Adnan Syed Conviction Overturned, Launched from Jail

After over 20 years behind bars, Adnan Syed has been launched. The topic of the primary season of Sarah Koenig’s “Serial” podcast had his homicide conviction within the case of the 1999 killing of Baltimore Woodlawn Excessive Faculty pupil Hae Min Lee vacated on Sept. 19, ABC News reported. Baltimore Metropolis State’s Legal professional Marilyn Mosby and Sentencing Evaluation Unit (SRU) Chief Becky Feldman had filed a motion on Sept. 14 asserting they might file for the conviction to be vacated and for Syed to doubtlessly obtain a brand new trial.

“For the reason that inception of my administration, my prosecutors have been sworn to not solely aggressively advocate on behalf of the victims of crime, however within the pursuit of justice, — when the proof exists— to appropriate the wrongs of the previous the place doubt is clear,” mentioned Mosby in a Sept. 14 assertion. “For that motive, after an almost year-long investigation reviewing the info of this case, Syed deserves a brand new trial the place he’s adequately represented and the most recent proof could be offered. As stewards of the courtroom, we’re obligated to uphold confidence within the integrity of convictions and do our half to appropriate when this normal has been comprised. We now have spoken with the household of Ms. Hae Min Lee and totally perceive that the particular person chargeable for this heinous crime should be held accountable.”

Prosecutors will now have 30 days to decide to both retry the case or to drop the fees utterly. Mosby mentioned in her earlier assertion that the town state’s lawyer’s workplace was not asserting that Syed is harmless, however fairly that the integrity of his preliminary trial is in query.

Koenig’s investigation in “Serial” in 2014 centered on the conviction of Syed, Lee’s classmate and ex-boyfriend, and raised questions concerning the circumstances surrounding his arrest. Now 41, Syed started serving his life sentence at age 17. When “Serial” first started, Syed had already been in jail for 15 years.

On Sept. 19, Decide Melissa M. Phinn of Baltimore Metropolis Circuit ordered Syed to dwelling detention whereas prosecutors determine whether or not or to not pursue a brand new trial, the New York Times reported. Lee’s household was sad with the movement to vacate and unsuccessfully tried to postpone the choice. The town state’s lawyer’s workplace didn’t instantly reply to’s request for remark.

This isn’t the primary time Syed’s conviction has been vacated. In June 2016, Baltimore Metropolis Circuit Courtroom Decide Martin Welch took proof uncovered within the podcast and overturned his sentence. Syed was granted a brand new trial on the reasoning that his former trial lawyer didn’t cross-examine the prosecution’s cell tower knowledgeable who used location data for incoming calls to corroborate a witness claiming to have helped Syed bury Lee’s physique.

Since 2016, there’s been loads of authorized forwards and backwards and lots of setbacks. The state appealed after the petition for a brand new trial was granted, and in March 2018, the Maryland Courtroom of Particular Appeals upheld the decrease courtroom’s choice for a retrial. The state appealed once more to Maryland’s prime courtroom. The Courtroom of Appeals agreed to listen to each the state’s enchantment and Syed’s counter-appeals in July 2018. In 2019, the Courtroom of Appeals reinstated Syed’s murder conviction, ruling that he did not deserve a brand new trial. The 4-3 vote decided that whereas Syed’s protection was “poor” throughout his 2000 homicide trial, it “didn’t prejudice” the case, which means the proof towards him was robust.

After a change in Maryland legislation, Mosby’s workplace opened the in-depth investigation that led to Monday’s choice to vacate. As a part of this investigation, two various suspects had been recognized.

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