'Making A Murderer's Dean Strang Will Be Starring In His Own True Crime Show
Dean Strang, a lawyer who represented Steven Avery in Netflix documentary Making a Murderer, is getting his own TV show. If Ken Kratz wasn't jealous of Strang before, he probably is now. Strang and Jerry Buting were just a couple of unknown lawyers prior to the release of Netflix's Making a Murderer. The documentary, however, catapulted them to an odd level of fame. Stang and Buting represented Manitowoc County, Wis. man Steven Avery when he went to trial for the murder of freelance photographer Teresa Halbach. The pair have been touring around the country giving talks on justice and lawyering, and now Strang will be getting his own show, Dean Strang: Road to Justice.
The series will consist of eight, hour-long episodes, according to Variety. In each episode, Strang will dig into various legal cases and illustrate flaws in the justice system.
The show comes from Covert Media, a new production company founded by film exec Paul Hanson, according to Deadline. Strang will also act as executive producer.
The case Making a Murder exposed was about as weird of a case as they come. Avery had been wrongfully convicted in 1985 of raping a woman who'd been jogging along Lake Michigan when he was 23 years old, despite having an alibi for the entire day the attack occurred. Avery spent 18 years in jail until finally, DNA evidence exonerated him and pointed to a serial rapist, Gregory Allen, who was already in jail for another crime. Investigators had every reason to suspect Allen at the time, and Allen's own confession that someone else was serving time for his crime—10 years after Avery was sentenced—was ignored. Right as Avery was about to net a big settlement from the County in 2003, he was arrested and charged with murdering a freelance photographer who had gone to his family's auto salvage lot on Halloween to photograph a car for Auto Trader Magazine. Halbach's abandoned car was found on Avery's property, and some of her remains were found in a burn barrel near Avery's trailer. However, the documentary explored the possibility that Avery was framed by the same authorities that wrongfully convicted him several years prior. Strang and Buting defended Avery with everything they had, but ultimately, the jury convicted Avery—as well as his teenage nephew—with the grisly crime.
The documentary consumed the Internet after its release. Rampant Internet speculation occurred on both the side of Avery's innocence and of his guilt. Strang emerged as something of a hero while prosecutor Ken Kratz—who was later found to have sexually harassed a woman whose boyfriend he was prosecuting for domestic violence—became the villain. (Kratz has spoken out against the documentary, calling it one-sided, several times.) In a recent interview with The Daily Beast in which he reflected on the case, Strang said that Avery could be guilty, but the trial he had was not how the law is supposed to work, as guilt must be proven beyond a reasonable doubt.
"If our system worked on convicting people on maybes, then everybody could pat themselves on the back and go out and have a beer, convicting a man on a maybe," he said.
Not everyone think Strang did the best he could during Avery's trial, though. Avery now has a new lawyer, Kathleen Zellner, who recently told Newsweek that she thinks Strang and Buting "screwed it up." She said she has found cellphone records indicating that Halbach left the property via the same route she came. The last ping, according to Zellner, was 12 miles away from the Avery property. She said that Strang and Buting had access to these records, but never brought it up.
Strang must not be feeling particularly defensive about that, though, because he called Zellner a "competent aggressive lawyer," and said that her criticism of "some of the work I did at the trial means she is doing her job."
Zellner also said that she has additional suspects in the case, including one who is "leading the pack by a lot." All of the suspects who she has identified are men, and they all had some sort of pre-existing relationship with Halbach.