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Brendan Dassey of ‘Making a Murderer’ asks for clemency after 12 years behind bars

Click to play video: 'Making a Murderer: Brendan Dassey’s lawyer speaks about legal fight'
Making a Murderer: Brendan Dassey’s lawyer speaks about legal fight
WATCH: The lawyer for Brendan Dassey, who was the center of Netflix’s ‘Making a Murderer’, spoke to CBS This Morning about her client’s fight for freedom. – Oct 2, 2019

Brendan Dassey, who was convicted along with his uncle Steven Avery for sexually assaulting and killing photographer Teresa Halbach in Wisconsin, is asking for clemency in a case made famous by Netflix’s Making a Murderer docuseries.

Dassey was 15 years old when Halbach’s burned remains were found at Avery’s salvage yard in Manitowoc County, Wis., in 2005. Dassey and Avery were convicted and sentenced to life in prison for her murder two years later.

Now, on the verge of his 30th birthday, Dassey is throwing himself on the mercy of the state’s governor after serving nearly 13 years in prison for first-degree murder and sexual assault.

“We’re filing a petition for executive clemency with Governor Tony Evers of Wisconsin,” Dassey’s attorney, Laura Nirider, told CBS News on Tuesday. “This is his best shot, and the moment is now.”

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Dassey’s team has exhausted all legal options in his case, including a failed attempt to appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court. Now, they’re trying to win his freedom by garnering public support through TV appearances, magazine interviews, press conferences and podcast chats, in hopes of swaying Evers to their cause.

“It’s really a coalition of voices that are calling on the governor just to take a close review of this case — watch the videotapes, read the records,” Nirider said.

Making a Murderer became a pop-culture phenomenon in 2015. The docuseries focused primarily on Avery, who was wrongfully convicted of sexual assault in 1985 and imprisoned until his name was cleared in 2003.

Dassey was accused of helping Avery kill Halbach two years later, and the pair were convicted at a trial in 2007.

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The Netflix series casts doubt on the 2007 verdict, particularly in the case of Dassey.

The series included footage of police interviewing Dassey shortly after the murder, in which the then-teenager appears overwhelmed by the officers’ line of questioning.

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Dassey, who has intellectual limitations, was interviewed four times within 48 hours without a lawyer or parent present. He eventually confessed to helping Avery sexually assault and murder Halbach. However, his defenders argue he was coerced into the confession, which he quickly recanted.

WATCH: Steven Avery’s cellmate describes him as ‘disgusting’

Click to play video: 'Steven Avery’s cellmate: ‘He is a disgusting human being’'
Steven Avery’s cellmate: ‘He is a disgusting human being’

A jury convicted Dassey based on the confession. Authorities did not present any physical evidence tying him to the crime.

Dassey describes the allegedly false confession in an interview with podcaster Jason Flom, which was released on Wednesday.

“I just wanted it all over with, so I said whatever they wanted to hear,” he said.

Avery and his legal team have been waging a separate campaign to prove he is innocent.

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Gov. Evers restarted the state’s pardons board this year after his predecessor, Republican Scott Walker, stopped it. However, Evers has said applicants must have completed their entire sentences, and that he won’t consider commuting a sentence.

Evers has not commented on Dassey’s request, and has not taken action in any pardon cases yet.

Dassey is not eligible for parole until 2048.

He turns 30 on Oct. 19.

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