On Thursday, a federal appeals panel consisting of three judges ruled that Brendan Dassey, the 16-year-old nephew to Making a Murderer star Steven Avery, had his murder confession coerced during his infamous interrogation by Manitowac County, Wisconsin police investigators. The ruling states that Dassey's admission of guilt was improperly obtained, and therefore he should be released from prison. Many who saw the scene are likely wondering what took so long.
Back in 2007, Dassey was sentenced to life in prison for the 2005 death of photographer Teresa Halbech. Dassey had stated, very unconvincingly, that he had aided his aforementioned uncle (who also received a life sentence) in the rape and murder of Halbech in their family auto salvage yard.
In August of 2016 a federal magistrate judge had ruled that detectives had coerced the teen (who also has cognitive difficulties), into a bogus confession. That same judge then overturned Dassey's conviction, though the Wisconsin Justice Department appealed that decision—which prevented Dassey from becoming a free man.
Thursday's ruling upheld that magistrate's decision, which leaves district attorneys with two options if they want him to remain imprisoned. They either have to appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court, or re-try him.
We'll be sure to keep you updated if/when we learn what they intend to do.