A Wisconsin inmate has reportedly confessed to killing Theresa Halbach, whose slaying was at the center of a hit Netflix series examining whether the men convicted of the 2005 murder actually carried out the brutal crime.
Steven Avery and Brendan Dassey are serving life sentences for murdering the 25-year-old photographer in Manitowoc County. They’ve spent years fighting for their freedom and maintained their innocence through a controversial Netflix documentary called, “Making a Murderer.”
Shawn Rech, the director of “Convicting a Murderer,” — an unaffiliated follow-up to hit docu-series — told Newsweek on Monday that his production crew received the confession from a “notable convicted murderer from Wisconsin.”
The inmate’s name is being withheld until law enforcement can probe his confession, Rech added.
“We haven’t confirmed the legitimacy of the confession, but seeing as it was given by a notable convicted murderer from Wisconsin, we feel responsible to deliver any and all possible evidence to law enforcement and legal teams,” he told the news outlet.
“Having been in production for 20 months, we’ve uncovered an unfathomable amount of information and evidence that is leading us to the truth. Our investigation does not end here.”
Netflix’s “Making a Murderer,” which premiered on the streaming platform in 2016, explored theories that Avery and his nephew may have been set up for Halbach’s murder. Dassey appealed to the Supreme Court, where his request for a new trial was denied while Avery is still involved in the appeals process.
This confession, if reliable, however could pave the way for the convicted killer’s exoneration. It would also mark the second time Avery has been wrongfully jailed in Wisconsin.
He was previously convicted in 1985 of sexual assault and attempted murder but was later exonerated by DNA testing. Avery was released after serving 18 years of a 32-year sentence butw was charged with Halbach’s murder just two years later.
Halbach disappeared on October 31, 2005 following an appointment with Avery at his home on the grounds of Auto Salvage. He reached out to her to photograph his sister’s minivan, which he’d been hoping to sell on Autotrader.com.
Authorities later found her vehicle hidden on the grounds and blood inside the car, which matched Avery’s DNA. Investigators also discovered charred bone fragments in a pit near Avery’s home, which were later identified as belonging to Halbach.
The follow-up, “Convicting a Murderer,” is a 10-part series scheduled to be released on Netflix at some time in 2020.