, to November 3, 2005.
“Nor have I seen any evidence that the authorities ever asked him to do so.”
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