Adnan Syed, the subject of the popular podcast Serial, has been granted a new trial.
Syed was convicted 18 years ago on charges of first degree murder, robbery, kidnapping, and false imprisonment after the body of his ex girlfriend and classmate Hae Min Lee was found in Baltimore's Leakin Park. Syed was sentenced to a total term of life imprisonment plus 30 years, but that conviction was vacated by a Baltimore Circuit Court in 2016 for “ineffective assistance" after his defense attorney failed to cross-examine a state expert who testified about the reliability of cell tower location evidence. The state appealled the judge’s decision, Syed was denied bail, and he has remained in prison awaiting the Maryland Court of Appeals decision, which, on Thursday, upheld the lower court's ruling.
Syed's new lawyer Justin Brown and his friend Rabia Chundry, who first brought the case to Serial host Sarah Koenig, celebrated the ruling on Twitter.
The state has 30 days to ask for a reconsideration.