true crime

Making a Murderer: Stephen Avery's emotional response to news his nephew could be freed.

One of Stephen Avery’s defence attorneys, Jerry Buting, has spoken to Rove and Sam about the groundbreaking news that Brendan Dassey’s 2007 conviction has been overturned.

Dassey, now 26, won the sympathy of people all over the world when Making a Murderer portrayed the injustice of his coerced confession and trial. Now, prosecutors have 90 days to bring him to trial again, or he will be released.

Speaking to Rove and Sam, Buting said he doubts there will be another trial for Dassey, given that “there was nothing incriminating against him other than the confession,” which has since been thrown out of court. It’s exciting news that, for many fans of the documentary, will go some way towards restoring their faith in the justice system.

Meshel Laurie talks to Ken Kratz, the man who locked up Stephen Avery, about this recent development:

But the news is perhaps most significant for Brendan Dassey’s uncle, Stephen Avery, who is currently incarcerated for the same crime, which many people believe he didn’t commit.

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Teresa Halbach went missing in October 2005. Image via Netflix.

This morning, Jerry Buting described Avery's reaction to finding out his nephew's conviction had been overturned.

"On the day the decision came down, they [Brendan's parents] were visiting Stephen Avery," he told the radio hosts.

"So they were able actually to tell him directly, the family members, that the decision had come down and Brendan's had been reversed.

"I believe they were quoted publicly as saying he was shocked and pleased but really surprised because there'd been so many false hopes raised over the years. I'm sure that both of them were thrilled."

Unfortunately, Buting himself hasn't been able to speak to either Stephen or Brendan because in America, it's against the law. "If a party is represented by another attorney, another attorney can't contact him," he explained.

Of course, one of the big questions now is whether the decision to overturn Brendan Dassey's conviction with have any bearing on Stephen Avery's case. Buting says he thinks it will, although the issue is complex.

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The question now is whether the news about Brendan Dassey will affect Avery's case. Image via Netflix.

"Ultimately that's going to have to be up to his new attorney's who are working on trying to get him a new trial," he said.

"See, we were prepared for the state to call Brendan Dassey at our trial. At least part of us was hoping that they would do so because we thought we could show with our experts how coercive and suggestive the interrogation was and to argue that the prosecution would go to these lengths of bringing down this 16-year-old boy with learning disabilities and snaring him into this false narrative shows just how desperate they were to get Stephen Avery.

"Clearly the confession impacted Stephen's case because...the jurors that we had to pick from, 129 out of 130 questionnaires came back saying 'we think he's guilty'. Before we even started. And that was unquestionably because of this false confession narrative that was presented by the prosecution. So, it did impact his case even if it wasn't directly introduced."

During the fascinating interview, Sam pressed the defence attorney a few times about Brendan's reaction.


She spoke for all of us when she said, "I've been dying to know how he feels because he's so cute. He just wants to build a veggie patch in the middle of nowhere."

Brendan Dassey on trial in 2007, when he was 16 years old. Image via Netflix.

Ultimately, Buting didn't get into the details of Dassey's response to the news. Although, other media outlets have reported he is "overjoyed."

It's an exciting time for the case, and must be a moment of supreme pride for Jerry Buting, who passionately defended Stephen Avery, and advocated for Dassey's innocence, even when the outcome looked horrendously dire.