Steven Avery Headed To Appeals Court & One Reason Kathleen Zellner Would ‘Love To Cross-Examine Ken Kratz’

Following directly in the footsteps of Steven Avery’s Second Supplement to Previously Filed Motion for Consideration, Kathleen Zellner, Mr. Avery’s attorney, filed a Notice of Appeal less than 24 hours later.

Sheboygan County Judge Angela Sutkiewicz’s silence since her terse October 3rd denial of a new trial for Mr. Avery has come as no surprise to most. ‘The defendant has failed to establish any grounds that would trigger the right to a new trial in the interests of justice.’ Sutkiewicz opined, while signing off with, ‘As such, no further consideration will be given to this issue.’


Mr. Avery’s Notice of Appeal looks likely to herald a Christmas break for a case that has gathered pace over the subsequent months. Whilst Ms. Zellner is seeking an Evidentiary Hearing for her client, a request for Oral Arguments regarding his case could materialise at the Court of Appeals stage. If Mr. Avery’s appeal proves successful his case will be passed back down to the Trial Court where an Evidentiary Hearing will then likely occur. However if Mr. Avery’s appeal falls once again on deaf ears, The Supreme Court of Wisconsin will be his next avenue of possible relief.

Time-frames relating to US law are seldom reliable. The Appeals Court phase could potentially see the following year come and pass, depending on requests for extensions from either State or Appellant respectfully. One only need look at another of Ms. Zellner’s cases, Melissa Calusinski.

Since filing Ms. Calusinski’s Brief and request for Oral Argument back in May of this year, several extensions have been granted by Judge Daniel Shanes in a case that harbours equally as much possible State corruption as that of Mr. Avery’s.

Mr. Avery’s Second Supplement to Previously Filed Motion for Reconsideration served not only as a statement of intent to move onward to a higher court but also to levy some final blows before doing so.

Defendent Steven Avery’s Second Supplement to Previously Filed Motion for Consideration

Ms. Zellner’s inclusion of sworn affidavits by Mr. Avery’s previous counsel, Dean Strang and Jerome Buting offered universal support from both lawyers that certain mistakes were made and opportunities duly missed during their tenure as Mr. Avery’s attorneys. Most importantly, Mr. Strang’s admission that, to Avery’s detriment, ‘I did not have a strategic reason for these decisions’ regarding not hiring ‘blood spatter’ or ‘ballistic’ (in relation to trace evidence) experts can only further claims of Ineffective Assistance of Counsel.

Further supplemental affidavits from Steven Avery himself and Private Detective. James R Kirby were introduced alongside a first sworn affidavit from Steven Speckman. Speckman, who spoke with Miss. Halbach on October. 31st in an attempt to arrange an appointment to photograph vehicles for inclusion in AutoTrader added further light that Halbach had her Day Planner in her possession at the time of her disappearance and subsequent murder.


Mr. Speckman stated in his affidavit ‘During our conversation on October 31, 2005, [12.44pm] Teresa told me that she was currently in the Sheboygan area handling other appointments in or around Sheboygan. I recall that Teresa told me that she either had just finished an appointment in Sheboygan or was heading to her last appointment in Sheboygan.’

Mr. Speckman’s following statement that Miss. Halbach ‘would be able to meet within the next 30 minutes or so to handle my appointment’ would indicate that Halbach had time before fulfilling her appointments with George Zipperer and Steven Avery (in no specific order). Speckman’s affidavit relating to the potential for Halbach’s Day Planner being in her possession and in turn in her Toyota Rav4 at the time of her disappearance is in addition to that of the sworn affidavit taken from Denise Heitl in which she stated that Halbach pulled over in her vehicle to make an appointment in her Day Planner.

Both affidavits lend credence as to why Ryan Hillegas could have had access to Halbach’s Day Planner if it was indeed in her vehicle at the time of her disappearance and following untimely death. Affidavits taken from both Speckman and Heitl were sworn back in late June of 2017 supporting the fact that Zellner & Associates have been sitting on certain evidence whilst also adding new revelations at an of late weekly basis. Credit to twitter user @cadaverdogbrutu for making me aware of this.

Whilst Ms. Zellner has focused much of her attention on other potential suspects including, Bobby Dassey, Scott Tadych and Ryan Hillegas in relation to the murder of Teresa Halbach, Law Enforcement and State Prosecutors have also been targeted for their role in possible corruption.

Lead prosecutor in Mr. Avery’s 2007 trial for the murder of Teresa Halbach, Kenneth Kratz, has once again come under fire relating to the State’s failure to disclose certain material exculpatory evidence. The exculpatory evidence in question pertains to a forensic report not received in disclosure to Mr. Avery’s then attorney Jerome Buting, relating to computer searches performed by Bobby Dassey on the home computer located at the then, Barbara Janda residence. With the exclusion of this withheld evidence, Mr. Avery’s potential opportunity to name 3rd party suspects as to the murder of Ms. Halbach was unequivocally prohibited via the introduction of Judge. Patrick Willis’ Denny Ruling.

Former Calumet County District Attorney & Lead Prosecutor In Mr. Avery’s Murder Trial, Kenneth Kratz

Ms. Zellner’s distaste for Mr. Kratz’s actions in the lead up to, and during Mr. Avery’s trial has been well documented through not only her legal filings, but also her use of Twitter.

During Zellner’s ‘twitter feud’ with her client’s detractors, I asked whether her 100 question quiz for the ‘guilters’ was a way to keep them occupied?

‘Absolutely’ Zellner wrote. ‘ [I] Got tired of hearing legal commentators and guilters pontificating without having read the trial transcripts or discovery.’ Of more importance though was what was directed towards Kenneth Kratz, ‘ [I] Would love to cross-examine Mr. Kratz with these questions. A ludicrous story that is unravelling!’

Whilst Zellner and Associates offered not to press forwards with claims of unethical practice in relation to Mr. Kratz in their Amended Motion, new claims against the former disgraced prosecutor do not apply.

In the event of a potential re-trial, and then possibly further on down the line, potential Civil case, (In the event that Mr. Avery is exonerated for a second time) the chance of Zellner squaring up to Kratz could very much become a reality. Scenes reminiscent of those between Ms. Zellner and the then District Attorney Kevin Crane in relation to the Ryan Ferguson wrongful conviction would be welcomed by many.


Please feel free to contact me via email or via twitter JamesDidcock@51kikey With any questions or queries.




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    James Didcock


    Writer at Non profit organisation detailing Justice Reform and Environmental Issues. Get involved and make a difference.

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