A White House petition calling for the subjects of Netflix’s docuseries “Making a Murderer,” Steven Avery and his nephew Brendan Dassey, to be pardoned for their alleged involvement in the murder of Teresa Halbach has reached over 114,000 signatures.
The White House has to respond publicly since the government petition, created on Dec. 20 after the show’s premiere on Dec. 18, collected the required 100,000 signatures before the January 16 deadline for review.
“Based on the evidence in the Netflix documentary series ‘Making a Murderer,’ the justice system embarrassingly failed both men, completely ruining their entire lives,” the petition reads. “There is clear evidence that the Manitowoc County sheriff’s department used improper methods to convict both Steven Avery and Brendan Dassey. This is a black mark on the justice system as a whole, and should be recognized as such, while also giving these men the ability to live as normal a life as possible.”
The 10-part series was filmed over a 10-year period and chronicles Avery’s troubles with the law. He was wrongfully convicted in 1985 then released from prison 18 years later after DNA evidence exonerated him in rape charges. Avery was then imprisoned for allegedly killing photographer Halbach in 2005 and is currently serving life in prison. Dassey was also convicted for his involvement in the same case.
A Change.org petition, addressed to Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker, is also asking to free Steven Avery. It’s collected more than 309,000 signatures so far.