Is he guilty? – a podcast takes you through the true-crime story of a Pak-American

Is he guilty? – a podcast takes you through the true-crime story of a Pak-American
Is he guilty? – a podcast takes you through the true-crime story of a Pak-American
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The News Minute| November 29, 2014| 02.52 pm IST

Crime TV shows are exciting to watch.

Some are fictional, some based on true stories.

One podcast, Serial, a show from the creators of This American Life has been following a true crime story over the course of a whole season.

This show created by Sarah Koenig, however, is different, because the creators of the show themselves don’t know how the story will end – because the crime they are talking about is being solved as they speak.

The story

Adnan Sayed, son of first-generation immigrants from Pakistani has been a convict in a Maryland prison  for the last 15 years charged in the murder of a 17 year-old Korean American girl Hae Min Lee, his girlfriend one winter day, on January 13, 1999.

Killed on that fateful day, her body was found on February 9, 1999. Arrested and given a life sentence for first-degree murder, Sayed has been claiming his innocence ever since.

It's Baltimore, 1999. Hae Min Lee, a popular high-school senior, disappears after school one day. 

Six weeks later detectives arrest her classmate and ex-boyfriend, Adnan Syed, for her murder. He says he's innocent - though he can't exactly remember what he was doing on that January afternoon. 

But someone can. A classmate at Woodlawn High School says she knows where Adnan was. 

The trouble is, she’s nowhere to be found - the intro to the first episode.

Today Sayed is 32 years old. But his lawyer in the case has quite a lot of data to support the possibility of him not being guilty. 

For instance, one of the episodes talks about the bizarre manner in which the girl’s body was found, by a man on his lunch break taking a leak 127 feet into the woods.

Each episode is accompanied by photos or maps indicating the ambiguities over the girl’s murder and more importantly, the girl’s murderer.

This new form of narrative journalism also attempts to take the listener through what could have happened that fateful day. According to Washington Post, the creator Koenig talks her way through the story allowing listeners into her thoughts in determining the innocence or guilt of the accused.

So far nine episodes of the first season in this story have been released. Downloaded over five million times, the show has been a huge hit worldwide.

Interestingly, the show’s creators have asked for donations in order to continue the story into the show's second season and to narrate to the world if well, indeed, Adnan Sayed is innocent or not.

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