The Associated Press reports that the U.S. Supreme Court has declined to hear the “Making a Murderer” case regarding a teenager convicted of rape and murder. They did not provide explanation why they won’t hear the case. This means that a lower court’s ruling stands for Brendan Dassey.
Dassey was 16 when he confessed to helping his uncle rape and murder photographer Teresa Halbach in Wisconsin. He then said they burned her body in a bonfire. However, Dassey’s attorneys claim he is borderline intellectually disabled and was manipulated into giving this confession. Defense attorneys were asking for Dassey’s confession to be thrown out and the boy be given a new trial.
Wisconsin officials reportedly urged the court not to take the case, as it would second-guess the Wisconsin courts’ determination that Dassey’s confession was voluntary. Dassey’s mother also gave investigators permission to talk to him, and Dassey agreed as well.
The Wisconsin Attorney General’s office stated that they were pleased with the decision of the high court to not hear the case.
Dassey may still be able to get a new trial if a judge is convinced that evidence warrants it. However, there hasn’t been any new evidence spoken of. Dassey’s attorney still says they are fighting to free him after the court’s announcement Monday.
The second season of “Making a Murderer” is currently planned. Dassey’s uncle, Steven Avery, spent 18 years in prison for a rape he didn’t commit before being exonerated with DNA evidence. He then filed a lawsuit against the city, but it was pending when he was arrested for and convicted of Halbach’s murder. Avery and Dassey say they were framed.
Dassey will currently be eligible for parole in 2048. Wisconsin courts ruled that his confession was voluntary and a federal magistrate and three-judge appeals court panel disagreed. The full appeals court ruled 4-3 that the ruling his confession was voluntary was reasonable. The high court’s decision shows that this decision will stay.
*Photo credit Associated Press