Serial: Is Adnan Syed Innocent or Guilty?

Throughout the podcast series called Serial, the controversy of the suspected criminal’s, Adnan Syed’s innocence arose. Adnan Syed was convicted of the murder of his high school ex-girlfriend, Hae Min Lee’s. However, due to the fact that there were many insufficient materials provided in his case, many viewers tend to think that Syed could be innocent, although others think the opposite.

Image: Cover Photo of the podcast Serial; Retrieved from:

I personally believe that Adnan Syed was falsely accused, and that the jury made their decision irrationally quick.  Syed’s innocence was first questioned in the first episode where the narrator, Sarah Koenig, states that there was no physical evidence that proved that Syed was the murderer. As a result, this resulted in the accusations to be based off of personal opinions and memories that ranged from weeks to years. Since his imprisonment, the investigation continued, and from all those years, there was nothing that determined Syed’s innocence or guilt.

Image: Jury’s depicting Syed as guilty; Retrieved from:

Furthermore, Syed’s only alibi, Asia McClain, has been writing letters to him declaring that she had seen him in the library on the day of Hae Min Lee’s death. Not only was this valid information, however, Adnan’s lawyer strangely did not approach McClain for her to testify for Syed on the day of his trial. All of which seems to be very suspicious. With this information, perhaps the jury would have considered Adnan’s conviction a little more carefully. Ultimately, illustrating how hastily the jury’s decision was made. On the Serial Website, they illustrate how on February 12, an anonymous caller tells the police to consider Adnan as a suspect which seems quite suspicious – this could infer that Syed was framed or that the murderer was someone else. Even if the caller did not want to be named, the site could state that or not place the word “anonymous” in the statement overall.

Image: (Left) Hae Min Lee; Syed’s ex-girlfriend, (Right) Adnan Syed; Retrieved from:

Moreover, Rabia Chaudry, a consulting lawyer, stated that there could be many reasons for Hae Min Lee’s death that did not involve Adnan Syed. After Syed’s arrest, another Korean girl was found strangled to death by suspect Ronald Moore, who has a dark reputation of being a rapist, murderer, and had escaped from prison thirteen days before Hae’s disappearance (Koenig). Inferring that Moore could be Hae’s murderer, in addition, Ronald Moore might have been the anonymous caller who accused Adnan as a suspect. All of these clues raise one thought: compared to Adnan, a boy who had no significantly terrible incidents in his past, Ronald Moore seems to be a more logical suspect to question.

Again, there are statements that do contradict Syed’s innocence, however, that does not mean that the audience should not listen to both sides and investigate equally, especially with such a fragile murder case.



Works Cited

Boboltz, Sara. “These Images From ‘Serial’ Bring The 15-Year-Old Murder Case To Life.” The Huffington Post., 12 Dec. 2014. Web. 11 June 2017.

Chaudry, Rabia. “Adnan Syed is innocent. Now find Hae Min Lee’s real killer | Rabia Chaudry.” The Guardian. Guardian News and Media, 06 July 2016. Web. 11 June 2017. <>.

Herbst, Diane. “Adnan Syed is Innocent and I Can Prove It: Lawyer Rabia Chaudry.” Time Inc, 03 Aug. 2016. Web. 11 June 2017. <>.

“Who, What, When.” Serial. N.p., n.d. Web. 11 June 2017. <>.

Msnbcleanforward. YouTube. YouTube, 19 May 2015. Web. 11 June 2017. <>.

ABCNews. YouTube. YouTube, 02 July 2016. Web. 11 June 2017. <>.


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