Why Anonymous believes that Steven Avery of Netflix’s Making a Murderer is innocent
Steven Avery has been making headlines since last week. The man is the star of ‘Making a Murderer’, the Netflix-produced documentary series investigating a real-life murder conviction.
The series chronicles Steven Avery, a convicted murderer currently serving a life sentence for the murder of Teresa Halbach. He previously served 18 years in prison for sexual assault, which DNA evidence later cleared him of.
Avery was born in July, 1962 in Manitowoc County, Wisconsin. According to the trailer for Making a Murderer, the Avery family “didn’t fit into the community” as they were particularly poor, had received poor education (Avery is described in the documentary as “barely functioning” and having an IQ of 70) and dressed differently to everyone else.
In 1985, Avery was convicted of sexually assaulting a woman, Penny Beerntsten, for which he received 32 years imprisonment. However in 2003, 18 years later, the conviction was overturned as DNA evidence proved he didn’t commit the crime. Avery then enjoyed two years as a free man, in which he began to file a $36million lawsuit against Manitowoc County for his wrongful conviction.
However in 2007, he was convicted by a jury of first-degree intentional homicide and being a felon in charge of a firearm for the murder of photographer Teresa Halbach, 25. Avery is currently serving a life sentence, without the possibility of parole, at the Waupun Correctional Institution in Wisconsin for the crime.
During the trial, his lawyers argued that the county police officers framed Avery for the murder to avoid the impending lawsuit. The online hacktivist group, Anonymous also believes the same and is trying to prove he is innocent and was framed.
Anonymous say that they have evidence that will help Steven Avery and have set up a Twitter account specifically for this purpose. Anonymous used the Twitter account to taunt the two police officers who are profiled in the film, claiming that they have found emails and phone records that support the allegations.
Anonymous posted a threat to the local sheriff’s department that they would release the documents unless they were officially released. The deadline that was given in that tweet has since passed, but no information has yet been made public. The account has said that another group, GhostSec which is a Anonymous affiliate will be taking charge of releasing the documents.
GhostSec says that the evidence would be unveiled “shortly” while another tweet says that GhostSec is no longer connected with #OpAvery.
— Bryan Clark (@bryanclark) December 30, 2015
The Netflix documentary highlights a range of alleged problems with the case, including what critics have said was coercive questioning and a reliance on possibly dubious evidence. A paste on Pastebin also seems to point to the fact.
It remains to be seen what kind of evidence Anonymous possesses and whether the authorities will take cognizance of such evidence.