- Syed spoke to students in the school’s innocence clinic on Oct. 18
- He was released from prison in September after 22 years
Oct 21 – Less than a month after a judge vacated Adnan Syed’s murder conviction, the newly freed 41-year-old spent two hours this week taking 14 University of Baltimore law students through the history of his case.
Syed, whose case was featured in the popular 2014 true crime podcast “Serial,” was a surprise guest speaker in professor Erica Suter’s innocence project clinic on October 18.
“It was an extremely special experience for everyone because you got to see, ‘Oh, this is what can happen when you put the work in and you fight until the very end of the case,’” said third-year Baltimore law student Amy Werner.
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Syed was convicted of the 1999 murder of high school student Hae Min Lee and sentenced to life in prison. But Syed, who was 17 at the time of the murder, maintained his innocence and supporters raised questions about the integrity of his prosecution.
Suter began working on his case in 2020 and eventually teamed up with attorney Becky Feldman, who heads the Baltimore City State’s Attorney’s Office Sentencing Review Unit, to file a petition for DNA testing. They also uncovered a Brady violation when the original prosecutors failed to disclose two other suspects to Syed’s defense.
A judge vacated Syed’s conviction on Sept. 19, and ordered him released after more than two decades in prison. Lee’s family has filed a notice of appeal, while prosecutors dropped the case against Syed on Oct. 11.
Visiting her clinic was Syed’s idea, Suter said, though she worried that it might be too soon amid his transition to life outside of prison.
“We are in