BALTIMORE (WJZ)— Asia McClain Chapman, a key alibi witness in connection to a 1999 Baltimore murder trial is responding to allegations that claim she was going to lie to help her friend Adnan Syed, who’s currently serving a life sentence for the murder of his ex-girlfriend Hae Min Lee.
In 2014, a podcast called ‘Serial’ reopened the murder case and drew in millions of listeners. Host Sarah Koenig used the podcast to re-investigate the case and raised questions about the killing of Hae Min Lee.READ MORE: Women Charged With Arson After Allegedly Setting Fire To One Of Their Mother's Home
Since the podcast, Syed has been granted a new trial after a judge ruled that his attorneys were deficient because they failed to note the unreliability of cellphone tracking evidence cited by prosecutors.
During Syed’s post-conviction hearing earlier this year, Chapman testified that she saw him in the library of the Woodlawn High School the day Lee was murdered.
“He was very sweet about it. His demeanor. His actions. I couldn’t reconcile he killed her,” she said.
While the judge overturned Syed’s sentence on difference grounds, Chapman’s statements could be vital as the appeal process continues.
But now, two classmates of Chapman’s say she was going to lie to help her Syed.
Officials wrote in court filings Monday that the sisters approached the attorney general’s office this summer, after the judge ordered a new trial. The sisters gave sworn statements saying that McClain told them in 1999 that she would lie to help Syed.
Chapman tells WJZ that the sisters’ claims are “complete nonsense.”
In a response to the allegations, she details conversations with the two sisters over the years saying she had “nothing but positive and friend exchanges with them.”
Chapman says after the debut of “Serial” she was contacted by many people, including the sisters, that had no idea that she was involved in the case.READ MORE: Baltimore City Schools Announces Summer Operating Schedule
The three remained in contact as Chapman was set to debut her book, “Confessions of a Serial Alibi.”
Chapman says they conversed about a photo that was going to be in the book, but says she was unsure about who was exactly in the photo.
“As such, I sent a group Facebook message to both sisters, asking both for clarification on the matter,” says Chapman. “Unfortunately for me, the two sisters were unable to determine which one of them was in the photograph. By the end of that conversation they agreed with me that the photo was taken in co-opt class, they also confirmed my suspicions regarding the class dismissal policy, and we ended the conversation on positive terms.”
But their friendship took a wild turn five months later.
Chapman says she was contacted on Facebook by one of the sisters who has was abrasive and questioned her validity and involvement in Syed’s case.
Chapman says she was dumbfounded by the accusations and assumed the sister’s Facebook account was hacked.
“I immediately sent a message to sister #2 asking if sister #1’s Facebook account had been hacked because of the language and ideals. It was at that time that sister #2 proceeded to verbally attack me and she too blocked me, once I denied such allegations.”
The sister’s statements were included in a supplemental filing by the attorney generals office, who has appeal the judge’s ruling for a new trial.
Syed’s lawyer, Justin Brown says, “The State’s bizarre allegations regarding Asia McClain Chapman only underscore the need to retry this case ASAP.”
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“It has been with great dismay that I read these entirely false allegations from these two sisters and it is with great sadness that I am now forced to question the true purpose and motivations behind these awful and untrue allegations,” Chapman says. “I have never wavered in my recollection of the events surrounding the murder of Ms. Lee.”