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Making A Murderer: Teresa Halbach's Death Certificate Throws Doubts On Steven Avery's Conviction

06/03/2016 16:47 | Updated 06 March 2016

The release of Teresa Halbach's death certificate has further muddied the already murky waters surrounding the 'Making a Murderer' case.

making a murderer

- The original cause of death was indicated as "Undetermined" but was then crossed out.

- The box indicating an autopsy had been carried out was ticked even though the date and time on the form say it was filled in before Halbach's remains were found.

- In fact it was six weeks before the DNA evidence used in the case was confirmed by the FBI.

- The report declares Halbach dead on 10 November, the day before Steven Avery was charged with her murder and only a day after the Calumet County coroner received the bone fragments.

Avery, now 53, was convicted of Halbach's murder in 2007 and sentenced to life imprisonment without parole.

His new lawyer appears to be increasingly confident he will soon be a free man.

Kathleen Zellner has been gleefully tweeting anecdotes about the current circumstances of the subject of the hit series 'Making a Murderer'.

The directors of the show, Laura Ricciardi and Moira Demos, have confirmed they have spoken to Zellner and are hoping to begin filming a second series as Avery once again seeks to prove his innocence.

They said: "From our perspective this story is obviously not over. It’s real life and (Avery and Dassey’s) cases are both still pending."

Zellner has already raised a number of points questioning the evidence used to convict her client of the murder of Teresa Halbach.

steven avery

Steven Avery

She suggests it does not make sense that the real killer would go to the trouble of trying to destroy her body yet be sloppy enough to leave traces of his involvement elsewhere.

9 Things Not In 'Making A Murderer' That You Need To Know About

  • 1 Ken Kratz claims key evidence was deliberately left out of the series
    The prosecutor claims the makers of 'Making a Murderer' "don't want to muddy up a perfectly good conspiracy movie with what actually happened". He cites the testimony of one witness a who said victim Teresa Halbach told her Avery had once come to the door wearing just a towel. This evidence was dismissed by the court as the dates and details could not be determined.
  • 2 Steven Avery's DNA was found on the bonnet of Halbach's car
    Netflix
    According Kratz, Avery's DNA was found on a swab taken from the hood of Halbach's car. The swab was taken five months after Avery was charged and also after investigators Fassbender and Wiegert had interviewed Brendan Dassey during which they themselves brought up the idea that Avery did something to the hood of the vehicle.
  • 3 Brendan Dassey told his mother that Steve "touched" him
    Netflix
    'Making a Murderer' omits a section where Brendan Dassey tells his mother in a phone call from jail that Avery touched him inappropriately. It should be noted however that this was during the time where Dassey was still purporting the story that he was involved in the murder was true. Read the full transcript of the conversation here.
  • 4 Two members of the jury had links to the Manitowoc County authorities
    Bryce Duffy via Getty Images
  • 5 Kratz cites phonecalls made to Halbach as evidence he acted creepily towards her
    He said: "Phone records show three calls from Avery to Teresa's cell phone on Oct. 31. One at 2:24 [p.m.], and one at 2:35 – both calls Avery uses the *67 feature so Teresa doesn't know it him...both placed before she arrives. "Then one last call at 4:35 p.m., without the *67 feature. Avery first believes he can simply say she never showed up…so tries to establish the alibi call after she's already been there, hence the 4:35 call. She will never answer of course, so he doesn't need the *67 feature for that last call." However the second episode of 'Making a Murderer' begins with a voicemail Halbach left Avery on the morning of her disappearance, asking him to call back.
  • 6 Prosecutor Ken Kratz has been diagnosed with narcissistic personality disorder
    Netflix
    In the 2014 case against Kratz brought by the Office of Lawyer Regulation it is disclosed "he has been diagnosed with and sought treatment for narcissistic personality disorder". The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders lists the symptoms of the disorder as.. - Has a grandiose sense of self-importance (e.g., exaggerates achievements and talents, expects to be recognised as superior without commensurate achievements).

    - Is preoccupied with fantasies of unlimited success, power, brilliance, beauty, or ideal love.

    - Believes that he or she is “special” and unique and can only be understood by, or should associate with, other special or high-status people (or institutions).

    - Requires excessive admiration.

    - Has a sense of entitlement, i.e., unreasonable expectations of especially favourable treatment or automatic compliance with his or her expectations.

    - Is inter-personally exploitative, i.e., takes advantage of others to achieve his or her own ends.

    - Lacks empathy: is unwilling to recognise or identify with the feelings and needs of others.

    - Is often envious of others or believes that others are envious of him or her.

    - Shows arrogant, haughty behaviours or attitudes.
  • 7 Steve Avery had only recently bought the leg irons he was accused of using on Halbach
    Netflix
    Avery claimed he had bought them to use on his girlfriend and none of Halbach's DNA was found on them.
  • 8 The prosecution's DNA expert had the worse record in her lab
    Sherry Culhane was the DNA witness in Avery's 2007 trial and the original 1985 trial for which he was eventually exonerated. The defence raised her work record pointing out that of all the experts in the State Crime Lab in Madison, Culhane had the highest error rate.
  • 9 Ken Kratz recently said there could be grounds for a retrial
    In an interview with TMZ on 4 January this year, the prosecutor said that if science can improve enough to prove blood found in Halbech's car was planted then that would be ground for a retrial.

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