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Making A Murderer Questions Season 2 Must Answer

Making a Murderer is the 2015 Netflix docu-series about the conviction of Steven Avery and Brendan Dassey for their involvement with the murder of Teresa Halbach. The series exploded in popularity over what appears to be a miscarriage of justice, and has left viewers wanting more. After endless Internet speculation and debate, Netflix agreed there was more to the story, and commissioned the series creators to create new episodes.

As it stands at the time of this writing, Avery has exhausted his appeals, so his last hope of getting out of jail hinges on him getting a new trial. Dassey awaits a ruling on a federal habeas petition, which suggests he's been illegally detained as a result of his mental state. Both have secured new counsel for their shots at redemption, and the new episodes will follow them through those proceedings. But burning questions still remain after season one. Here are some of the mysteries we need season two to solve.

Will they address Steven Avery's history of abuse and aggression towards women?

Making a Murderer was super-successful, not just because of the possibly-flawed murder case brought against Steven Avery and Brendan Dassey, but also because Avery had previously served 18 years for a rape that he apparently didn't commit. The filmmakers used this to make Avery a sympathetic character before even mentioning Teresa Halbach.

But Avery's past isn't squeaky-clean. Not only did he have an alleged history of harassing Halbach, including multiple times he used *67 to block his number when calling her on the day she was murdered—which the filmmakers failed to address—but he was also accused of sexually assaulting a family member when she was a minor. He's also accused of assaulting his long-time girlfriend, Jodi Stachowski, a claim she made after Murderer aired. Will the filmmakers give any time to these accusations?

What is all of the untested evidence not shown in the first season?

Steven Avery has secured Kathleen Zellner as his new lawyer. According to a Newsweek profile, Zellner has dedicated her life to the exoneration of the wrongfully accused, and she firmly believes she can free Avery with new evidence. Apparently, there is a lot of it. In a Dateline NBC interview, Zellner said, "Am I going to tell you exactly what it is? I am not. But it's been a long time. There was a lot of evidence that wasn't tested." Why wasn't that evidence tested, and will she share that evidence with the filmmakers?

She also hinted that the methods used to test DNA evidence in the first trial were flawed and outdated, so does that mean she can prove that there was actually EDTA in the blood? This would imply, as Avery's lawyers asserted, that the blood found in Teresa's car, and on the bullet found in Avery's garage, actually came from an evidence kit, placed there by law enforcement looking to frame Avery.

What of Avery's former lawyers?

With Zellner taking over Avery's case, will Dean Strang and Jerry Buting—Avery's defense attorneys in his murder trial—have any further involvement? Not only were they the first to theorize that Avery was framed by the Manitowoc County Sheriff's Department, but they were also so affected by the case, they they spearheaded a movement called "A Conversation On Justice", for which they travel the country and speak about the "broader implications" both Avery and Dassey's cases have on the American justice system. Will we see them in season two? Will they comment on how Zellner's handling of the case?

Will the filmmakers suggest who they think Teresa's real killer is?

Zellner has hinted that there are new suspects. She told Newsweek, "We have a couple. I'd say there's one, leading the pack by a lot. But I don't want to scare him off, I don't want him to run." Season one sparked a multitude of theories about who else may have killed Teresa Halbach, ranging from her ex-boyfriend, to other Avery family members, to even Halbach's own brother. Most of the theories have absolutely no evidence behind them, and are pure speculation, but with Zellner's access to new evidence, will a realistic possibility for another suspect emerge?

Has the endless Internet speculation helped either case?

Since Making a Murderer aired, the Internet has been divided into camps who believe Avery and Dassey are innocent, or guilty. Like every Internet debate, both sides are completely certain of their conclusions, and will spend hours on Reddit proving said conclusions for anyone who dares challenge them. But does any of that ever help with the actual case? According to Jerry Butig, one of Avery's defense attorneys, Internet sleuths may have uncovered a critical oversight that both he and his entire investigative team missed, concerning an evidence photo showing the spot where police recovered Halbach's car key from Avery's trailer. Butig told Rolling Stone that, while they did briefly wonder if it was really just a single key on the keyring, amateur web detectives quickly spotted a photo of Halbach's keyring that did, in fact, have multiple keys on it.

Will the new episodes pick up on this disparity? And will Zellner use both photos to argue that evidence may have been tampered with, which could lead to a new trial?

Are they going to do more with Teresa Halbach's cell phone records?

One of the glaring omissions from Avery's murder trial was an in-depth investigation into Teresa Halbach's cell phone records. If either the defense or prosecution dug deeply into them, season one only glossed over a few facts. There were voicemails that got deleted after her presumed time of death, as well as testimony from her ex-boyfriend that he and her roommate hacked into her online phone account, supposedly to aid the investigation into her disappearance. And now, Zellner suggests that Halbach was in communication with a convicted sex offender just two days before her murder, and the police never tracked down or questioned him.

Zellner seems convinced that a more thorough investigation into Halbach's life is the key to finding the real killer, and freeing Avery. She even told Newsweek, "And women who have bad judgment about men are murdered," which is pretty strong, borderline victim-blaming language, as well as an indication of where Zellner may be leading her investigation. Will season two of Making a Murderer actually shift the focus from Avery, and start prying into Teresa Halbach's life?

How will Brendan Dassey's release affect the case?

Avery's nephew Brendan Dassey, who was convicted alongside his uncle after confessing to helping Avery rape and murder Halbach, had his conviction overturned in August of 2016. The judge presiding over the case pointed to Dassey's IQ—reportedly "assessed as being in the low average to borderline range"—as well as the fact that the then 16-year-old was questioned without his mother present. Prosecutors were given 90 days to bring back to trial, after which he'd be ordered released from prison.

As it turned out, Dassey didn't see trial again during the interim, and in November of 2016, the judge ordered his release. Wisconsin Attorney General Brad Schimel immediately mounted a last-ditch effort to fight Dassey's release under the supervision of the U.S. Probation Office, vowing to try and keep Dassey in custody with an "emergency motion." How it all shakes out obviously remains to be seen, and it's a part of the story we very much expect to see told during Making a Murderer's second season.