Ken Kratz's Letter To Steven Avery Hints At Exactly What Kratz Might've Wanted For His Book
After most of America binge-watched all 10 episodes of Netflix's documentary series Making a Murderer, viewers were clamoring for updates on Steven Avery's case and to hear the point of view of anyone who made an appearance on the show. One thing many enthusiasts didn't expect though, was for Ken Kratz, the Wisconsin prosecutor in Avery's case, who became the series' villain, to write a book about the murder trial for the death of 25-year-old photographer Teresa Halbach. Reaffirming the negative impression America had of the lawyer, Kratz allegedly wanted a confession from Avery for his book, because a tell-all with Avery admitting that he killed Halbach would no doubt make Kratz a very rich man.
Kratz told WBAY that he's writing a book to tell the other side of the story — Halbach's side. "Finally grateful to tell the whole story," he told the local news station. He said he decided to pen a book about the case "because the one voice forgotten to this point is Teresa Halbach."
In an e-mail sent to BuzzFeed News, Kratz said he hopes to restore people's faith in the criminal justice system, as the documentary left viewers feeling like the system completely failed Avery and his nephew, Brendan Dassey. "I believe somebody needs to stand up for the cops, the courts, and the victim by telling the truth and setting forth the vast amount of evidence proving Avery's guilt beyond a shadow of a doubt," Kratz said.
Despite Kratz's claims that his intention is to defend Halbach and her family — as he felt he did throughout the 2007 murder trial — he obviously has some self-involved motives as well. Kathleen Zellner, the Chicago lawyer that teamed up with Tricia Bushnell of the Midwest Innocence Project to represent Avery's current legal proceedings, tweeted a picture of a letter addressed from Kratz to Avery, saying that he wanted the book to include a full confession from the convicted killer who's maintained his innocence from the beginning.
The letter seems to be in response to Avery's refusal to confess and his continued theory that someone set him up for the crime. According to the letter, Kratz wrote:
Unfortunately, you only want to continue your nonsense about being set up. That's too bad, because you had ONE opportunity to finally tell all the details, but now that will never happen.
By the way, the difference between you and famous convicted murderers from the past is they told their whole truthful story to someone, who then wrote a book about what actually happened and people got to understand both sides. I was willing to do that for you... but if you are going to continue to lie about what happened between you and Ms. Halbach, I am not interested.
Kratz would have made a huge profit off the hypothetical book. Avery finally admitting to the murder would have also cleared Kratz's name, as a lot of people think he prosecuted and vilified an innocent man. Kratz even admitted that changing America's perception of him was part of his reasoning for writing a book.
"I want people to understand that, contrary to the thesis of the documentary, our criminal justice system does work," he wrote to BuzzFeed News. "And of course, in the process, I hope to restore my reputation."
The Wisconsin lawyer did tell BuzzFeed News that he would share part of the proceeds in honor of Halbach's memory, but he didn't specify who he would share the money with. Since Avery didn't cooperate with his pleas for a confession, the book will focus on what happened to Halbach and aim to convince readers of the state's case: that Avery is guilty of Halbach's murder.
It will take Kratz about four months to write the book, so you could have it in your hands this summer. There's no better poolside story than a former prosecutor attempting to convince the nation that he didn't put an innocent man in prison for life.