MANITOWOC COUNTY — Less than two weeks after Netflix’s new documentary series “Making a Murderer” premiered, the hacker group Anonymous has stepped up with a promise to help free Steven Avery and his nephew Brendan Dassey.
Multiple people on Twitter, claiming to be a part of Anonymous, have made it their mission to prove the innocence of Avery and Dassey.
Numerous posts have pointed to evidence — possibly unexplored until now — that may have changed the outcome of the 2005 murder trial of Teresa Halbach.
Steven Avery and his nephew, Brendan Dassey are serving life sentences for that crime.
The below tweets are a few examples of the attacks on Manitowoc County Sheriff’s Department’s Sgt. Andrew Colborn and Lt. James Lenk.
Both officers — possibly involved in some deep corruption, depending on who you talk to — are subjects of the Netflix series and were involved with both of Steven Avery’s convictions.
Based on the social media posts, it appears that on Tuesday, December 29th, the group is planning to release an evidence list, which will allegedly include incriminating telephone records between Colborn and Lenk.
Colborn and Lenk are suspected of not only discovering evidence which would have cleared Avery of his sexual assault and attempted murder charge from 1985 (for which he served 18 years in prison before he was exonerated), but are also suspected of planting evidence pertaining to the 2005 Teresa Halbach murder case.
Their roles in Avery’s ongoing issues go very deep and the convenient timing of the 2005 murder investigation, in relation to Avery’s own $36 million civil suit against the Manitowoc County Sheriff’s Department has raised eyebrows.
Will this alleged evidence list Anonymous is planning on releasing help prove the innocence of Avery and Dassey?
Dean Strang — Avery’s attorney in the 2005 case — comments on Avery’s chances in an interview with The Cap Times:
“I think the realistic chances for Steven are slim but not vanished or nonexistent and I think they lie under the heading of new evidence, which would either be someone coming forward, someone admitting something, someone revealing a secret they’ve been carrying that would point in another direction or an advance in scientific testing so that the blood and the EDTA (discovered in Halbach’s car) can be revisited.”
With its twists and turns, the 10-part Netflix series has become an obsession for many.
Ten years in the making, the documentary follows the case of Steven Avery, a Wisconsin man released from prison in 2003 after serving 18 years after DNA evidence exonerated him in a woman’s brutal attack.
Two years later, in the midst of a civil suit he filed over his false conviction, Avery was arrested and convicted of the murder of photographer Teresa Halbach.
Filmmakers Laura Ricciardi and Moira Demos focused heavily on what they feel was authorities’ railroading of Avery, and “Making a Murderer” has drawn comparisons to other true-crime projects including the HBO series “The Jinx” and the hit podcast “Serial.”
The series was released on Netflix on December 18th.
It has also drawn criticism.
Former Calumet County district attorney Ken Kratz was the special prosecutor in the case against Avery and his nephew. Kratz has reportedly received death threats from those unhappy about the outcome of the trials, and the Yelp page for his law practice has received so many critical reviews that visitors are greeted with an “Active Cleanup Alert.”
“This business recently made waves in the news, which often means that people come to this page to post their views on the news,” the alert says. “While we don’t take a stand one way or the other when it comes to these news events, we do work to remove both positive and negative posts that appear to be motivated more by the news coverage itself than the reviewer’s personal consumer experience with the business.”
Kratz told Fox 11 News in Wisconsin he felt the documentary was biased in favor of the defense.
“Anytime you edit 18 months’ worth of information and only include the statements or pieces that support your particular conclusion, that conclusion should be reached,” he said.
Manitowoc police have attempted to distance themselves from the cases, tweeting that “All of the cases referenced in the Netflix series were the jurisdiction of the Manitowoc County Sheriff’s Office.”