A Manitowoc County Circuit Court judge has denied Making a Murderer subject Steven Avery a new trial.
According to the Post-Crescent, Steven Avery's attorney, Kathleen Zellner, had argued that the state had failed to disclose the existence of a CD containing "exculpatory, material evidence" until April, which in turn violated Avery's due process to a fair trial and entitled him to a new trial.
However, on Thursday, Sheboygan County Circuit Court judge Angela Sutkiewicz denied Avery a second trial, ruling that Avery's attorneys failed to prove their claim that the state had withheld evidence.
In her ruling, Judge Sukiewicz said that Avery's defense team had access to all of the information on the CD in question, pointing to seven other CDs that the defense had been given in December of 2006, during the original trial. The judge also claimed that a computer expert that had been hired by Avery's defense team had found that the missing CD contained the same information as the seven others.
"In light of all the evidence submitted, it is clear that the defense was in possession of the same evidence as the prosecution prior to trial," Sutkiewicz wrote in part.
In response to the ruling, Zellner expressed her disappointment, claiming that it contained "numerous factual errors, misapplies the law and was filed two days after the due date" set by a court.
"Most states appoint special magistrates to handle post-conviction cases so as to not burden the local judiciary," Zellner's statement continues. "We look forward to including this one issue in the multiple issues currently pending before the appellate court. We look forward to experiencing the level of judicial analysis we know exists with the higher courts of Wisconsin."
This is not the first time that Avery, who is currently serving a life sentence for the 2005 murder of Theresa Halbach, has been denied a new trial. In October, Judge Sukiewicz denied Avery a new trial after his defense team "failed "to establish any grounds that would trigger the right to a new trial in the interests of justice," according to The Wrap.0comments
Avery's nephew, Brendan Dassey, who was also convicted of the crime and is serving a life sentence, was also recently denied a new trial by the U.S. Supreme Court.
Avery and Dassey rose to international interest after their trial became the focus of Netflix's 2015 10-part documentary series Making a Murderer, which brought into question the police's handling of the investigation into Hallbach's death.