Adnan Syed from 'Serial' wins new hearing
Adnan Syed, the man whose murder conviction became a national story after being featured on the podcast Serial, is officially getting another chance.
A Baltimore judge reopened Syed's case on Friday, and his lawyers will be able to present new evidence about his whereabouts on the day of the 1999 disappearance of his high school classmate Hae Min Lee, who was later found murdered.
Syed was tried for Lee's murder and found guilty in a case that included data from cell towers that claimed to show his cellphone had been near the location where Lee's body was found. He is currently serving a life sentence in prison and is now 35.
The reliability of the cell tower information — as well as the lack of investigation around a possible alibi from another person who said she may have seen Syed on the day the crime allegedly took place — had been considered key pieces of evidence that could offer Syed a new chance at getting out of jail.
Officially, the judge's order allows Syed's legal team to reopen what's known as "post-conviction proceedings," not a full new trial. Only the new evidence about the cell towers and the potential alibi witness will be heard, the order says.
One of Syed's lawyers announced the news on Twitter.
Friday's ruling is just the most recent in a series of steps that has provided Syed with a slim chance of going free. In January, the Maryland Court of Special Appeals agreed to consider Syed's complaint. In February, the court agreed to hear an appeal, then sent the case down to circuit court.
Now, Syed's legal team will have the chance to present evidence in court that had not been previously heard.
Rabia Chaudry, a lawyer and friend that has also advocated for Syed's release, highlighted the importance of the ruling.
Read the judge's order:
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