Making a Murderer's Brendan Dassey Conviction Overturned, Could Be Released in 90 Days

Netflix star is the nephew of Steven Avery

By Lily Harrison Sep 09, 2016 9:15 PMTags

UPDATE: The state of Wisconsin is appealing Brendan Dassey's overturned conviction, according to multiple reports. 

"We believe the magistrate judge's decision that Brendan Dassey's confession was coerced by investigators, and that no reasonable court could have concluded otherwise, is wrong on the facts and wrong on the law," Attorney General Brad Schimel said in a statement to Variety. "Two state courts carefully examined the evidence and properly concluded that Brendan Dassey's confession to sexually assaulting and murdering Teresa Halbach with his uncle, Steven Avery, was voluntary, and the investigators did not use constitutionally impermissible tactics."


One of the stars of the Netflix hit Making a Murderer just received major news today in a Milwaukee court.

Brendan Dassey's conviction was overturned by a federal judge moments ago, court reporters tweeted.

According to court documents, a judge ordered that Brendan should be "released from custody unless, within 90 days of the date of this decision, the State initiates proceedings to retry him."

The judge further ordered that "in the event the respondent appeals this judgment, this judgment will be stayed pending resolution of that appeal."

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Netflix's limited series documented both Brendan and his uncle Steven Avery's trials following the murder of photographer Teresa Halbach on Halloween back in 2005.

Brendan's trial lasted 9 days and on April 25, 2007—after the jury had been deliberating for four hours—he was found guilty of first-degree intentional homicide, second-degree sexual assault and mutilation of a corpse.

At the time, Brendan was six months shy of being 18-years-old, but was both tried and sentenced as an adult.

In 2010, Brendan's post-conviction motion was set in place with an appellate; however, a judge denied his team's request for a retrial.

Three years later, the Wisconsin Court of Appeals upheld the judge's previous decision, but that didn't stop Brendan's team from continuing to try every avenue possible to free him despite the fact that the Wisconsin Supreme Court also denied Brendan's team's request to review the case.

Shortly after Halbach's murder, Brendan was interrogated four times over a 2-day period without a parent, attorney or any other adult that could have served as guidance to the teen.

During this interrogation period, Brendan confessed to being a co-conspirator in Halbach's death and rape. Brendan later recanted this confession in a letter to the judge.

His current attorney, Laura Nirider, filed a writ of habeas corpus in 2014 in federal court claiming that "Brendan's Fifth and Fourteenth Amendment rights to due process were violated by the admission of his involuntary confession."

He is currently incarcerated at the Columbia Correctional Institution in Portage, Wis.

(Originally published on Aug. 12, 2016 at 1:11 p.m.)

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