The case that tied knots in the heads of millions is getting a new chapter.
A Baltimore circuit court judge has vacated the murder conviction of Adnan Syed, the man whose trial for the murder of high-school student Hae Min Lee in 1999 was the subject Sarah Koenig’s Serial podcast.
Syed’s lawyer announced that he had been granted a new trial on Twitter:
“I had a feeling in my heart it was going to happen. We are just very happy,” Syed’s brother Yusuf told the Baltimore Sun. “It’s not only a win for us but a win for a lot of people who’re stuck in the system because it opened a lot of people’s eyes about the justice system.”
According to The Huffington Post, Judge Martin P. Welch agreed with the defense’s claim that the lawyer in Syed’s initial trial provided ineffective counsel when she failed to cross-examine the state of Maryland’s cell tower expert about the reliability of key evidence. The state had argued that the cell tower data accurately placed Syed at the location near where Lee’s body was found.
While Serial has been credited with getting Adnan a second chance, it was actually Undisclosed, a podcast created by his friend and attorney Rabia Chaudry (who first brought the case to Koenig’s attention) that unearthed a key piece of evidence that lead to the retrial order: a fax cover sheet from AT&T that noted the unreliability of cell tower information due to a technical glitch. Fans of Serial know exactly how important that piece of paper is.
Of course, this news has massive implications for Syed, his family, and the loved ones of Lee, but will it also lead to a new season of Serial, as well?