Monday, October 24, 2016
Today, Justin Brown filed a Motion for Release Pending Appeal in the Adnan Syed case. This Motion comes on the heels of (1) Judge Welch's order granting Adnan a new trial; and (2) the State's Application for Leave to Appeal this order to the Court of Special Appeals of Maryland. Brown's motion asks Judge Welch to release Adnan from incarceration* (1) while the State appeals Judge Welch's order and (2) in the event of a retrial. I'm going to save the bulk of my analysis for a special Undisclosed episode on the Motion, but I will highlight one aspect of the Motion in this post.
I've long said that this is the most significant evidence in a case rife with inconsistent witnesses statements and questionable cell tower testimony. In his opinion, Judge Welch concluded that the "crux" of the State's case was the intersection among (1) Jay's claim that Hae was buried in Leakin Park in the 7:00 hour; (2) the Leakin Park pings; and (3) Hae's body being recovered from Leakin Park.
Now, however, (1) Jay says that the burial took place "closer to midnight;" (2) the Leakin Park pings would almost certainly be inadmissible at a retrial; and (3) the lividity evidence shows that Hae was not buried on her right side in Leakin Park in the 7:00 hour.
It's also important to note that Dr. Hlavaty completed her affidavit after reviewing every piece of evidence in the State's possession.** Previously, she had reviewed (1) Dr. Korell's trial testimony; (2) the autopsy photos; and (3) the crime scene/disinterment photos introduced at trial. Now, before completing this affidavit, Dr. Hlavaty reviewed the additional crime scene/disinterment photos that were in the State's files but were not introduced at trial.
Combined with Jay's changing burial timeline and the likely inadmissibility of the Leakin Park pings, Dr. Hlavaty's conclusion about time of burial makes it exceedingly unlikely that the State could secure Adnan's conviction on retrial.
*Likely subject to bail and other release conditions.
**Unless there is additional evidence that hasn't been disclosed.