The lawyer for Steven Avery, the Wisconsin man serving a life sentence for the 2005 murder of photographer Theresa Halbach, has formally alleged Halbach’s former partner may have been responsible for her death.
Kathleen Zellner filed a mammoth 1,272-page notice for post-conviction relief on Wednesday, with the intention of freeing the Making A Murderer subject – or, at least, securing him a new trial.
Her arguments for Avery’s innocence hinge on DNA testing methods that were not available at the time of Avery’s conviction.
According to Zellner, those factors – and the questionable conduct of authorities, as displayed in the Netflix documentary series – mean it’s possible Halbach’s former partner Ryan Hillegas killed her.
The attorney says Hillegas’ lack of an alibi for the night of her murder, the allegedly false information he gave to investigators about damage to Halbach’s car, and his alleged history of domestic abuse are just some of the factors to suggest he had both the motive and the opportunity to kill Halbach.
Some of those allegations aren’t new, and Making A Murderer covered Hillegas extensively, but this new filing may be the most concrete legal response the case has seen after Avery’s conviction.