After more than two decades, Baltimore prosecutors dropped all charges against Adnan Syed following his recent release from prison. Theme of the first season Sara Koenig’s Serial Podcast. was convicted of murder in the 1999 slaying of Baltimore Woodlawn High School student Hae Min Lee, which was overturned on September 19, ABC News informed. Baltimore State’s Attorney Marilyn Mosby and SRU Chief Becky Feldman filed a petition on Sept. 14, announcing that they would file to have the conviction thrown out and for Syed to potentially get a new trial.
“Since the beginning of my administration, my prosecutors have vowed not only to aggressively defend victims of crime, but also to pursue justice — when there is evidence — to correct past wrongs when there is obvious doubt. ” Mosby said in a statement on September 14. “For this reason, after nearly a year of investigating the facts of this case, Syed deserves a new trial where he is properly represented and the latest evidence can be presented. integrity of conviction and to contribute to the correction when this standard was included. We have spoken with the family of Ms. Hae Min Lee and fully understand that the person responsible for this heinous crime must be brought to justice.”
On October 11, Mosby announced that she had her office drop the charges against Syed after further DNA testing proved his innocence. according to CNN. “The elements we tested had never been tested before,” Mosby said. “We used advanced DNA to determine that this is not Adnan Syed.” The investigation into Lee’s death will continue, but for Syed, “this case is over,” Mosby said. “Equally the heartache, sacrifice and trauma that has been inflicted not only on (Lee’s) family, but also on Adnan and his family, who have collectively spent 23 years in prison for a wrongful conviction crime.”
Koenig’s investigation into the series in 2014 focused on the conviction of Saeed, Lee’s classmate and ex-boyfriend, and raised questions about the circumstances surrounding his arrest. Now 41, Saeed began serving a life sentence at 17. When “Serial” first started, Saeed had already been in prison for 15 years.
On Sept. 19, Baltimore City District Judge Melissa M. Finn ordered Syed to house arrest while prosecutors decide whether to pursue a new trial. New York Times informed. Lee’s family was unhappy with the release motion and tried unsuccessfully to delay the decision. The city attorney’s office did not immediately respond to POPSUGAR’s request for comment.
This was not the first time Syed’s conviction was overturned. In June 2016, Baltimore County District Court Judge Martin Welch took the evidence found in the podcast and reversed his sentence. Syed won a new trial on the grounds that his former attorney failed to cross-examine the prosecution’s cell tower expert, who used location data for incoming calls to corroborate the witness who claims to have helped Syed bury Lee’s body.
Since 2016, there have been many legal shenanigans and many setbacks. The state appealed after the motion for reconsideration was granted, and in March 2018, the Maryland Court of Special Appeals upheld the lower court’s decision to reconsider. The state appealed again to the Maryland Supreme Court. The Court of Appeals agreed to hear both the state’s appeal and Sayed’s cross-appeals in July 2018. In 2019, the Court of Appeals reinstated Sayed’s conviction for murder, ruling that he did not deserve a new trial. The four-to-three vote ruled that while Syed’s defense was “deficient” during his 2000 murder trial, it “did not prejudice” the case, meaning the evidence against him was strong.
After changes in Maryland law, Mosby’s office launched an in-depth investigation that led to the September decision to withdraw. Two other suspects were identified as part of this investigation.