After serving 16 years of a life sentence for murder, Adnan Syed has been granted a new trial.
In 2000 Syed was convicted of killing Hae Min Lee, his ex-girlfriend and fellow classmate at Baltimore’s Woodlawn High School and dumping her body in nearby Leakin Park.
A senior at the school at the time, his crime became the subject of the compelling Serial podcast, not least because many of the details of the original case simply failed to add up.
Retired Judge Martin Welch handed down the order for a retrial on Thursday citing “an alleged ineffective assistance for the failure to cross-examine the State’s cell tower expert about the reliability of cell tower location evidence,” the Baltimore Sun reports.
The news was broken by one of Syed’s attorney, C. Justin Brown, on Twitter.
The ruling comes four months after a post-conviction hearing where Syed’s current lawyers argued a crucial alibi witness and questionable cellphone records were wrongly overlooked by his original trial lawyer.
The Serial podcast attracted millions of listeners and was one of the most popular of all time, but it was a spin off Undisclosed which uncovered the fax cover sheet regarding the reliability of the cell phone tower evidence that swayed Welch to grant the second trial.