If you loved the Serial podcast, maybe you’ve been listening to Undisclosed. Or more likely, you haven’t … because I’m the only a-hole I know in real life who’s been keeping up with this case. [Maybe you’ve listened to neither and have no idea what I’m talking about. If you’re one of those people, stop reading and go download Serial right now. If you’re not techy and the idea of podcasts scare you, Serial has warm and fuzzy instructions for what you need to do to listen on your phone or computer. You’re welcome.]
But enough of all that. Because guess what? There’s big news in the case! Remember all the talk about cell phone pings? Welp, it turns out that the prosecution failed to turn over a key bit of evidence to the defense. Namely, a cover page from AT&T that preceded the faxed copies of Adnan’s cell phone records. Why was that cover page so important? Oh, no big reason … except that it stated that cell phone tower pings are not reliable to determine a person’s location for incoming calls.
So yeah. That thing that the prosecution based so much of its case on? Fiction.
Key Witness Changes His Tune
The cell phone expert that testified at the trial is apparently none too happy that he was also not shown this cover page prior to trial. He just wrote an affidavit for the defense that basically discredits his testimony.
As Sarah Koenig points out in her recent blog post, pings from cell towers for incoming calls were used to place Adnan Syed in Leakin Park at the time the prosecution claims he dumped her body.
But if you haven’t been listening to Undisclosed, you’re probably also not aware of some of the other evidence that makes the prosecution’s case look pretty shady. (Deets below.)
Undisclosed, is a podcast by Rabia Chaudry, the woman who initially brought the case to Sarah Koenig’s attention. Chaudry is an attorney and friend of Adnan Syed. On the podcast she is joined by two other attorneys, Colin Miller and Susan Simpson.
Yes, Undisclosed lacks the polished storytelling of Serial. That’s understandable. Sarah Koenig and crew came from the ranks of This American Life. Undisclosed purports to go deep in the weeds of legal issues. Sometimes these expeditions are extremely gripping and other times they are extremely … not.
In any case, here are some highlights of things that Undisclosed has brought out:
- The state’s timeline is probably bogus, as there’s very good evidence there was no wrestling match at all on the day of the murder.
- Audio of Jay Wild’s questioning by police that pretty strongly indicates that he was coached. This episode is a jaw dropper. If you listen to no other episodes, listen to this one. (Episode 3)
- Documented past misconduct by some of the police officers involved in the case, in which several people were released from prison after it was determined they were wrongfully convicted.
- A very interesting (but unproven) theory that the prosecutor delayed charging Jay with accessory to murder so that Jay would be unable to exercise his right to a court-provided attorney. In the meantime, the theory goes, the prosecutor forced Jay to be a shill for the state by threatening to change the jurisdiction of his crime, making it likely that he would get the death penalty. If this turns out to be true — and I’m not saying it is — it certainly paints Jay in a different light.
At present, Adnan’s attorney is attempting to get a new trial.
Now … could someone else please get wrapped up in this case so I have someone to talk to? Much thanks.