News & Culture

‘Making a Murderer’: Steven Avery says his family framed him for Teresa Halbach’s murder

"They had it all planned."

Bobby Dassey testifying at the 2007 trial of Steven Avery. (FILE PHOTO)

MANITOWOC, Wis. — As “Making a Murderer” subject Steven Avery’s post-conviction attorney, Kathleen Zeller, prepares to argue the case in the Wisconsin Court of Appeals, the now 61-year-old convicted killer is resting on a new theory, according to a recorded message to his supporters.

“My family set me up in this to get rid of me,” Avery said in a YouTube video posted May 3.

Avery says his brothers Chuck and Earl Avery were behind a plot to frame him for murder in the 2005 death of Teresa Halbach. He claims Earl enlisted the help of Manitowoc County Sgt. Andy Colborn and Det. James Lenk so they could take all of his assets, including a potential share in the family salvage business.

“Earl went to school with [Colborn],” Avery says. “So, I think they had it all planned. “Chucky didn’t want me in the business at all. He tried to get rid of me all the time.”

Avery claims Earl also denied him contact with their mother, Delores Avery, before she died in July 2021.

“I couldn’t call,” he said. “I couldn’t talk to her or nothing. “[Earl] said, ‘You’ll never talk to her again.’ They all said I was guilty, except for Momma and Daddy.”

Avery goes on to say Earl’s ex wife was also involved because, “she never liked me,” and threatened that he wouldn’t “get any money from that lawsuit,” referring to the $36 million civil complaint Avery filed against the county over his wrongful conviction for a 1985 rape.

According to recent court filings and other recorded messages to his supporters, Avery believes his nephew, Bobby Dassey, killed Teresa Halbach, the theory floated in the second season of “Making a Murderer.”

Avery is serving life in prison without parole. His nephew Brendan Dassey, Bobby’s younger brother, is eligible for early release in 2048.