They deliberated for less than five hours before sending him to prison.
Almost two decades later, the Wisconsin Innocence Project picked up Avery's case and requested that DNA evidence that was present at the scene be tested by the courts. Sure enough, Steven Avery was cleared.
His case was so influential that on Oct. 31, 2005, lawmakers introduced "The Avery Act," a bill intended to prevent wrongful convictions like his from happening in the future.
The Insane Twist
On the exact same day the Avery Act was introduced, a photographer named Teresa Halbach was scheduled to meet with Steven Avery at a salvage yard he owned to take pictures of a minivan for Auto Trader Magazine, which she did freelance work for. She kept that appointment, and was never seen alive again.
The details of what's alleged to have happened during that ill-fated visit are too heinous to relay here, but on Nov. 11, 2005, Steven Avery was arrested for the murder of Teresa Halbach. His nephew was also implicated and charged in the crime. On March 18, 2007, Avery was sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole for the crime.
Except for real this time.
It's tempting to assume that something about being an innocent man forced to spend years in prison might have had a role in turning Steven Avery into what he eventually became, and, sure enough, there will be some stories that read exactly that way on the rest of this list. That's probably not the case with Avery, though.
He'd been in trouble from the age of 18, when he was convicted of burglarizing a bar and spent 10 months in jail. There are certainly worse crimes you can commit, like ramming your female cousin's car, forcing her to pull over and putting a gun to her head, which he also did.
A few years prior, another relative admitted that he helped as Avery took his own pet cat, doused it in oil and gas and tossed it onto a bonfire so they could watch it burn to death.
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And you wonder why cats don't like to be carried.