The Case Against Adnan Syed (2019) s01e01 Episode Script

Forbidden Love

1 (FOOTSTEPS ECHOING) HAE MIN LEE: This book is open to those whose heart is innocent.
(WIND HOWLING) If you feel any guilt reading this, you should stop.
This book is full of my expression.
This may make you angry, happy, mad, or cry, so do enter at your own risk.
Dedicated to those who I love and love me back.
Do love and remember me forever, since I'll always love you all.
NEWSMAN: Eighteen-year-old Hae Min Lee disappeared on January 13th after leaving Woodlawn High School.
On February 9th police found her half-buried body in Baltimore's Leakin Park.
She had been strangled.
NEWSMAN 2: key details they had withheld as they sought a suspect.
They now have one in custody.
The police suggest the suspect had a motive in the form of a fatal attraction to his victim.
NEWSMAN 3: The subject is identified as Adnan Masud Syed, 17 and a former football player who is described as an A student, friendly to everyone.
NEWSMAN 1: News of Syed's arrest is met with disbelief by the community in Woodlawn.
They can't believe the boy who had so much promise now faces a murder rap.
- (BABY CRYING) - (DISTANT DOG BARKING) (VOICES CHATTERING) (CRYING CONTINUES) SHAMIM RAHMAN: Baby Sidney.
Yusuf? - (BABY CRYING) - I'm here.
(CHUCKLES) What happened to you? - (CRYING CONTINUES) - YUSUF: Sydney.
- (GIGGLES) - (CHUCKLES) Sydney! Hi.
Come, on Leda.
Where's your blankie? - Here.
- Benjamin.
Okay.
Eunice, you all right? You're all right, okay? Come on.
Want to sit with me? Come on, you can sit.
She's shy.
Yeah, he used to help me, too.
- WOMAN: He used to help you? - Yeah.
I'm sorry.
YUSUF: When Adnan went to prison, it was like a big piece of all of us had died.
We thought he was gone forever.
But then Rabia, while she was in law school and while she was raising two daughters, she was always there for us and she was still fighting for Adnan.
Adnan would've been forgotten by everyone if it wasn't for Rabia.
RABIA: It doesn't look like a baby's room yet.
Nothing's in here (CHUCKLES) because we painted.
But this will be the nursery.
I've got a couple of weeks to get it set up.
When Adnan was incarcerated, My older daughter In '99, how old was she? She was only two.
This will be my third baby, and I hope that this baby will get to know Adnan uncle in a normal environment.
These are some of the most important documents related to Adnan's case, and they're the ones that I've been carrying around with me 'cause I can't keep all of his 15 boxes of files with me.
This is a flier that I made at home when we were raising money for Adnan's second appeal.
( SERIAL PODCAST THEME MUSIC PLAYS) For years I've been saying to Adnan, we should go to media, we should go to journalists, because they can do things we can't do.
I went to my laptop and I started looking for a reporter who had covered the case in 1999 for the Baltimore Sun.
And the first name I came across was Sarah Koenig.
She was a producer at NPR, and I thought, okay, well, she's not in Baltimore anymore, but maybe this will work.
SARAH KOENIG: I went to go see Rabia.
She was surrounded by paper; Files, loose stacks, binders, some crappy-looking boxes, all court documents and attorneys' files from Adnan's case.
I didn't even know what a podcast was.
Nobody realized Even Sarah Koenig herself, I didn't think, went into this um, thinking I'm going to do like 10, 12 episodes on this, or it's going to turn into anything big.
NEWSWOMAN: Adnan Syed's story has captivated millions since the 2014 launch of the podcast Serial.
JULIANA GOLDMAN: The podcast was downloaded more than 100 million times.
NEWSMAN: Turning the Syed case into a global sensation.
RABIA: It spun out of control very, very quickly.
It just became a pop culture phenomenon.
Please welcome Sarah Koenig! You are the world's first superstar podcaster.
Colbert Report, Saturday Night Live, it was everywhere.
And I'm so honored and pleased to get to present this award to Serial and Sarah Koenig.
We did not expect Serial to get very much attention at all.
It's a ten-hour audio documentary about an old murder that I did not solve.
I personally went back and forth.
Did he do it? Did he not? I think Adnan probably did it, but this case reeks of reasonable doubt.
RABIA: Serial turned everything into a point of investigation.
NEWSWOMAN: Turning listeners into armchair detectives.
NEWSMAN: There are lengthy discussion groups on the website Reddit, conspiracy theories are floated.
Do you buy the cops are trying to frame Syed angle? Serial is what brought obsessed people on Reddit to the case, who brought new evidence to the case.
JUDY WOODRUFF: An appeal is now forthcoming, one that could lead to a new trial, a plea deal, or perhaps a decision by the State to drop it entirely.
RABIA: Serial was the first time that I was able to see the case from the perspective of other people.
What I realized then was that Serial, at least, was not going to be a story that was going to exonerate him, and that in the absence of a real smoking gun, evidence of his innocence or someone else's guilt, that this ambiguity would always haunt us.
BAILIFF: State of Maryland vs.
Adnan Syed.
Mr.
Urick, I know you have preparation, but if we're gonna get this through sometime this year, we've gotta be prepared to start quickly, okay? - Please call your first witness.
- Thank you, Your Honor.
KATHLEEN MURPHY: At this time the state will call Mr.
Young Lee.
Good afternoon, Mr.
Lee.
What, if anything, happened in January of 1999 regarding your sister? Um, she was missing.
I'm going to ask you to remember back to January the 13th.
Do you remember what happened that day? YOUNG LEE: Yes.
I do, um, at first we knew something was wrong when we got a call from my cousin's teacher asking us to pick her up from the school.
This was strange because it was my sister's job.
MURPHY: Do you know about what time you received the phone call that Hae had not picked up your cousins? - YOUNG LEE: Around 3:30.
- What, if anything, happened next? I called my sister's workplace, her best friend, Aisha, and I called the school.
AISHA PITTMAN: Her brother called to tell me, and the immediate thing I did after that was page her and then continue paging her, just worrying but not knowing what to do.
KRISTA MEYERS: I can remember what she was wearing and hearing her speak, because that was the last time I would hear her talk.
And, you know, she was I can remember she was wearing like a gray or black plaid, um, skirt and a white sweater.
And that just, like, stuck with me, because she always dressed up.
DEBBIE WARREN: I can actually still in my mind see it 'cause I have a photographic memory and that has never left my mind.
I remember seeing her exactly where I saw her.
I can see that staircase.
I still see her there.
After a while my mom was real worried and asked me to call the police.
OFFICER: On my arrival, I spoke to the victim's brother, and he advised me that his sister had not returned home.
YOUNG LEE: My grandmother brought down the diary that my sister writes in.
Then I found the phone number, then I called that number.
MURPHY: Who did you believe you were calling? I believe I was calling Don, my sister's new boyfriend.
What happened when you called the number? I ask, may I speak to Don? But after speaking to the person, the receiver, I knew it was Adnan.
- Who is Adnan? - Um, him, right there.
(PHONE RINGING) ADNAN: The day she went missing was just a normal day to me.
I think I had told her that day, I was going to go get my cell phone.
So I I called her the night before, and I think she wrote the number down in her diary.
I've never talked to a police officer before.
And when he called me, I was like I was literally high on marijuana and there's a cop calling me.
So when he asked me about Hae, I just remember kind of like, hey, did I ask Hae for a ride that day? I spoke to, uh, Mr.
Syed, and he advised me that, uh, he was supposed to get a ride home from the victim, but he got detained at school and felt that she just got tired of waiting and left.
He asked if a police report was going to be made 'cause I had told him the circumstances why I was calling him.
KEVIN URICK: What did you tell him, if you remember? I told him yes, a police report's going to be made.
ADNAN (OVER PHONE): Now I'm thinking, Hae's mom's gonna kill her now when she gets home because now the police are involved, and no way am I thinking something bad happened to her.
AISHA: I did go to bed worried, but at the same time I was like, well, maybe, like, she doesn't have her pager on or, like, she left it in her car.
Maybe she's with this new boyfriend and not responding.
There's a number of places that she could be.
MURPHY: Mr.
Lee, after January the 13th did you ever see your sister again? No, I didn't.
Did you ever learn of her whereabouts? Uh, no.
(POLICE SIRENS BLARING) SAAD CHAUDRY: You don't go in all areas in Baltimore.
SAAD CHAUDRY: There's a few areas you stay in, and there's some areas, if you don't need to go into that area, you don't.
TANVEER SYED: When I was growing up, some people would, like, use fake addresses to get out of the city schools and come in to Woodlawn.
ADNAN (OVER PHONE): It's a world of difference between Baltimore County and Baltimore City.
Literally, it's a world of difference.
(POLICE SIRENS BLARING) HOPE SCHAB: It's better than when we lived in Baltimore, it'd be two o'clock, three o'clock pow-pow-pop-pop.
The numbers of deaths have reached over 300 in certain years.
Um, unfortunately, having taught almost 20 years, I've had probably, I don't know, four or five students who have died during that time, Hae being one of them.
HOPE: Hae was my intern.
She would come in at 7:15 every morning and stay for an hour and a half.
She would bring her coffee in and do work on the computer for me or help me grade my papers.
She was like a daughter to me.
She always had some cute little outfit on.
And her hair was long and shiny and beautiful.
She liked fashion.
She definitely liked to draw and maybe that's the way she set her mind aside from all the troubles that were going on.
At the Museum of Art there was a Claude Monet exhibit.
We took the French kids to get a little culture.
HAE: April 1st, 1998.
I got this today, at Monet exhibit, from the French field trip.
I thought it would be cool to write stuff in here about my life.
So I guess I would just start with my life so far.
Why? Because my life won't be considered typical to most.
(SCHOOL BELL RINGS) KRISTA: Woodlawn High School was kind of a hodgepodge of all different ethnicities, all different backgrounds, especially when it came to the "Magnet" program because we were students from all over Baltimore County.
DEBBIE: We had our own curriculum, it was a lot more rigorous.
We were doing college-level work.
That included Hae.
I don't even remember exactly how we met.
It just feels like I, you know, always knew her in high school, but it was probably in French class.
HOPE: Her best friends were Debbie Warren and Aisha Pittman.
Debbie was more of the straightlaced and follow the rules.
Aisha was a great student as well, but I think she would be more of the one to break off and cut class.
But I don't think she'd be caught 'cause she was too smart.
We all cut classes, and it wasn't just the two of us.
Pretty much everyone in the "Magnet" program did, and they just let us.
Like, we were the "good kids" of school.
NEWSMAN: How about any school activities while you are here? Um, I played field hockey for two years, I've played lacrosse for two years, and I also manage boys wrestling.
- Hmm, that's a lot to do.
- Yeah.
Do you have time to, um, have a job while you're doing this? Yeah, I try to manage my school work and my after-school work.
AISHA: Me and Hae played field hockey together.
That's when we became friends.
Both of us were fans of sports but didn't really ever pay attention to them.
So, like, she was a fan of the Dallas Cowboys, but probably rarely watched an actual football game.
She liked the blue and silver.
KRISTA: She was just so light and bubbly, and it was really hard to be in a bad mood around her.
But if I had to break it down to one word, I'd say goofy is the best one.
AISHA: Whatever she was into, she was very into.
If it was her relationship, like, she would talk about it in such glowing, flowery terms, or playing field hockey or lacrosse when we'd come off in the huddles.
HAE: April 30th, 1998.
I have to write right now, so I can tell about the game.
We won! Dundalk was burning with rage.
I scored three at the beginning and Isha scored two.
What a great way to end the season.
LAURA ESTRADA SANDOVAL: I played soccer, and the lacrosse and soccer locker rooms were next to each other.
So then that's how I would see Hae, and we'd always cheer each other on.
But I was definitely always closer to Adnan.
ADNAN (OVER PHONE): I was never someone who really studied, like, too hard.
I just really enjoyed going and hanging out, and, like, I played sports and stuff.
But I was fortunate.
I had a bunch of different friends I would hang out with.
Adnan was tremendously popular and well-liked and well-adjusted.
AISHA: He was always joking with the teachers about stuff, just, like, confident in that way.
KRISTA: Because we came from all different communities, sometimes you went through the cultural differences.
Like with Adnan's family where he wasn't allowed hang out with girls.
I could never just call his house and say, hey, what's up? If I needed to get a hold of him, I'd have to page him or call his cell phone.
And a lot of families were like that.
ADNAN (OVER PHONE): You know, because that's just how immigrant communities are.
I can hang out with my friends until whenever.
My mom, really, she just didn't want us to date.
(LAUGHS) She's like, look, just no girls.
TANVEER: Adnan was always a good student.
And if you ask him why he was always a good student, he's like, 'cause I used to see you getting into so much trouble for not being a good student.
I didn't want to get in trouble.
We're a close family.
You can see old pictures of my parents.
There's my dad in his pinstriped suit and his slicked back hair, and there's my mom in her bell-bottom jeans and her floral shirt.
We joked that our baby brother was an accident, 'cause, you know, we were four years apart and he showed up 12 years later.
ADNAN (OVER PHONE): My mom, she's hilarious.
Like, she's a character.
And my dad, he used to do everything to make my mom happy.
All I know is, like, a solid family home.
When I was younger, being religious was more of like a cultural thing than a religious thing like hanging out at the mosque and stuff like that.
You know, kind of like identifying with my people.
TANVEER: But it's a really close-knit community.
The policing in the community was through what we call auntie network.
Like, I remember I was talking in Woodlawn library to some girl, and she gave me her number or whatever.
And by the time I got home, my mom was like, "Yeah, so you were talking to some girl at the library.
" (CHATTERING) SAAD: When Adnan and I would hang out, mostly we'd meet at the mosque, and then just do little dumb things that teenagers do, drive around in a car, playing loud music or something.
We both had girlfriends, and we had girlfriends that were our high school girlfriends.
We weren't able to have them come over to our house and hang out.
(SCHOOL BELL RINGS) However, we were able to hang out with them in school, after school, Friday, Saturday, go to the movies and whatnot.
On a Friday night the auntie network, they'd be chasing their kids around at whatever malls and busting them.
Red alert! Red alert! There are kids going to the movies tonight.
We must put a stop to this! ADNAN (OVER PHONE): Well, my junior year, me and Saad had just decided, yo, we'll be the first Muslim guys to go to our prom.
I was kind of like a scaredy-cat, and I was like, well, I don't I don't even know who to ask.
I happened to run it by Debbie.
I think I asked her if Hae would've been interested.
I don't think I would've had the courage to just ask Hae.
Debbie told me, yeah, just ask her.
And, uh, she said yeah.
They were both, you know, had my ear on liking the other one.
There was a lot of note-writing, I remember that.
(LAUGHING) And then my saying, okay, enough with the note-writing, just talk to each other! So high school.
(LAUGHING) But it was sweet.
It was, you know, it was young love.
It was it was cute.
(GIGGLES) HAE: April 27th, 1998.
Eek! 20 days since I wrote.
Oh well.
Let me fill you in.
School is still a bitch, but I'm surviving it.
And prom was the 25th, and I better tell about it while it's still fresh in my mind.
I wore this dress that's blue and sparkles as purple in light.
First, he dropped me off at Isha's, still not dressed.
I seriously freaked because I thought we were going to be late for prom, but he got his tux.
We took our pics, one together, one of me, and one with me, Isha, Becky, and Debbie.
I was so crazy.
ADNAN (OVER PHONE): She had some sparkly silver shoes.
It was like a blue dress and it was like down, like, probably like halfway between, like, her waist and her knee.
She looked beautiful.
HAE: I swear, he is like the sweetest guy.
Let me tell you why.
He was the prom prince, and Stephanie McPherson was princess.
ADNAN (OVER PHONE): I remember I was surprised when they announced me.
I was actually, like, super worried, like in scared, because now it would definitely be a picture of me in the yearbook.
When they announced Stephanie, it was kind of weird in a way.
At the end of eighth grade me and Stephanie we were kind of like dating a little bit, but not really.
We were, we called each other boyfriend and girlfriend.
I wasn't really sure, like, the etiquette was.
Like, well, do I dance with my date? Do I dance with Stephanie? And Hae had this One of her favorite songs was the song by the duo called K-Ci and JoJo.
And they started playing that song.
HAE: Traditionally, they were supposed to dance together, to my song, K-Ci & JoJo's "All My Life.
" I tried to act natural and not jealous, but it did kind of bother me.
But I took the pic of them dancing and sat next to Deb, who went on about how neat it is for Adnan to be the prince.
Ten seconds later, guess who dances with me and not with Stephanie? Adnan! Now, how could I not fall in love with this guy? Baby, baby, baby, baby Baby, baby, baby, baby ("ALL MY LIFE" PLAYING) ADNAN (OVER PHONE): I was, like, all about my hair (LAUGHING): in high school.
I used to use, like, a ton of product, Pantene Pro-V Shampoo.
I used to use the Pantene hair gel, and so I didn't like having the crown on 'cause I thought it was messing my hair up.
Hae was like, no, no, you gotta wear it, you gotta wear it.
She was, like, holding my arm real tight.
It was a nice feeling.
It was kind of like she was showing me off.
I will never find another Lover sweeter than you And the crown matched her dress.
Like, the crown had a blue top.
Someone asked me was she the queen, and I just immediately thought of it, I said, no she's my queen though! And Hae was like, aw, and I was like, thank God I said something smart for once.
(LAUGHS) And for you this song I sing And all my life And I remember our first kiss was at the prom.
My whole life, that was one of the best moments of my life.
And all my life Like, one of the happiest times.
(FADING): And I thank God When I came home that night, as soon as I got in the front door the hallway light went on.
I knew it was my mom.
I was like, holy crap! I hurried up and threw the crown and my tuxedo under the stairs.
She was like, "Oh, Adnan, where have you been?" I was like, "Oh, you know, just out hanging out.
" (LAUGHING) She was like, "It's one o'clock in the morning.
" I was like, "Oh yeah, Mom, you know, I'm tired.
" I'm going to go to sleep.
" HAE: Parting is such a sweet sorrow.
The moment he went out the door, I missed him.
I went to sleep and dreamed.
Since then, I keep on falling deeper and deeper into him.
He's the cutest, sweetest, and coolest guy, and he loves me.
The bad thing is that we have to keep things secret.
(SIGHS) But it's okay, 'cause love conquers all! (DISHES RATTLING) (OVEN BEEPING) - You want an egg with it or? - Mm? (KNOCKING) I think somebody's knocking at the door, Yusuf.
YUSUF: All right.
Welcome Rabia.
(WELCOMING RABIA IN ARABIC) You want me to make some food for you? No, I can't eat right now.
- You look jittery.
- Do I look nice? (LAUGHING) You look so nice, oh my God.
I'm jealous.
I wish I could have something like this.
Is uncle coming to the? - YUSUF: He said he's not feeling well.
- SHAMIM: Yeah.
When he sees something, you know, he get very depressed.
- YUSUF: It's hard for him, super duper.
- He'll feel better if he goes.
YUSUF: No, no, no.
Nobody has to know that that's Adnan's dad.
He can just sit in the, you know We can just put him in the back quietly and he can sit there.
- SHAMIM: Yusuf, go.
- I'll try to ask it'll be tough for him When seated.
when all the people are coming up to him - RABIA: And talking to him.
- Yeah, talking to him.
YUSUF: Like, he built, like, a bubble in order to survive everything that's happened.
SHAMIM: Yeah.
- Let me go talk to him.
- You know, it's okay.
If he's not up to it, it's fine.
SYED RAHMAN: When the pressure of Adnan came I actually took early retirement.
It was too much pain.
It is extremely hard, and you have to go through it day in and day out.
And you know that he is innocent.
Why? There's more hurting really here.
Tonight is the first time, um, really since 1999 that the entire community is going to get together.
You know, the first year there were a lot of meetings at the mosque.
And then he got convicted, and, um, you know, that was kind of the end of it.
People don't understand that when you come from Especially from South Asia, Pakistan, India, Bangladesh, the judiciary and the police are very corrupt, and people are terrified of them.
So it was a terrifying experience for them to have to go to court, but they have a lot of faith in the American justice system.
(RABIA SPEAKING IN ARABIC) I'm going to stand so everybody can see me, and so I can see everybody.
And, uh, good evening.
Thank you guys all for coming.
I know there are people here who have never ever met Adnan in their life, and I know there are people here who have known him since he was a child.
There are so many layers in this story that have caught global attention, and we're hoping that God didn't bring us this far for nothing.
When you are working on a case that you think is a wrongful conviction, you're only on one side and that side is getting to the truth.
And that truth is is there for everybody.
It's not just there for the defendant, it's there for the victim.
YUSUF: Something that gets lost in all of this is the person who lost their life, and that's Hae Min Lee.
She was born October 15th, 1980, and she would've been 35 years old if she was alive today.
RABIA: My prayers are always not just that Adnan's exonerated, but that God brings a truth to light.
Because that is justice for Hae.
NEWSWOMAN: What a mess the freezing rain left behind.
Accidents all over the place.
A drive through western Baltimore County, and it was more of the same.
You dodge falling branches on side streets just about everywhere you go.
It's been almost a disaster here, even though schools have been off, which has been good.
KRISTA: A lot of people in the area didn't have power, because of that big ice storm that came through.
So when she originally went missing, nobody really thought a whole lot of it.
We just assumed that she was with her new boyfriend.
She kept promising me, like, she was so looking forward to my 18th birthday party, which was the 15th, and obviously, she went missing the 13th.
(CAMERA CLICKING) I pretty much invited everybody that was part of our class.
(CAMERA CLICKING) I remember eating pizza, and I hadn't had a warm meal, 'cause it was, like, the snow, the ice storm, and there was no power.
(CAMERA CLICKING) KRISTA: I think it was like 8:30 or so, and Adnan came in.
But he and Jay and Stephanie came in together.
LAURA: Jay was eccentric.
Some people described him as like Dennis Rodman.
He had piercings and he listened to heavy metal and rock music.
KRISTA: I did not hang out with Jay personally, but Stephanie asked if he could come with her.
You know, Hae was the she was the primary conversation, but we thought, well, let's try to have fun.
Maybe she'll show up.
KRISTA: We get to the end of the night, and she never showed up.
(CAMERA CLICKING) For her not to call or page or e-mail or anything it was just really weird.
That's when I knew, like, something really had to be wrong with her.
DEBBIE: They started to look for her.
- (SIREN BLARES) - (INDISTINCT POLICE RADIO CHATTER) They had the dogs down in the creek looking for her scent.
AISHA: My parents were constantly asking me, like, is there any place you think she could be? And it was like, at this point I would definitely say something, I wouldn't try to protect her with so many people being worried.
(WOMAN SPEAKING KOREAN) LAURA: The cops were at the school asking questions.
HOPE: I was asked by the detectives, being that I was younger in age and close to a lot of the circle that she ran in if I would make up some questions that I could give to the girls to kind of ask around to see if any of the "Magnet" students knew what was going on.
Obviously an ex-boyfriend is going to be somebody of interest, and the only one I strictly remember is, was there a certain place that Adnan and Hae would go and hang out and spend time together, where they could be away and not be discovered.
(TYPEWRITER CLACKING) I said to her, would you please ask around, and she put those questions in her agenda book.
Each student had to carry around an agenda book, and it was the only way that they could get out of the class to go to the bathroom.
The teacher would sign off.
Adnan did not have his agenda and he really had to go to the bathroom, and so he said, Debbie, can I borrow your planner? He came to me and wanted to know why I was asking questions about him.
And he said, please don't do that, because I don't want my parents knowing my business.
HAE: May 1st, 1998.
Adnan is the sweetest guy.
I love him to death.
Guess what he did? He went out and picked up a single rose for me.
And he gave it to me in Physics.
Everyone was staring.
All I could do was just look surprised and just kiss him in the middle of class.
All day I walked around with my rose.
Everyone was telling me how cute it is and all.
I came home and put it in the heart vase I got from prom.
He's picking me up after SATs, and we're going to go somewhere.
I can't wait! ADNAN (OVER PHONE): I was so happy to have her in my life.
Like, she was probably one of, if not my closest friend at the time.
I used to make cards for her and stuff like that.
Sometimes I would come visit her at nighttime, and I would talk to her through the window.
Like, she would open the window up, and like, we'd just be standing right there.
We might kiss and stuff.
HAE: Me and my baby went out after school.
We dropped Stephanie at Garlands to get her car from Jay.
Then me and Adnan made out in the parking lot.
Then I went to practice.
ADNAN (OVER PHONE): Because we couldn't go to each other's house, we used to hook up at Best Buy.
We used to do that at nighttime when it was dark outside.
Or we would go to, you know, like a hotel room.
I guess it seemed like it was a normal progression of things.
I would just tell my mom I was spending the night at Saad's house.
She told her mom she was going to Aisha's house to spend the night.
Anytime she was actually sleeping at my house, he would always stop by, because he lived right in my same neighborhood.
So he would come by and knock on my window.
(LAUGHS) Neither of their families could know, so they had, like, methods of being able to call each other.
HAE: My baby's been gone since the 16th.
He went to Texas with his father for some Muslim convention thing.
He called me on Friday, twice, with calling cards.
Isn't he sweet? ADNAN (OVER PHONE): I would page her and then when I would call her, she would already have called, like, the weather or time.
OPERATOR: The current temperature is ADNAN: So when the call comes through, it wouldn't actually ring.
It'd just be call-waiting 'cause you could just click over.
- (PHONE BEEPING) - SHAMIM: I used to listen to the phone.
And he'd say, Mom, everybody's doing it, you know, all the Pakistani children doing it, but their parents doesn't know it.
But I said, I know it.
ADNAN (OVER PHONE): My mom, like, she would get mad at me, but it would just be funny to me.
'Cause she was always mad at me about something, right? But I've never wanted to hurt my mom, though, you know what I mean? That's why I would always try to hide stuff from her.
TANVEER: My mom and Adnan would go back and forth.
My dad would just be like, look, I just came back from work, and I'm tired, you know.
He's doing really good in school.
He couldn't be doing whatever you say he's doing and be doing good in school.
HAE: Do I dare to pull him away from his religion? Ms.
Salick was all up in my face about it.
She said stuff like, well, Adnan used to be so religious and strict last year, but this year, he is so loose.
Like I changed him.
And I don't want to pull him away from who he is, But I do know one thing; I love him and he loves me.
SAAD: Adnan would tell me about her and he said, you know, me and her are perfect, but she's frustrated.
She wants a normal relationship where she can go over to her boyfriend's house and have dinner with his family.
And, you know, you're in high school, so everything's so much more dramatic.
It's like Romeo and Juliet.
ADNAN (OVER PHONE): With her mom, it wasn't a strict game.
It's just that her mom wanted to meet the family of who she was dating, so that obviously wasn't going to happen.
Hey, what you doing? Not a lot Shaking and moving At my local spot ADNAN (OVER THE PHONE): On the weekends she went to go work at her uncle's convenience store.
It was right near Camden Yards.
Her mom made her go and live there above the store for like a week.
It was definitely a consequence of her seeing me.
HAE: I had fun today.
Probably the last fun I'll have before I get locked away for a week.
We'll survive, me and my baby.
I know for sure.
'Cause if I had my way You would always stay And I'll be your tiny dancer, honey AISHA: She talked about her mom being very strict, so that caused a lot of tension, and then also having a lot of responsibility.
She lived with her grandparents, her mother, her uncle, two younger cousins, and her brother.
ADNAN (OVER PHONE): Being, like, the oldest one, you know, she helped translate for them and things like that.
So she kind of felt like she had equal footing in the household.
She could do what she wanted to.
If I want to have a boyfriend I should be able to have a boyfriend.
HAE: Damn my grandma and mother.
I'm pushing Adnan away.
I can't get close, and he can't get close to me.
I can't believe things are about to blow up in my face.
(SIGHS) My life's a bitch.
Roses are in your country house We play guitar in your barn AISHA: She was always looking for an escape from what her home environment was.
Now that I think about it, I would drop her off or pick her up, but I had never been in her house.
Only like in the very front door.
I waited for you ADNAN (ON PHONE): I know sometimes that she would tell me okay come pick me up.
When we were in the car, I would say, well, hey, where do you want to go? She was like, I don't care, hurry up, let's just get away.
You said you'd meet me Out there tomorrow But tomorrow never came Tomorrow never came No, no.
She didn't She didn't like, you know She didn't want people around her mother and her family life.
She just These are my friends, this is my good life over here, this is my home life.
And, you know, school in general was a force of separation from that side of her that she didn't really want to reveal.
ADNAN (OVER PHONE): In public, she was just like a positive ray of light.
She was never the person that you would see down.
I think maybe being one way publicly but privately, you know, to go through what she was going through, I think that probably put on her a great amount of stress.
Sometimes she would get upset like when she would talk about her back home in Korea.
We were in bed together, and, like, she got really upset, like, she got super upset.
It was almost like a standoff almost.
Like, I'm at one edge of the bed, and she's at the other.
She was weeping.
She had her face down, she had her, like, her legs curled up.
I'd never seen nothing like that before.
And that's when she She told me, she had been sexually abused when she was in Korea.
And I was in shock, 'cause I'd never, ever experienced that, I didn't know anyone who had been abused.
I didn't know anything about that type of abuse.
I kind of had a feeling like I shouldn't touch her while she's talking about this.
So, you know, so I just kind of listened.
What was upsetting to her is what happened is the person never, like, got in trouble for it.
She was a young girl, this was an older person and she couldn't do anything about it in a way.
So just things like that that I guess I have insight in because I knew her, and, you know, even with me I didn't really get the full depth of it.
You know what I'm saying? Like, you guys don't know Hae.
People who have researched this case don't know Hae.
She did confide in me about that.
I don't think it's something she would've been willing to testify about, or if that would've happened, it probably would've been years later.
And she, of course, was never given that opportunity.
I suspect that that was why she associated her family with a culture that she just didn't want to be a part of.
Ultimately, at the end of the day, she didn't have an escape from that.
I mean, that was her household, and she didn't really have a choice to exist outside of that.
HAE: August 27th, 1998.
Now that I look back at the last five months, I regret it.
Why? Because I have lost myself.
All the lies I told my mother, my family.
Did I mention my grandparents bought a cord phone to replace the cordless in the kitchen, to stop my excessive use of phone? Did I push them so far that they did that? It seems like my life has been revolving around him.
Where's me? (SIGHS) Love hurts.
DEBBIE: Things were closing in on her, that's the way she felt.
And she liked to be free and open, and it reminded her of, you know, her mother's control over her, her uncle's control over her.
That had been so much of her life.
The last thing she wanted was that in her relationship.
That became more of a public issue when Adnan's parents came to the dance.
TANVEER: The reason they did that was because my dad didn't believe that Adnan was dating.
I don't believe you, I don't believe you.
He's not dating.
He can't get these good grades and be dating.
You don't believe me? You don't believe me? Let's go take a trip to the school.
I just remember her freaking out about it, like, he's here with his parents, like, what do we like, what And I just know that she wanted to get out of there.
I just remember that moment and him sitting there embarrassed and frustrated at the same time.
HAE: Okay, here it goes.
I'm really getting annoyed that the situation is going the way it is.
At first, I kind of want to make this easy for me and for you.
People break up all the time.
Your life is not going to end.
You'll move on and I'll move on.
But, apparently, you don't respect me enough to accept my decision.
This was definitely written probably the Monday or Tuesday after homecoming.
HAE: The more fuss you make, the more I'm determined to do what I got to do.
I'll be busy today, tomorrow, and probably till Thursday.
I've got other things to do.
Better than give you any hope that we'll get back together.
I really don't see that happening, especially now.
I never want to end this like this, so hostile and cold.
Hate me if you will, but you should remember that I can never hate you.
KRISTA: So this was definitely not their last breakup.
They got back together after this.
(SCHOOL BELL RINGING) You can't make logic out of a teenage life.
(LAUGHS) You just can't.
Teenagers are all over the place.
You fall in love, you fall out of love, you go back.
You think you're old enough to make your own decisions, but then you're not really old enough (LAUGHING): to make your own decisions.
And you make some choices that sometimes are good and sometimes are bad.
(GAVEL BANGS) MURPHY: The State's next witness is Ms.
Debbie Warren.
Ms.
Warren, will you step up to the witness stand? Ms.
Warren, did you become aware of any breakups in their relationship? They had broken up probably two times before their final breakup between December and January of '99.
Were you ever aware that Hae dated anyone else after the final breakup? - Yes, she did.
- Who was that? Um, Donny.
HAE: December 6th.
What's the matter with me? Every time I close my eyes, I see my baby, but I keep on thinking about someone else Don Clinedinst.
Why? I don't know.
But I keep wanting to get closer to him.
I'm going to have to get my thoughts straight.
I do love Adnan, but today I kept on imagining Don over my body instead of Adnan.
Don is what I would go for in my past.
Blond, blue eyes, white, built, sexy, and nice Camaro.
AISHA: They worked together at LensCrafters.
My assumption was that he was someone around the same age working at LensCrafters.
When I actually met him, I was like, oh, he's a lot older than us.
DEBBIE: I knew his name, I knew that he worked with Hae, I knew that he was 22 years old.
I sensed her just falling head over heels way too quickly, and it was just too much too soon.
She just came from a relationship that had the element of sneaking around, and she's doing the same thing again! ADNAN (OVER PHONE): I guess we were in the part where we were transitioning towards friendship.
MURPHY: Did the defendant ever discuss the fact of Donny with you? He told me that he thought that Hae was having a relationship with him while she was still with Adnan.
ADNAN (OVER PHONE): They portrayed it as if, you know, I was angry with her, upset with her, that the final straw was when I found out she started dating Don, as if she didn't tell me that she started dating Don, as if she didn't introduce me to Don.
HAE: January 12th, 1999.
I love you, Don.
I think I found my soul mate.
I love you so much.
I fell in love with you the moment I opened my eyes to see you in the break room for the first time.
MURPHY: Thinking back to the last day you saw Hae, January 13th, what was she doing at that particular point in time? DEBBIE: She was in a rush to go somewhere.
She would've come out of the staircase directly out of these doors, down this walkway and right there to her car.
She was intending to pick up her cousin directly after leaving and then going to see Don.
She was happy.
She was excited.
I was guarded and cautious and warning her, but I've gone over it in my mind again and again and again.
ADNAN (OVER PHONE): I feel like the day she went missing, we should've all, like, gotten together and, like, made a huge thing about it.
I don't know, just like we should've done more, maybe.
Maybe I should've done more.
AISHA: I look back on that and feel like I was stunned into inaction.
And I think it's just that part of you that wants to think that something is okay.
I don't know that it ever fully hit me that something could be wrong until her brother told me they found her body.
(PHONE RINGING) OPERATOR: 9-1-1.
What's your emergency? (ALONZO SELLERS SPEAKING) CRISTINA GUTIERREZ: The defense will call Alonzo Sellers to the stand.
Mr.
Sellers, please step all the way up to the witness stand, please.
All the way up here.
Listen to Ms.
Gutierrez who has some questions for you.
GUTIERREZ: Mr.
Sellers, let me direct your attention back to February the 9th, 1999.
Do you recall that day? Well, sir, you recall the day that you found the body in Leakin Park, don't you? That was a pretty important day for you, was it not? - URICK: Objection! - If you explained that I would know what you're talking about.
GUTIERREZ: Okay, now on that day you left - your work at Compton State College? - Yeah.
You traveled from Compton to your home by way of Franklintown Road? SELLERS: Yes, I traveled that way, yeah.
GUTIERREZ: And that's an area where there aren't any houses, it's just woods? I guess it is.
It's a park.
(HAWK SCREECHING) (ALONZO SPEAKING) (CAMERA CLICKING) NEWSMAN: Apparently a passerby discovered the body of an 18-year-old female.
The detectives and medical examiner were there throughout the evening trying to locate any type of physical evidence or other trace evidence.
(SUN SPEAKING KOREAN) (NEWSWOMAN SPEAKING IN KOREAN) (SOBBING) We just want to know who did it and why, because she's just a nice person.
(SUN SPEAKING KOREAN) NEWSWOMAN: Police are not saying how Lee died or how long her body may have been in Leakin Park.
They continue to search for the 1998 Nissan Sentra she was driving.
KRISTA: You know, I'm the one that told Adnan.
I said, you know, they found Hae's body.
She's not alive anymore.
And it was like a pin drop on the other side of the phone, like complete silence.
I just kept saying like, are you okay? What do you need me to do? Like, just say something.
And he said, is Aisha home? He said I'm going to go to her house, can you just call her and tell her I'm headed that way? AISHA: Everyone there was just sad and devastated, including Adnan.
KRISTA: By the time I got there, he had been there a few minutes.
He just kept saying things like they had the wrong person, like this can't be Hae.
He picked up his cell phone and he started calling the police that were investigating, and the lady said, you're going to have to call back and talk to homicide in the morning.
And he just kind of busted out crying.
In the days after that, it slowly sunk in and it was He was an emotional mess, pretty much is what I can boil it down to.
ADNAN (OVER PHONE): It was just really tough, you know, just to go through the motions of everything.
But it was like you had to, because, like, your life wouldn't stop.
HOPE: I remember crying with the girls, Debbie and Aisha.
I have a clear recollection of going up to Adnan and hugging him and just saying I'm so sorry, and I wrapped my arms around him but I got a very just stern And I don't know if that was a cultural thing, I don't know if I should've hugged him.
I don't know if it was something to read into or not, but it wasn't reciprocated back.
I think I took it a little personally.
We planned a memorial for Hae.
We invited her mom and her brother.
KRISTA: When someone close to you dies, it hits you hard, and it makes you appreciate life and it should.
Life is short and you should experience and live every moment of it.
ADNAN (OVER PHONE): Like, it's horrible enough that someone dies, but for someone to be murdered like, who could've done it, like, why would someone have done it, you know? Somebody knew somebody that I cared about well enough to get close to them that they would never breathe another day, and that, you know, it sticks with you.
It could've been anybody.
DARRYL MASSEY: In the 72-hour window after the victim was found, I will say there wasn't any particular person of interest.
I think the trend and the culture of everybody believing the husband did it, the boyfriend did it, if you get in that narrow path of thinking, you only hurt yourself in an investigation.
You really do.
LAURA: When we got news that they found Hae's body, we asked who found her body, and they said a hiker.
And our immediate reaction, I remember, is Krista was saying that Then who's this hiker? (WOMAN SPEAKING) I have nothing to support that he didn't.
Don't think he wasn't looked at.
I certainly understood some prior documented issues, but that in itself doesn't make him a killer.
It makes him an unusual person.
I always knew it had to be someone close to her, because strangulation always is.
You know, it's not the kind of thing a complete stranger does, unless it's a serial killer.
HOPE: Don was new to us, so he was a possibility.
And what does a man in his early 20s want with a girl that young? TYLER MARONEY: Let's talk about Don for a second.
And what makes him important.
TYLER: Well, you know, he's somebody who was very close to the victim.
It's our responsibility as investigators to go beyond, frankly, what law enforcement has already done and to consider other suspects.
- Rabia.
- Oh, hi.
- Tyler Maroney, nice to meet you.
- Nice to meet you, too.
Thanks for coming all the way to New York.
Oh gosh, not at all.
I'm so excited.
LUKE: The failure to investigate Don more thoroughly just really stands out as a major mistake.
RABIA: I never thought about him over all these years, to be honest.
- Why? - Because I thought he was at work.
We know that Hae spent the evening with him the night before, got home late at night.
According to Don he was supposed to see her after work on the 13th.
He says he gets home around seven o'clock, and when he gets home, the police has called looking for her.
The police don't get ahold of him until 1:30 that night.
TYLER: This is the first time that we know that Don had contact with the police, right? RABIA: That's a big gap.
Where was he? What was he doing in that whole time? Why didn't he try to contact her or call the police back? RABIA: In that time period, the police did start canvasing parking lots.
They even contacted Harford County, which is where Don lived, and asked them to take a look for her car then.
Nobody had bothered, not even the police had bothered to get his actual time sheets for that day.
These weren't retrieved until October of that year by Adnan's attorney.
When they also produced that to the prosecutor, it came with a letter that said that Don's mother is his manager.
His alibi was really his mom.
These things kind of cumulatively make me suspicious, but, you know, I have to keep pulling myself back, because I know that when you look at something in hindsight, - which is what happened with Adnan - Yeah.
people thought, oh okay, now that he's been arrested, oh, that was kind of suspicious and that was kind of sus But there's also the fact that there's a witness at the school, a classmate of Hae's, who says that she saw Hae before she was leaving school and that she had told her she was going to meet with Don at the mall.
It made Debbie suspicious enough of Don that she actually started kind of she wanted to investigate him herself.
And this is in police statements.
She told police she did this.
DEBBIE: Somehow I got in touch with him online.
That was our initial contact.
And he was eager to give me his information and talk to me and everything.
He was very open.
Pretty much everything after that was telephone.
You know, I just tried to find out how much he cared about her, what he knew about her disappearance.
And I don't recall when it was we had that seven-hour conversation, but we did.
It was spring break and my sister was attending College Park, she lived on campus.
I was going to go stay with her for that whole week.
So I had told, you know, told Don all of this and he, you know, oh, let me come visit you while I'm there.
So, okay.
I guess it was that evening that was the first time he had really expressed, like, romantic interest.
And it was kind of odd.
I didn't really know what to do with that.
But, um, you know, he made it very clear that that's what he was interested in.
And I guess to some extent I went along with it for some time, um but you know, I I did make it clear to him that I was not, you know, sexual that that, you know, not something Not something we were going to be involved in.
How that all ended up playing out, I just My mind completely blocks it off after that.
I don't I don't have much recollection.
I wasn't sure if he was, you know, trying to recapture what he had with Hae in some way.
(DON SPEAKING) (WOMAN SPEAKING) Well, I knew That was a learned fact.
Don't think he didn't go uninvestigated.
(WOMAN SPEAKING) Would a mother lie for him? Sure.
He could've caught equal attention that the defendant did, but he didn't have any phone calls come in about him.
It's the 12th of February, 1999.
I'm in the office and I answered the phone.
It was an anonymous caller.
An Asian male, probably Korean, said, "You should concentrate on the victim's boyfriend.
" Well, you know his name? Yeah.
And that's when he provides the name.
(KEYBOARD CLACKING) Once the information started flowing in, you gotta go where it takes you.
I write up my report and I contact MacGillivary, the primary investigator, to take this information and try to corroborate it.
DET.
MACGILLIVARY: Progress report, Lee homicide investigation, Detective Gregory S.
MacGillivary.
On February 26th, along with Detective William F.
Ritz, I interviewed one Adnan Syed at the family home in the presence of his father.
When asked if Syed had a relationship with Lee, Syed replied in a soft voice, yes.
However, he didn't want his father to know.
ADNAN (OVER PHONE): The only thing I was concerned about was just not meeting in front of my mom and dad.
And they were asking me questions, but they were just like pretty general and vague questions.
MACGILLIVARY: On January 13th, he had occasion to be at Woodlawn High School, however, doesn't remember the events that occurred in school that day.
ADNAN (OVER PHONE): If you didn't do anything, then what is there to worry about in a sense? I don't have to account for anything because I didn't do anything.
MACGILLIVARY: Syed indicated that he had occasions to be a passenger in the victim's auto, however, not on the date in question.
ADNAN (OVER PHONE): I know there's things that don't look good for me, you know, and this is one of them, but to be honest, I have no idea how to explain that then.
MACGILLIVARY: A formal interview will be conducted in the near future, - investigation to continue.
- (TAPE RECORDER CLICKS) TANVEER: That night I remember my parents were yelling at my brother like, well, if you didn't date that girl we wouldn't have this problem.
You know, I was like, Adnan, you know, if you have anything to do with this, you need to get an attorney.
He was just so lax, like, okay, you know, in this justice system, you are innocent until proven guilty.
ADNAN (OVER PHONE): I tend to look back on these things, and they have a little more meaning than they did back then, right? I wish I knew what I knew back then, it's like I would've taken it way more seriously.
Like, I have to account for what I was doing.
I have to be prepared.
Never in a million years would I have imagined that I would be charged with Hae's murder.
(POLICE RADIO CHATTER) TANVEER: In the morning, you know, I woke up to these people talking in the hallway, and it was a police officer standing in my doorway.
- (SIREN BLARES) - SHAMIM: My older son, he woke up and he tried to get up, so he push him back.
He said, no, you go back, because he was afraid, you know, he was going to see him handcuffing his brother and take him.
SYED: Unbelievable.
When a son has never given you a problem in 17 years, and all of a sudden, he's being told that he has done such a wrong thing.
ADNAN (OVER PHONE): They put me in the back of a police car.
I said, ma'am, can I ask you what this is all about? And she said, they'll tell you down at the station.
NEWSWOMAN: Eyewitness news was there tonight when family members first found out about the teen's arrest, an arrest that Lee's family says brings them much-needed peace.
RABIA: I remember the exact picture that I saw.
It's his black and white picture and he has a little bit of a mustache.
And you can't even absorb this 'cause I'm just I'm seeing arrest, murder, Adnan Syed.
He's a sensitive guy.
He's gentle.
He has no kind of delinquency record.
He's not violent.
He's just a kid.
He's a baby.
He's like my little brother.
ADNAN (OVER PHONE): When I got to the police station, they put me in like a little room.
I sat there for a while.
It could've been five minutes, it could've been five hours.
The two detectives came in, Ritz and MacGillivary.
They said, you know why you're here.
You're being charged with Hae's murder.
At some point, they mentioned Jay's name, like Jay told us or Jay's going to say that you did this or did that.
And I was just thinking, Jay? Jay who? The only Jay I know is Jay Wilds.
What does that have to do with anything? I was thinking, like, the charges would just be dropped, like this is some huge mistake.
Like, how am I going to explain this on my college application? Do people at school believe this? Like, it's going to be so weird.
LAURA: When they arrested him, it felt like they gotta have the wrong guy.
When you hear, like, he strangled her, if he did what he did, then who's the person that I saw everyday in class? ADNAN (OVER PHONE): Finding out that Hae died, it was like an unstoppableforce of, like, sadness and grief.
But then to be arrested for it? It's almost like there's a flood outside your house, before you can even come to terms with that, now there's a fire inside your house.
You don't really have time to come to terms with anything.
You're just trying to survive.
NEWSWOMAN: Convicted murderer Adnan Syed is getting a second chance to prove his innocence.
NEWSMAN: Syed won a motion to appeal and present new evidence to fight his case.
NEWSWOMAN: The hearing is scheduled to last three days.
It will determine whether Syed's conviction will be overturned or if the case will be retried.
- YUSUF: Man, Rabia I feel very excited.
- RABIA: You feel good? SHAMIM: Can you believe, I mean, three days will decide if Adnan going to come home or stay.
How important it is, you know.
YUSUF: Yeah, but, inshallah, he's coming home.
I don't know.
I just feel it in my heart.
NEWSMAN: Syed's bid to be retried hinges on two arguments: that his attorney failed to use alibi witness Asia McClain, who said she was with Syed the day of the murder, and that a cell phone expert, who helped place Syed's phone where Lee was buried, now says his findings were based on unreliable data.
Anyone can critique what you did, but we were working in real time.
You may not have dotted all the I's, but arrest, the bar is not as high.
We're looking for 51 percent for arrest, and a hundred percent for conviction.
("GREAT WAVES" BY DIRTY THREE PLAYING) Last boat, stand in a river Muddy river, how I love her Hawk flying is fooling his folly Gas hurricanes spray over Heaven Weeping willow