Judge: Brendan Dassey must be released by Friday

PORTAGE, WIS. - A federal judge has ordered Brendan Dassey to be released from prison by 8 p.m. on Friday.

The ruling by U.S. Magistrate William Duffin comes one day after the Wisconsin Department of Justice filed a motion seeking to prevent Dassey's release from Columbia Correctional Institution in Portage.

Duffin on Monday ordered that Dassey be conditionally released while the state appeals his August decision to overturn Dassey's conviction. In the aftermath of Wednesday's decision, Attorney General Brad Schimel announced that the state will file an emergency motion with the Seventh Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals in Chicago by the end of the work day to stay Duffin's order.

Duffin, in his order Wednesday, wrote: "In the motion to stay the respondent largely reargues the same points already considered and rejected by the court in deciding Dassey’s motion for release. The court finds that reconsideration of these arguments yields the same conclusion. The respondent’s motion to stay is denied."

Duffin also wrote that the U.S. Probation Office had informed him that it approved Dassey's proposed residence and "completed all further pre-release investigation it deemed necessary."

In August, Duffin overturned Dassey's conviction in the 2005 homicide of Teresa Halbach.

Prosecutors also said in Tuesday's motion that they would be filing an emergency motion with the Seventh Circuit by the end of the work day on Wednesday. The DOJ reiterated its plans for filing an additional emergency motion in a news release Wednesday.

"Attorney General Brad Schimel will file an emergency motion today in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit seeking a stay of this release order and requesting relief by Friday, November 18, 2016," the DOJ said in its release.

In anticipation of his release, news organizations lined up Tuesday across the street from the combination maximum-minimum security prison about 40 miles north of Madison.

Those following the case online have taken to social media to celebrate the order for his release, some incorrectly thinking he has already been freed.

USA Today


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