Adnan Syed, a subject of the influential true crime podcast Serial, could be one step closer to freedom.
Syed has always maintained his innocence, and Serial — as well as the HBO doc series The Case Against Adnan Syed — have led many to question his sentence while obsessing over certain theories. Over the last two decades-plus, there have been multiple appeals and one failed attempt at a new trial. But now there’s yet another twist in the case.
As per The Wall Street Journal, prosecutors in Baltimore are asking that Syed’s conviction be vacated, citing a year-long investigation they say has produced new evidence, including two possible alternative suspects. As such, they arguing for a new trial. They won’t assert that Syed is innocent, but they will say the State “no longer has confidence in the integrity of the conviction.” Until that new trial, they say Syed should be released of his own recognizance.
Among the new evidence is one point that particularly captivated obsesses of the case: the grassy lot where Lee’s car was found, which some think may completely change the investigation. That information was not available in the 2000 trial that resulted in a life sentence for Syed.
There’s also evidence pointing to two suspects, who may have worked together or independently — information that was also not present in the initial trial:
In their reinvestigation, prosecutors found a document in the state’s trial file detailing one person’s statement, saying that one of the suspects had motive to kill Ms. Lee and had threatened her in the presence of another person. The suspect said “he would make her [Ms. Lee] disappear. He would kill her,” according to the court filing.
Prosecutors point to what they call an “abundance of issues that gives the State overwhelming cause for concern.” The reinvestigation, however, is still ongoing, so this may take a bit.