How Netflix's Making A Murderer Has Made One Prosecutor's Life A Living Hell

Making a Murderer is Netflix’s recent entry into the new wave of true crime projects that kicked off with the podcast Serial and the HBO docuseries The Jinx. Ostensibly, the series is about Steven Avery, a small town native who spent 18 years in jail for a crime he didn’t commit and then later got sent back to prison for another grisly crime. It paints a very negative picture of the law enforcement and court officials involved with both cases, and one prosecutor has been majorly harassed and threatened since the show was released.

Ken Kratz was the special prosecutor for Avery’s case from 2005-2007, in which the Manitowoc County resident was charged and convicted of the murder of photographer Teresa Halbach. Avery’s nephew Brendan Dassey was also charged with being a party to first-degree murder, although his “guilt” has been contested by many due to the troublesome methods used to draw a confession out of him. And hundreds of people are coming after Kratz for both Avery and Dassey, Here’s what people were saying, according to Fox 11.

Suggestions that I shouldn’t even be walking around was offered; the good cheer that I happen to develop stomach cancer for Christmas and really lots of trouble pieces of correspondence.

Those are clearly hateful comments, although in this Age of the Internet, they sadly aren’t all that surprising. And in case his comments weren’t specific enough for you, the critical masses have also come out to antagonize the prosecutor on his law firm’s Yelp page.

Yelp itself has a message set up saying they will be going through the comments, excising those that are reacting only to recent news and not personal experience with the firm. Of the dozens of negative “reviews” there, many criticize Kratz for putting innocent people in jail, as well as the man’s own troubled past, in which he resigned after a scandal revealed he’d sent explicit text messages to a domestic violence victim whose case he was prosecuting. But then there were some plainly damning things like this.

I hope Ken Kratz gets slapped in the face by the cold hand of reality in the form of an incurable deadly virus.

And then there were the Yelpers that chose not to be directly malicious, but rather to spin some irony out of it all.

Ken Kratz is an incredible prosecutor! When I wanted to get my husband out of the picture I got the local sheriff's department to 'discover' *wink wink* a murder on our property. My husband was zeroed in on in a jiffy! Attorney Kratz was able to put him away for life by skirting the defenses questions and skewing the concept of reasonable doubt. I've got the entire house to myself now! Thanks Ken Kratz!

Kratz claims that the creator/producers of Making a Murderer, Laura Ricciardi and Moira Demos, never got in touch with him to give him an opportunity to give his side of the story, although both women claim they did. Kratz also wants Netflix to provide some kind of an opportunity for his side to be told, saying that he believes “80 to 90 percent of the physical evidence, the forensic evidence, that ties Steven Avery to this murder never to have been presented in this documentary.” That’s probably not going to happen, though, so Kratz may be experiencing this kind of backlash for as long as there are people who believe Avery is an innocent man.

Nick Venable
Assistant Managing Editor

Nick is a Cajun Country native, and is often asked why he doesn't sound like that's the case. His love for his wife and daughters is almost equaled by his love of gasp-for-breath laughter and gasp-for-breath horror. A lifetime spent in the vicinity of a television screen led to his current dream job, as well as his knowledge of too many TV themes and ad jingles.