Science

Prosecutors drop charges against Adnan Syed, subject

Prosecutors dropped charges against Adnan Syed Tuesday in the 1999 murder hey min lee, a case that was chronicled in the hit podcast “Serial.” Emily Vitti, a spokeswoman for the Baltimore city state attorney’s office, said in an email that her office has dropped its case against Syed and would release further details about her decision later on Tuesday.

Laura Nirider, co-director of the Center on Wrongful Convictions at Northwestern Pritzker School of Law, who accompanied Syed when he was released from prison last month, tweeted: “BREAKING NEWS: After the result of the latest round of DNA testing, as in the previous round of testing, Adnan Syed has been dropped, now formally acquitted!”

Erica Suter, a lawyer who represented in court during her attempt to release Syed, confirmed that the charges were dropped on CBS News.

“After all, Adnan Syed is able to live as a free man,” Suter said. “The DNA results confirm what we already know and all the basis for the present proceedings: that Adnan is innocent and has lost 23 years of his life for a crime he did not commit.”

A Baltimore judge last month overturned Syed’s murder sentence and ordered his release from prison, where the 41-year-old had spent more than two decades. Circuit Judge Melissa Finn also gave prosecutors 30 days to decide whether to reintroduce Syed or drop the charges.

Finn ruled that the state had breached its legal obligation to share evidence that could have strengthened Syed’s defense. Syed was placed on home detention with GPS location monitoring.

Syed maintained his innocence for decades and attracted the attention of millions in 2014 when the first season of “Serial” focused on the case and raised doubts about some of the evidence, including cellphone tower data.

Baltimore City State Attorney Marilyn Mosby told CBS Baltimore in September that she was waiting for a DNA test before deciding to try Syed again.

“If that DNA comes back inconclusive, I will testify that he is innocent,” Mosby told the station. “If it comes to the two alternate suspects, I will testify that he is innocent. If it comes to Adnan Syed, the state is still in a position to proceed with the prosecution.”

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