Adnan Syed, the subject of the first season of the popular podcast Serial, was released from prison after a judge overturned his sentence on Monday. The podcast goes back to the topic of Syed’s case for a one time special episode released on Tuesday.
Syed was arrested in 1999 for the murder of his ex-girlfriend Hae Min Lee. He was convicted in 2000 and sentenced to life in prison. In 2014, Syed gained national attention when he was the focus of the first season of Serialan investigative journalism podcast from the producers of This American life. Hosted by Sarah Koenig, the podcast reviewed the original crime, evidence, and Syed’s trial. The 12-episode first season became a hit due to its episodic storytelling and novel format, and with millions of downloads, it has been heralded as podcasting’s first mainstream hit.
Koenig and her investigation Serial The team focused on a few inconsistencies in the trial itself and the evidence presented. The increased attention has led to the case being revisited in the years since. Syed, who has always maintained his innocence, has managed to overturn his conviction and a new trial. Earlier this month, Baltimore prosecutors told the court they had lost confidence in the conviction, citing a subsequent investigation that pointed to two new suspects and problems with the original trial. As a result, Judge Melissa M. Phinn of the Baltimore City Court dismissed Syed’s conviction on Monday “in the interest of justice and fairness.” Syed, now 41, walked out of court after meeting a free man while his decision to try again is still pending.
New episode of Serial mainly focused on the decision to overturn the verdict and what led to this major change in the case. Koenig has returned to Syed’s story several times over the past eight years each time there is a major change or update in the case, although this is clearly the biggest development since the original podcast. Serial can be found on most major podcast platforms, including Spotify, Apple Podcasts and Serial site.