MANITOWOC – After Teresa Halbach’s Toyota RAV4 was found in 2005 on the Avery family property, authorities established a mobile command center post while squad cars blocked public access on several nearby roads.
Customers of the Avery salvage business, the Avery family and television news trucks were restricted from the site by Manitowoc and Calumet County sheriff’s deputies.
Nothing out of the ordinary there. They were standard measures to protect the integrity of the crime scene.
But what happened next wasn’t normal or typical.
Authorities inexplicably opened their crime scene fortress to a few outsiders — the same people whose conduct and whereabouts around the time of Halbach’s disappearance was overlooked by law enforcement. As a result, records reviewed by USA TODAY NETWORK-Wisconsin revealed, Detective Lt. James Lenk and Sgt. Andrew Colborn of the Manitowoc County Sheriff’s Department made Steven Avery the sole focus of the investigation, at the expense of other viable suspects.”