'Making a Murderer': Kathleen Zellner Responds to State of Wisconsin's Claim Steven Avery Should Not Have a New Trial

The State of Wisconsin doesn't want to see Making a Murderer subject Steven Avery have a new trial, it revealed in a response to Avery filed Friday. His lawyer, Kathleen Zellner, commented on the 19-page response, which aimed to negate her arguments and the new evidence in support of Avery's alleged innocence her team presented in a brief filed March 12.

"The State is thumbing its nose at the appellate court once again," Zellner told Newsweek on Tuesday. "That court specifically ordered that the merits of the alleged bone destruction be addressed. Rather than follow the court's directive, the State has constructed a convoluted procedural argument that defies logic or precedent."

The Wisconsin Court of Appeals granted Avery the right to appeal in late February. One of the biggest talking points in Zellner's follow-up brief focused on a set of potential human bones found off of Avery's property. The bones have never been tested for DNA, and were given to Teresa Halbach's family before testing could occur. Avery is currently in prison for killing Halbach, but Zellner argued if the bones are truly hers, they could be used to free Avery, as their placement does not adhere to the state's original theory of where Avery killed Halbach.

Zellner argued the state committed a Youngblood v. Arizona violation when they returned the bones, meaning they could have been used as crucial evidence to Avery's freedom, but were not preserved. The state's response, however, claimed no Youngblood v. Arizona violation occurred, and there's no reason to think the bones could free Avery.

The Making a Murderer lawyer stands firm on her argument that the state of Wisconsin violated Avery's rights by returning the bones.

"Of course the State cannot address the merits of Avery's claim, because it is blatantly guilty of evidence destruction," Zellner told Newsweek. "Its charade continues without the slightest inclination to discover the truth. Significantly, one of the culprits in the whole sad scenario authored the State's Response. Unfortunately, the citizens of Wisconsin are the recipients of this mockery of justice."

Zellner's last point refers to Thomas Fallon, who both prosecuted Avery in his initial trial and oversaw the decision to return the alleged human bones to the Halbach family. Fallon wrote the state's response, according to Zellner.

'Making a Murderer': Kathleen Zellner Responds to State of Wisconsin's Claim Steven Avery Should Not Have a New Trial | Culture