Wisconsin AG asks court to review Dassey ruling

Judges affirm 'Making a Murderer' confession was coerced

A federal appeals court has affirmed a judge's ruling that overturned the murder conviction of Brendan Dassey.

The judge had found that Dassey was coerced into a confession in which he admitted that he assisted his uncle, Steven Avery, in sexually assaulting and killing the photographer, Teresa Halbach.

A court a level below the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in favor of Making a Murderer's Brendan Dassey and approved an appeal that stated he was coerced into a false confession. Dassey was sentenced to life in prison.

A three-judge panel from the Chicago-based 7th Circuit on Thursday upheld the magistrate's decision to overturn his conviction.

The 7th US Circuit Court of Appeals said that "no reasonable court" could find his confession was voluntary.

"We are overjoyed for Brendan and his family, and we look forward to working to secure his release from prison as soon as possible".

Detectives also gave Dassey fatherly assurances, the opinion states.

"And this pattern continued until Dassey finally voiced what the investigators wanted him to say, seemingly guessing, or the investigators fed him the information they wanted". Avery was convicted of first-degree intentional homicide and unlawful possession of a firearm as a felon. Dassey later recanted the confession. A year later, he and Dassey were accused of killing Halbach.

Wisconsin's attorney general plans to ask the full 7th Circuit Court of Appeals or the U.S. Supreme Court to review Thursday's 2-1 split decision from a three-judge appeals panel. Ken Kratz, the prosecutor, wrote in his book Avery that Dassey was "a shuffling, mumbling young man with bad skin and broken-bowl haircut" who could have saved Halbach's life but instead involved himself in her rape and murder and Avery is "by any measure of the evidence, stone guilty".

"We continue to send our condolences to the Halbach family as they have to suffer through another attempt by Mr. Dassey to relitigate his guilty verdict and sentence", Koremenos said.

In the dissent, Judge David F. Hamilton said, "We also should not lose sight of the most damning physical evidence: the bones of Teresa Halbach, broken and charred, buried in the ashes of Avery's burn pit".

The majority opinion states, "Dassey's interview could be viewed in a psychology class as a ideal example of operant conditioning".

During one of the interviews, for example, Wisconsin Department of Justice Special Agent Tom Fassbender said: "Mark and I, yeah, we're cops, we're investigators and stuff like that, but I'm not right now".

Zellner announced on Friday morning that she was traveling to visit Avery in prison and "tell him the good news" about Dassey.

"The supporters of Steven Avery want to lump them together and say 'ah ha! see!"

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