According to ABC News, Adnan Syed was ordered to be released by a judge on Monday. His case recently was the subject of news inquiry because new evidence, including new suspects, came forward as the result of investigation. Syed’s case was featured on the podcast “Serial,” bringing it to the forefront.

Syed was convicted of killing his ex-girlfriend Hae Min Lee when they were both in high school. His case was featured on the first season of “Serial.”

Here is a brief timeline of events related to the death of Hae Min Lee.

Jan. 13, 1999

According to The New York Times, Lee disappeared after leaving school. Lee died by manual strangulation.

Feb. 9, 1999

According to Harper’s Bazaar, Lee’s body was found in Baltimore’s Leakin Park.

Feb. 28, 1999

The Washington Post reported that Syed was arrested in conjunction with Lee’s murder. Syed had dated Lee in high school. At the time of Lee’s death, Syed and Lee were both seniors at Woodlawn High School in Baltimore, Maryland.

Dec. 15, 1999

Harper’s Bazaar reported that Syed’s first trial ended in a mistrial: “After jurors accidentally overheard an exchange in which the judge called Syed’s attorney Cristina Gutierrez ‘a liar,’ a mistrial was declared.”


According to the podcast “Serial,” Syed’s second trial ensued and Syed was convicted on Feb. 25, 2000. He was convicted on the basis of a witness testimony and cellphone data.

March 19, 2003

According to an opinion filed on March 19, 2003, in the Court of Special Appeals of Maryland, Syed’s request for an appeal was denied by the court. The opinion began, “The state’s evidence was sufficient to prove that appellant committed those offenses.” The opinion relied on the witness testimony of Jay Wilds as evidence that Syed committed the murder.

Nov. 6, 2015-March 9, 2019

BBC reported that the podcast “Serial” led to new evidence emerging in the case. On the basis of this new evidence, Syed was granted a new trial. Some of the evidence presented in the podcast was used in this new trial, including evidence for an alibi. Harper’s Bazaar reported that during the 2016 hearing, new evidence emerged that caused the judge to vacate Syed’s conviction in 2018. Then, in 2019, Syed’s conviction was upheld.

Sept. 19, 2022

Syed’s conviction was vacated. The New York Times reported that the prosecution has 30 days to proceed with a new trial or must drop the charges against Syed. Syed was put on home arrest until this 30-day period ends. The prosecution allegedly has found two new suspects, but neither of these suspects are known to the public.

Sept. 20, 2022

Serial released a new podcast episode with updates on the case. The New York Post reported that Lee’s family released a statement about the latest updates. The family’s attorney stated, “They just wanted to be given specific reasons why it was appropriate to vacate this conviction, but what they got instead is a bunch of general vague assertions that basically boiled down to, ‘Trust us. We, the State Attorney’s Office, believe that there is a problem with this conviction.’ And for the family, that doesn’t cut it.”

As of Tuesday, the family has not announced if it will file an appeal.

Oct. 11, 2022

The prosecution dropped all charges against Syed after additional DNA testing excluded him as a suspect, according to The Associated Press.

March 28, 2023

Syed’s conviction was reinstated, but he won’t go into custody, per NPR.