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Channel J: ‘Making a Murderer’ is blasphemy

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Manitowoc, Wis. is a fellow Midwestern city, about eight hours northwest of Columbus, that I had never heard of. It wasn’t until I read spews of tweets on my Twitter timeline that mentioned the city — along with huge skepticism of America’s justice system — that Manitowoc entered my radar.

I read an article about how two petitions had gained about 200,000 signatures in hopes of legally pardoning a man named Steven Avery, a man who was wrongly convicted of sexual assault and attempted murder. I also learned that the White House had issued its first official decision-maker response to the petition. So I decided I had to give the “Making a Murderer” docuseries a try.

Now, I’m not a fan of intense spoilers, so I’ll only sum up the first episode of Netflix’s “Making a Murder” in one word: blasphemous.

I say the word pretty loosely, but the law is supposed to be sacred, right? Or it should at least be thought of that way — if you don’t want to be arrested, of course. This is why when Sandra Morris, a cousin of Avery’s, raised her right hand and agreed to “solemnly swear that the testimony (she was) about to give will be the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, so help (her) God,” and claimed that Avery had performed sexual acts in front of her without her approval, I was taken aback. Most of the evidence presented in the show suggested that Avery hadn’t done any such thing.

In 1985, at just 23 years old, Avery was charged with raping a local woman named Penny Beerntsen, which resulted in a conviction and a 32-year sentence. Despite multiple alibis, no physical evidence to link Avery to Beerntsen’s rape and, according to Avery’s father, having 22 witnesses, Avery was still convicted of the crime.

To be clear, I am not in the business of victim blaming, and it was evident that Beerntsen was sexually assaulted. But while watching the first episode, my gut — along with many holes in the Manitowoc police chief’s and district attorney’s reasoning for claiming Avery as the criminal — said that Avery was innocent, and the justice system agreed.

In the ‘70s and ‘80s, many citizens of Manitowoc resented the Avery family because they were autoworkers who seemed to be more concerned with building their own family’s community than merging with their farm-working neighbors. It turned out that there were loads of funny business happening with police sheriffs, district attorneys, judges and other common people in the city, which led to a conspiracy of sorts that aimed to keep Avery locked up, no matter the cost. So basically, Manitowoc was full of hatred, and so much of it that folks were willing to break the law, putting their government jobs and freedom at risk. When you find the logic in all of this, please let me know.

At the end of the episode, Avery was released from jail; current DNA technology proved that he had not raped Beerntsen. I thought everything was going to go well for Avery after being released. But the thought vanished just as soon as a police car flashed across my computer screen and the words “Do we have Steven Avery in custody though?” took its place.

I’d like to think that Avery has some justice in his future, but seeing that the series has a whopping nine more near-hour-length episodes left, I’m not so hopeful. But I guess we’ll see. The first episode was so jam-packed with drama and mystery that I wouldn’t dare stop watching now.


  1. Just remember, this show is NOT an honest analysis of the situation. Watch it with a skeptical questioning mind. The producers had a pre-determined outcome when they made this show. If you buy into their premise, you should also do a little research on your own to learn what they left out.

  2. This is the same DA
    A former Wisconsin prosecutor Ken Kratz accused of rampant sexual harassment says he was addicted to sex and prescription drugs
    District Attorney Kratz said, it wasn’t sexual assault because he didn’t “force her.” She was just a defendant he’d prosecuted. (You know, his typical victim.) He showed up to her apartment uninvited in the middle of the night. (Because that’s not weird.) He was able to sweet talk her into getting it on with “the Prize.” (You know, threaten to revoke her probation and send her back to jail.) In other words, totally consensual sex.
    https://www.wicourts.gov/sc/opinion/DisplayDocument.pdf?content=pdf&seqNo=113968 this documents say kratz said I will not cum in your mouth to one of his victims
    The agency that oversees Wisconsin lawyers has dropped three misconduct counts against a former prosecutor Ken Kratz accused of sexual harassment
    The Wisconsin state Assembly is poised to give final approval to a bill that would allow crime victims to sue public officials who harass them
    The bill comes in response to former Calumet County District Attorney Ken Kratz’s sordid story. Kratz resigned from his post in 2010 after The Associated Press reported he tried to spark an affair with a woman while he prosecuted her ex-boyfriend for domestic abuse.
    One woman, Melissa Ruskiewicz, told investigators she asked Kratz for help in getting pardoned for a drug conviction and that she was “freaked out” when he texted her asking how she would “please him between the sheets,” the Appleton Post-Crescent reported.
    A Calumet County social worker, Rebecca Hietpas, said Kratz sent her “creepy” emails, including one in which he wrote, “You can either flirt with me or not – you can’t have it both ways.”
    According to the documents, Kratz also boasted about his work on several dating sites, including Match.com, Craigslist.com and Singlesnet.com.
    Wisconsin DOJ The agency’s Division of Criminal Investigation last year concluded Kratz did not commit a crime when he sent sexually harassing text messages to a domestic abuse victim. That finding suggests the new probe centers on other allegations. Kratz was protected for decades by the local and state media and the Wisconsin DOJ and FBI allowing him to assault 15 plus women. Even state employees .
    Kratz never was charged criminally even with 15 plus women plus several women in his officer had been sexually harassed for years. The media and the Wisconsin DOJoke helped him assault women for decades.
    If not for the double standards of the Wisconsin DOJ and the FBI Kratz would be a registered sex offender

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