Making A Murderer Convicted Killer Being Released From Prison

By Kevin C. Neece | Published

Fans of the Netflix series Making a Murderer will recognize the name Brendan Dassey as the nephew of Steven Avery, who was the primary focus of the documentary series. According to, Dassey has been released from prison by the order of a US judge.

Federal Judge William Duffin of Wisconsin was also responsible for the overturning of Dassey’s conviction earlier this year and ordered him to be freed from prison immediately, though he is to remain under supervision with a view to further court developments.

New Forensic Info

This news about Brendan Dassey comes after reports that there are, at long last, new forensic tests being conducted in connection with the case. Dassey and his uncle, Steven Avery, were both arrested in 2007 and sentenced to life in prison for the murder of Teresa Halbach, a photographer who was killed at just 25 years of age. Dassey is now 27 years old, but was just 16 when he confessed to his role in the crimes, including murder, mutilation of a corpse, and second-degree sexual assault.

Judge Orders Probation

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Brendan Dassey’s conviction was overturned in 2006 based on the judge’s finding that his confession was coerced. Now that the same judge has ordered his release from prison, he must, as part of the conditions of his release, submit an address at which he intends to live to the probation and parole office. They also stipulate that he must have no contact with Steven Avery and similarly remain out of contact with any member of Halbach’s family.

Steven Avery Remains In Prison

While Brendan Dassey will soon walk free, Steven Avery remains behind bars, his conviction having been upheld despite efforts to have it overturned. In particular, following the Netflix series’ first season, a petition was made to the White House in 2015 asking for then-President Barack Obama to pardon Avery. However, the president does not have the power to pardon a person convicted of a crime at the state level, so this petition was ultimately both misguided and unsuccessful.

Wrongly Convicted?

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While the first season of the Netflix documentary series was centered on Steven Avery, the second season focused on Brendan Dassey and was released, consisting of 10 episodes, in 2018. The level of controversy surrounding Making a Murderer has been substantial, both nationwide and within Manitowoc County, Wisconsin, where the events documented in the series took place. While the series makes the case that both Avery and Dassey were wrongly convicted, opinions about the accuracy of the series and the strength of their convictions remain ongoing.

Making A Muderer Is Streaming On Netflix

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Making a Murderer was more widely praised for its exploration of Steven Avery’s story in its first season than it was for Brendan Dassey’s in its second. The first season won multiple awards, including four Primetime Emmy Awards in 2016 for Outstanding Documentary or Nonfiction Series, Outstanding Directing For Nonfiction Programming, Outstanding Writing for Nonfiction Programming, and Outstanding Picture Editing For Nonfiction Programming.

It was also nominated for Primetime Emmys for Outstanding Sound Mixing for a Nonfiction Program and Outstanding Sound Editing For Nonfiction Programming, while winning a Webby Award for Film & Video Breakout of the Year and an award from the Television Critics Association for Outstanding Achievement in Reality Programming.