If there's not any additional room left inside your brain for Making a Murderer theories, maybe kick a few out to make space for this one. The theory, which first appeared as a YouTube comment before graduating to Uproxx by way of Reddit, proposes the possibility that Steven Avery's conviction was the result of not one but two framing jobs.
The theory nicely ties up most of the loose ends associated with two key ingredients surrounding the discovery of Teresa Halbach's RAV4 on Avery's property, tying both points of confusion back to shoddy attempts by Manitowoc County to cover their bafflingly clumsy tracks:
"Andrew Colborn located that RAV4 with the assistance of Mike Halbach and Ryan Hillegas who illegally trespassed onto the Avery Salvage Yard on the night of November 3rd 2005. Mike Halbach and Ryan Hillegas suspected something was up since the Avery Salvage Yard was the last place they knew Theresa visited on Oct.31st Halloween day. They went snooping on the property and found the car. They checked the car and found the key in the ignition and blood in the cargo area. Mike or Ryan removed the key from the ignition to ensure that no one could easily move the car off of the Avery property... freaked out about this huge discovery they call the Manitowoc Sheriffs Department. Andrew Colborn fielded the call that night and went out and met Ryan and Mike at the Salvage Yard so he could view the car for himself. Ryan and Mike show him the car and to be certain its Halbachs he "calls" in the plate number to dispatch. Colborn has to "call" in... instead of "radio" in... the plate number to Manitowoc dispatch because he wasn't in his police cruiser at the moment, but rather on foot and in the "field' on the Avery Salvage property. This mistake places Colborn at the scene and in contact with Halbachs RAV4... 2 days before it is officially located on November 5th, 2005, by Pam Sturm."
Of course, Colborn's act of "calling in" the RAV4's plates gets a decent bit of screen time in Making a Murderer due to the fact that none of it makes a great deal of sense. This theory alleges that, upon realizing his mistake, Colborn "basically" told Mike Halbach and Ryan Hillegas to shut up about finding the RAV4 and to not relay their discovery to anyone:
"Mike and Ryan are told to go home. Andrew Colborn then immediately calls Lt. James Lenk and briefs him about the discovery of the Halbach car and breaches of protocol he committed on the Avery property, also about Ryan Hillegas and Mike Halbach being there. Lt James Lenk realizing that Colborn's calling in Halbachs plate is a serious mistake with potential consequences orders Andrew Colborn to remove the license plate from Halbach's car and then report to him immediately."
This half of the theory, though potentially damning for all involved, keeps the door open on Avery's innocence without suggesting explicitly that police were actively seeking to frame him. However, this lengthy YouTube comment has much more to offer:
"What James Lenk and Andrew Colborn, or the others for that matter, don't realize at this point and are completely unaware of is that Bobby Dassey and Scott Tadych have kidnapped, raped, shot and then burned Theresa Halbach in the privacy of the gravel quarry off of Jambo Rd on Halloween evening. They choose to burn her body to dispose of their DNA evidence of the crimes. They hid Halbach's car in the rear of Avery Salvage and wiped it clean of their prints. I believe it is Scott Tadych's idea to secretly transport the cremains of Halbach from the gravel quarry and dispose them into Steven Avery's burn pit. Scott Tadych transports Halbach's cremains in secret by using one of Barb Jandas burn barrels from her yard. Scott Tadych fails to collect all of Halbach's cremains from the original burn site in the gravel quarry, thus leaving some behind that FBI investigators later find... but he also fails in making certain all of Halbach's cremains are out of Barb Jandas burn barrel after dumping them into Steven Avery's burn pit. This is why investigators found small bits of Halbach in Barb Jandas burn barrel. Thus making a total of three sites where Halbach's cremains are found. Scott Tadych and Bobby Dassey are unaware that Ryan Hillegas and Mike Halbach have found Theresas car on the property and that Lenk and Colborn are now involved and in play with their scheme."
Take a moment. That's a big one. Though portions of this theory (namely that Bobby Dassey and Scott Tadych are the actual culprits) have previously been suggested by Avery himself, the alleged explanations for the discovery of the key and Colborn's oddly timed phone call add yet another layer of confusion to the increasingly harrowing death of Teresa Halbach.
Making a Murderer, following in the footsteps of The Jinx and Serial, has remained a heated source of debate for practically everyone with access to a Netflix account. Though the docuseries' directors and Netflix higher-ups haven't outright confirmed it, a Making a Murderer sequel of sorts would appear to be imminent. "This story is ongoing," co-director Moira Demos told THR. "If there are significant developments, we will be there."