BALTIMORE — A judge has overturned Adnan Syed’s 1999 murder conviction after finally checking out 2014’s Serial, a wildly popular podcast that focused on the details of his case.
“Wow, you guys weren’t kidding, what a great show this is,” said Baltimore Circuit Judge Melissa Phinn, who said she’s been meaning to check the show out since it premiered to great acclaim in the fall of 2014. “I haven’t finished the first season yet, but it’s getting really good, and I just figured I’d release Adnan out to house arrest until I get a little further into it. I thought it would make me feel better as I listened to the rest of the episodes.”
“How does it end?” she asked. “Wait, no, don’t tell me!”
Local prosecutors were disturbed by the unprecedented legal action that was largely informed by the judge listening to a podcast.
“Let me get this straight, she’s just now getting into Serial?” asked Victor Cobb, an outraged member of the local district attorney’s office. “What are we going to do if she goes on some true crime kick? Just re-legislate every case that gets a semi-popular podcast going? This can’t be the basis of our legal system, it just can’t. It could really screw up the 95% guilty plea rate we have going if people started believing they had a chance around here.”
Producers of the influential Serial podcast were excited to hear of the impact their show had made, even if it was well after its initial release.
“Wow, this is probably the best case scenario for the show we made,” said Sarah Koenig, host and producer of Serial. “Well, I mean, it would have been cool if Judge Phinn had checked it out back when it came out, left us a review or something. Hell, we might’ve got Adnan out even sooner, but that’s okay. As anyone who’s ever had a podcast can tell you, it’s just cool to find out one person listened, you know? Can someone tell the judge we did two more seasons after that?”
As of press time, an excited Judge Phinn was seen getting mic’d up to appear on an upcoming special episode of HBO’s The Case Against Adnan Syed.