As the world continues to deliberate whether Steven Avery, the subject of smash-hit Netflix documentary Making A Murderer, is actually guilty or not, yet more evidence has emerged which could prove his innocence.
Avery could now be one step closer to freedom following bombshell new claims that the FBI did not confirm that the bones they tested actually belonged to Teresa Halbach, who Avery was controversially found guilty of murdering in 2007, reports the Mirror.
Many people who have watched the documentary were pretty frustrated with the testimony of Wisconsin state DNA expert Sherry Culhane, and the new allegations suggest that viewers have even more reason to be wary of her.
According to the new claims in court transcripts and evidence logs, Culhane sent only ‘charred material’ to the FBI.
Following this, on January 20 2006, Calumet County Sheriff Jerry Pagel released a statement to the media insisting the FBI had confirmed the bones were matched to Teresa’s. Everyone’s least favourite creepy voiced prosecutor Ken Kratz then reiterated this in an email to Culhane on February 7.
However, it’s now been questioned whether the FBI even tested ‘bone fragments’ since the piece of evidence used in the case was ‘charred material’ and was never proven to match with Halbach’s.
Instead, it was a general mitochondrial DNA match connected to a relative of Miss Halbach’s mother.
Campaigners have added that the ‘bones’ found were not logged properly, meaning evidence could easily have been tampered with.
Stop Wrongful Convictions Campaigner and author Lynne Blanchard said:
Everyone accepts as fact that Teresa’s remains were found in the burn pit. Obviously it appears to be very incriminating, but what is going on with this evidence? Why weren’t protocols followed?
No coroner, forensic anthropologist, arson investigator or photographer was called to the scene when the evidence was discovered. They had all of these high paid experts at their disposal and didn’t call on them until after the evidence had been shoveled up and taken to the sheriff’s office.
The DNA evidence described above is not conclusive. How is it even possible for tissue to survive a fire that disintegrated 60 per cent of the bone mass? The teeth which are commonly used to identify a body because they outlast bone didn’t even survive the fire. Something’s wrong and it becomes difficult to accept this evidence as presented.
The absence of a chain of custody of the bones is critical because it could very well have rendered it inadmissible. What happened? They brought in the state officials right away to ensure that everything would be properly handled. Who dropped the ball? It is very suspicious given everything else that happened in this case.
Since the scene wasn’t documented, there is no proof that any bones were ever on the Avery property. As well, the Manitowoc County coroner was forbidden from entering the scene and none of the forensic experts were summoned until after the bones had been removed. We are to simply accept the word of the state witnesses who claimed to see the bones.
In addition, blogger and Redditor Amberlea1879 has pored over evidence from the trial which she says suggests collusion was going on between Ken Kratz and Sherry Culhane.
She’s now sent her research to Avery’s new lawyer Kathleen Zellner, who is apparently looking into the claims as part of her evidence gathering process.
This case is far from over.