Nearly a decade ago, the world became enamored with the murder of Maryland teenager Hae Min Lee and the conviction of her classmate, Adnan Syed. Led by Sara Koenig, a podcast by the name of Serial began investigating Syed’s arrest and casting doubt upon the integrity of his conviction. As the podcast gained traction, more and more listeners began to examine the case closer and call for Syed’s release. Despite the pressure applied by listeners and several notable nonprofits, Syed remained behind bars for more than half of his life. However, that may change in the near future.
Prosecutors in Baltimore, Maryland have moved to vacate Syed’s conviction and take the first steps towards his release from prison. By way of a joint investigation with Syed’s defense team, prosecutors have reportedly found evidence “concerning the possible involvement of two alternative suspects.” The investigation has also identified “significant reliability issues regarding the most critical pieces of evidence at trial.”
“Mr. Syed’s conviction rests on the evolving narrative of an incentivized, cooperating, nine-year-old co-defendant, propped up by inaccurate and misleading cell phone location data. This was so in 1999, when Mr. Syed was a seventeen-year-old child,” Syed’s attorney, Erica J. Suter, stated in response to the prosecution’s motion.
“The most recent revelations as detailed in the State’s Motion have rightfully caused the State to lose faith in the integrity of this conviction. Mr. Syed’s conviction should not stand.”