In part two of his first media interview since the “Serial” podcast started airing, star witness Jay Wilds stood by his declaration of his friend’s guilt in murdering his high school ex-girlfriend.
The Intercept is publishing a three-part interview with the polarising witness who was a major focus of the popular “This American Life” spinoff by journalist Sarah Koenig.
The 12-episode podcast examined whether Adnan Syed killed his ex-girlfriend Hae Min Lee when they were teenagers in Baltimore in 1999. He’s currently in prison for her murder, but he has always proclaimed his innocence.
The Innocence Project at the University of Virginia is now investigating his case and has reportedly identified several alternative suspects. They are now aiming to test previously untested DNA from the case to see if the evidence will exonerate Adnan.
But Jay, who told police that he helped Adnan bury Hae’s body after Adnan killed her, said no physical evidence from the case will change what he knows.
He told The Intercept: “There’s no new evidence that’s gonna change what I saw: I saw Hae dead in the trunk of the car. If Adnan wants to take the stand now and explain that away, let him. But there’s no evidence that’s gonna change what I saw.”
There were some inconsistencies in the statements Jay gave police after Hae’s body was found, and the prosecution had no forensic evidence tying Adnan to the crime, but Jay is standing by his story.
“Anything that’s going to make [Adnan] innocent doesn’t involve me,” Jay told The Intercept. “Hae was dead before she got to my house. Anything that makes Adnan innocent doesn’t involve me.”
He told The Intercept that “Serial” portrayed him unfairly and that the reason he lied to police about some details from the day he helped bury Hae is because he was trying to protect certain people who he saw that day from being dragged into the case.
Jay said Adnan blackmailed him into helping bury Hae’s body in a Baltimore park by threatening to tell the police about Jay dealing weed to high school students.
He told The Intercept that he was initially unwilling to cooperate with police after Hae’s body was found and said Koenig “demonized” him in the podcast.
Jay became the focus of many conspiracy theories on Reddit after “Serial” started airing, in part due to Koenig’s criticism of his testimony. Throughout the podcast, there were moments when Jay’s story changed — details about locations, times, etc., were swapped or muddled — and this was supposed to be proof that Jay had something to hide.
“Maybe Adnan had something to tell [Sarah], something magical that happens that changes all the facts in the case,” Jay said. “But she can talk to him about that. I didn’t have anything to add. There’s no point in me participating in that conversation.”
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