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Who is Kathleen Zellner? Making a Murderer's new player and the other cases she's overturned

Kathleen Zellner might not be on your radar yet, but she’s been one of the key players in the Steven Avery case for the past few years.

As a false conviction attorney, she is responsible for the many Steven Avery updates and developments that we’ve seen in the headlines since part one of Making a Murderer came to a close.

Who is Kathleen Zellner?

Zellner is Steven Avery’s lawyer. Specialising in wrongful convictions, she has overturned more unjust prosecutions than any other private attorney in America.

Since Making a Murderer series one landed on Netflix, her law firm has been working towards appealing the homicide conviction against Avery.

Kathleen Zellner cases: What has she worked on?

Zellner has worked on a number of high profile cases over the course of her legal career.

In 1988, Joseph Burrows was wrongfully convicted of the murder of a farmer, William E. Dulan, in Illinois. He was sentenced with the death penalty a year later and ended up spending five years on Death Row for the crime, which he did not commit.

New evidence came to light when a key witness recanted. His attorney – Kathleen Zellner – persuaded the real murderer to confess at Burrows’ post-conviction hearing. He was exonerated and released in 1994.

Zellner also worked on the Roscetti case, which saw DNA evidence prove the innocence of wrongfully convicted men, and the exoneration of Kevin Fox, who was falsely arrested for his young daughter’s murder.

Kathleen Zellner and Larry Eyler: What happened?

Zellner was the defence attorney for American serial killer Larry Eyler, who was convicted and sentenced to death for the 1984 murder and dismemberment of 15-year-old Daniel Bridges.

Eyler died in 1994, while awaiting his execution, of AIDS-related complications. He had confessed to 21 further homicides of young men and boys, but Zellner was unable to release the information – due to client-attorney privilege – until after his death.

She revealed the details during a press conference, stating: “The reason I’m here is so that the families know, he did confess to the murder of your sons. He told me that, and I hope that can bring you some peace of mind.”

Zellner has said that, following this experience, she never wants to represent a guilty client again.

Kathleen Zellner on Making a Murderer: Will she appear in Part 2 of the Netflix series?

Short answer: yes.

Avery’s attorney made her debut appearance during the trailer for Making a Murderer Part 2.

The second series of the true crime docuseries will explore Avery’s appeals process, lead by Zellner. She says: “I have one goal. And that’s to overturn the conviction of Steven Avery.”

Making A Murderer Part 2 launches on Netflix on Friday, October 19.

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