If anyone ever tells you that watching TV won't do you any good, then you tell that person the small screen can change lives, as evidenced by a federal court recently overturning the murder conviction of Brendan Dassey, one of the subjects in the wildly acclaimed Netflix docuseries Making a Murderer. If you binged on the series like millions of others, you witnessed the questionable legal counsel of one Len Kachinsky, who served as Dassey's first lawyer for a short time. Kachinsky was surprised to hear about the conviction reversal, but he was apparently quick to take partial credit for it once he found out why it happened.
In the sense that that was an instance that I preserved for appeal, before I was off the case, I was in sense gratified because the fact that that was the basis for magistrate judge Duffin's decision, it shows that I did my job,
Brendan Dassey's murder charge was flipped by U.S. Magistrate Judge William Duffin, whose reasoning behind the decision was based on Dassey's confession to police, one of the most talked about incidents from Making a Murderer, as well as within the series itself. Duffin ruled that the investigators coaxed an involuntary confession out of the young and intellectually challenged boy by lying to him about how the confession would affect his life. The entirety of Dassey's "admissions" to the officers described an insanely gory murder plot (possibly taken out of a James Patterson book) that didn't match up with the crime scene.
At that time, Len Kachinsky was the one who approved that then-16-year-old Dassey could be interrogated without any legal representation present, which was another oft-referenced part of Making a Murderer. He was taken off the case for it, and later had to take the stand to explain his actions. So it's kind of odd that Kachinsky is telling news channel WBAY in Wisconsin that doing his job eventually got Dassey's case overturned, when Dassey possibly wouldn't have had to deal with any of this had a lawyer accompanied him for the interrogations. (Insert Kermit meme.)
Kachinsky did say that he tried to keep that confession out of evidence during the trial, but that obviously didn't happen. He also says he expects the prosecution to file an appeal over this overturning, which he's not alone in.
We can probably expect to see Len Kachinsky again in the future, as Making a Murderer Season 2 is happening. The show's creators Laura Ricciardi and Moira Demos have also responded to the ruling, saying that they'll be documenting all of this as it happens, just like the did the first time around. Will we get to a point where the main defendant Steven Avery also gets his case reversed? It's happened in the past...