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Court upholds 'Making a Murderer' Brendan Dassey's overturned conviction

27 June 2017

Brendan played a key role in the Netflix series Making A Murderer which saw him and his uncle Steven Avery convicted of murdering Teresa.

In its first season, Netflix Original #documentary series Making A Murderer explored the alleged wrongful conviction of Steven Avery, and his nephew, Brendan Dassey, (who was 16 at the time) for the 2005 rape, murder, and mutilation of photographer Teressa Halbach.

"We are evaluating the 2-1 decision from the court", said Johnny Koremenos, director of communications and public affairs for the Wisconsin Department of Justice. In November of a year ago, a Milwaukee judge finally recognized that and chose to overturn Dassey's conviction, granting him supervised release from prison while the state decided it it wanted to pursue a retrial. Dassey was sentenced to life in prison in 2007 in photographer Teresa Halbach's death two years earlier.

Dassey confessed to helping Avery carry out the rape and murder of Halbach, but his lawyers argued that the confession was coerced.

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A three-judge panel from the Chicago-based 7th Circuit upheld the magistrate's decision to overturn his conviction.

"But it's clearly the correct decision as the court pointed out the Wisconsin state courts didn't look at the specific qualities of Brendan Dassey: his intellectual limitations, and the specifics about him and they totally missed that analysis".

The series showed footage of police interviews with then 15-year-old Dassey, wherein he had no legal representation or guardian present.

A big win for Brendan Dassey: A federal appeals court panel has ordered Wisconsin to retry the inmate within 90 days or set him free, Courthouse News reports. They can also seek review from the 7th Circuit of the United States or the United States Supreme Court.

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Court documents stated that Dassey IQ's was "assessed as being in the low average to borderline range".

The appeals court had stayed that order until it had made its decision.

The state of Wisconsin has since issued a statement regarding the appeals case.

"Mr. Dassey, now twenty-seven years old, has been held in custody since March 31, 2006 - since he was sixteen years old - for a conviction, based nearly entirely on an involuntary confession, that has been overturned", reads the motion.

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All in all, Dassey still has a long way to go until he is released from prison, most likely. Avery has not taken the witness stand. Dassey also does not testify in Avery's trial.

Court upholds 'Making a Murderer' Brendan Dassey's overturned conviction