Steven Avery files another appeal of his murder conviction in Manitowoc County killing of Teresa Halbach
MANITOWOC - The attorney for convicted killer Steven Avery has filed another appeal in the 2005 killing of photographer Teresa Halbach, in the case that spawned Netflix's "Making a Murderer" series.
Illinois-based attorney Kathleen Zellner has named another person as an alternate suspect in the killing, saying that person had motive to commit the killing and the opportunity to do so. She said the alternative suspect was able to frame Avery by leaving the key to Halbach's SUV on the Avery family's property.
USA TODAY NETWORK-Wisconsin isn't naming the person that Avery's latest appeal lists as a suspect because that person hasn't been charged.
Zellner filed the 100-page appeal Tuesday in Manitowoc County Circuit Court. The appeal says Avery is entitled to a new trial and should be granted one because the defense has found significant pieces of "new evidence." Failing that, Zellner asks that the state grant an evidentiary hearing in response to the issues she raised in the new filing.
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Avery, who turned 59 in July, is serving a life sentence for first-degree intentional homicide as party to a crime and being a felon in possession of a firearm. He was acquitted of a charge of mutilating a corpse; three other felony charges against him were dismissed.
Avery's nephew, Brendan Dassey, was convicted of first-degree intentional homicide and two lesser felonies. He's serving a life sentence.
Netflix explored the killing in 2015 in the first season of its 10-part "Making a Murderer" series.
Zellner had earlier appealed on Avery's behalf. Her April 2021 appeal cited a new witness, newspaper delivery man Thomas Sowinski, who said he had remembered seeing two men pushing a Toyota RAV4 down Avery Road. Halbach's Toyota RAV4 later was found during a search of the Avery family's Auto Salvage yard, which is on Avery Road in northern Manitowoc County.
But the appeals court ruled later in 2021 that it had already reviewed Avery's other arguments, and that the issue involving the witness named in the 2021 appeal "bears little or no relation to those claims already before us."
"This is, instead, a distinct issue that the circuit court should resolve on a standalone basis," the court said in declining to hear Zellner's argument.
Avery is serving time in the medium-security prison in Fox Lake, where he had been moved in June after serving the first portion of his sentence at the maximum-security Waupun Correctional Institution.
Contact Doug Schneider at (920) 431-8333, or DSchneid@gannett.com. Follow him on Twitter at @PGDougSchneider.
This article originally appeared on Appleton Post-Crescent: Steven Avery again appeals conviction in killing of Teresa Halbach