Jill Dando, an admired and respected BBC TV journalist was shot to death outside the front door of a property she owned in London on 26 April 1999. That attack, now 25 years ago was an unprovoked, frantic and messy opportunity killing perpetrated by an assailant who was on foot. It had none of the characteristics of a planned and so called professional assassination. 

A local man, Barry George was arrested and charged in May 2000 and found guilty and convicted on 02 July 2001. His conviction was appealed twice and he was eventually released on technicalities deemed as unsafe evidence by a jury. This was on 15 November 2007.

Her murder despite the evidence and conviction attracted a great deal of fanciful and dramatic speculation and conspiracy theories from the onset. These were compounded when Barry George was released, his innocence has become legendary. His supporters have always maintained that he suffered a gross miscarriage of justice. His successful appeal was simply that, it never meant he did not commit the murder.

The latest documentary, this time by Netflix is, ‘Who Killed Jill Dando’ available from 26 September 2023 and presented over three episodes. It presents a fair and balanced assessment of what occurred. This is reflected amongst the contributors, some of whom were involved with the case at the time, and others since that the media have selected to offer opinions.

Most of these individuals offer intelligent viewpoints, the most calm and measured are from Hamish Campbell the senior investigating police officer at the time. He concluded, 

“The guilty verdict in 2001 was the correct verdict. People like a mystery but I don’t think it’s a mystery at all.”

But those who are unable to supply an intelligent analysis just provide pointless sensational drama. Jon Roseman, who was actually Jill Dando’s agent at the time pretentiously suggests that anyone who still thinks Barry George was guilty, needs help!

The full story is often distorted but it should begin with where Jill Dando was actually living. She was in the process of selling this particular house in Gowan Avenue in Fulham and it was merely by chance that she was actually entering it on the day. At the time she was living just over 3 miles away to the west with her fiancé Alan Farthing in his property in Bedford Close, Chiswick, (image below). This was a quiet and elegant suburb on the north side of the River Thames.

This important relevance is rarely mentioned in the sad story of her shocking murder but it perhaps provides a clue into the mindset, preparation and limitations of the individual who murdered her.

Establishing that period in time and context the year before the new Millennium, her brutal murder took place less than a week after the Columbine High School mass shooting massacre in Colorado USA. The romantic comedy film, Notting Hill starring Julia Roberts and Hugh Grant premiered the day after her murder in the Odeon Leicester Square on 27 April. Locations within nearby Notting Hill had enjoyed the months of filming, it had brought a buzz, some excitement and special attention to the city. The raw horror and shock of Jill Dando’s murder shattered the peace.

The lead Metropolitan Police investigator at the time, Detective Chief Inspector Hamish Campbell and his team eventually tracked down and arrested a Fulham local, Barry George. He was convicted for her murder in 2001. He was later released on appeal in 2008 on the grounds that his original conviction was considered unsafe. That was reasonable in the circumstances but that release did not mean he was innocent of committing the crime. Barry George never received any compensation for the time he spent in prison.

The Met Police are still being accused to this day by some of, ‘not having the faintest idea’, who killed Jill Dando. Hamish Campbell, now retired still believes that no new evidence will ever be found. Barry George’s acquittal left the murder, ‘unsolved’ and that void continues to be filled with theories, all of which are pure speculation. One that surfaced again in 2022 is the view that another BBC journalist, Lisa Brinkworth might have been the intended target and Jill Dando was shot in error by hired Russian Mafia. Lisa Brinkworth had been investigating criminal activity in the fashion industry in 1998 and had exposed and upset a very influential French fashion mogul. She and Jill Dando looked very similar and Brinkworth also lived in the same part of London. There is no evidence to support this theory.

According to his family and supporters, Barry George was not only innocent but actually set up by the investigating authorities. It is frankly astonishing that these people voice such opinions because nothing could be further from the truth. Hamish Campbell initially set out to actually eliminate George from the police investigation but his bizarre actions, lying responses, the evidence, witnesses and coincidences would not go away.

Hamish Campbell was criticised by so called experts seemingly educated on a diet of crime fiction. The consensus amongst them is that Jill Dando was assassinated by a ‘professional’ gunman. The evidence suggested the complete opposite.

Real world so called hitmen are not the likes of James Bond, Jason Bourne or Ethan Hunt or the enemies of the state they pursue on screen. We believe they are because film makers convince us. The majority of folk taking an interest in researching gun crime have no personal knowledge or practical experience of firearms and the influence of social media often ignores simple facts.

 

The conviction of Barry George for the murder of Jill Dando was a shocking anti-climax. There was a sense of pointless unacceptable banality in the outcome. The interest in her cruel and shocking murder stupidly demanded that it had to be an international hit or a criminal underworld plot. This trend continues to this day, ignoring the historical facts and favouring a politicised fantasy. 

If Mark Chapman had never been caught and convicted for the murder of John Lennon in 1980 would society have accepted that such a deluded, warped individual could possibly execute such a talented outspoken and controversial living icon. Conspiracy theories would have taken hold attempting to convince us that John Lennon was silenced by an official, establishment operation. So many would have believed it. Some still do, convinced that Chapman was an ‘agent’. Before he murdered John Lennon, Chapman had no previous criminal convictions. It serves as an example of how difficult it can be for investigators and indeed the courts to understand these dark misfits.

At approximately 11:30 a.m. on 26 April 1999 TV presenter Jill Dando was shot and killed outside the front door of her property, No 29 Gowan Avenue in Fulham, London. Her killer approached her from behind, pushed her to the ground and then fired one shot into her left temple with a semi-automatic 9 mm handgun. The weapon, (which was never found), was not factory produced; it was either an activated blank firer or a reactivated decommissioned pistol. It had been fitted with a crude smooth-bore barrel and the ammunition used was 9 mm, (.380), short. It was a shocking murder seemingly without motive, carried out in a most angry fashion in broad daylight. The single ejected 9mm cartridge case was found at the scene and the fired bullet having exited the right side of Jill Dando’s head was recovered close to the front door structure which it had also struck.

                                      

There were no witnesses to the actual murder, but locals and neighbours provided statements linked to a variety of sightings that were thought to be related to what was noticed before and after the killing. Jill Dando was found 14 minutes after she was attacked lying at the foot of her front door by a neighbour who knew her, Helen Doble. Witnesses recalled several sightings and incidents.

Her immediate neighbour had noticed a dark haired man leave the vicinity of her gate, which he heard click shut and walk away to the left. He was aware that Jill had arrived at her property in her BMW convertible and he had heard Jill give out a mild muffled scream as if she was surprised to see someone; it wasn’t a tone that alarmed him or caused him to investigate. He had no idea at this point that she had been shot. A neighbour opposite also saw the dark haired man, walking off in the same direction.

A Range Rover had been doubled parked directly opposite Jill Dando’s house some hours before the murder. No one recalled hearing a gunshot. An ambulance was quickly on the scene and paramedics made desperate attempts to help her. The crime scene became inadvertently insecure and contaminated. Once it was announced that the victim was Jill Dando, Gowan Avenue was swamped by the media. The police had to secure a very messy crime scene as well as contain the Press The Met detectives had no immediate evidence or signs of a confirmed perpetrator and this immediately created a news vacuum and with the victim being so high profile, the media hungry for information went into overdrive. Speculation about a criminal underworld hit or an internationally driven assassination was suggested because of Jill Dando’s association with BBC Crimewatch. The media surmised that it was a ‘professional hit’.

As the official investigation progressed it was concluded to be the exact opposite, it had been an angry and disjointed opportunity attack. The Met police had engaged the assistance of the criminologist, Dr Adrian West in May 1999. He deduced from the messy and angry nature of the attack that they should give consideration to looking for a local lone obsessive. Many outside the investigation however continued to favour the far reaching and bizarre theories; the nation, (and indeed the police investigation), continued to be distracted. A substantial reward was offered for information. The entire country was in shock.

Known and admired through the media of television Jill Dando was everything we could see and what we thought; beautiful, charming, intelligent, a kind and caring spirit. Despite some tensions in her career she was happy and looking forward to her marriage to Alan Farthing and their planned new home and life together. As the high profile investigation continued very little was discovered and no criminal, political or terrorist organisation claimed responsibility. There was no hard intelligence or mouthing informers, it remained a mystery.

The investigation could not help to be influenced by media speculation which favoured a so called hitman. Like JFK and Princess Diana, an insignificant gunman, (JFK – Lee Harvey Oswald), and an incompetent driver, (Princess Diana – Henri Paul), were too simplistic to contemplate. The initial media vacuums did the usual, they groomed conspiracy and wild speculation. Forceful opinions circulated and influenced thinking. Based on personal beliefs and values rather than simple evidence, the events were so shocking and unreal the conspiracy theories appealed to many and still do.

One conspiracy theory linked Jill Dando’s murder to the NATO bombing of the Radio Television of Serbia HQ on 23 April 1999 in the form of a reprisal and in the style of another ‘media’ murder in Belgrade. On 11 April 1999 Serbian journalist Slavko Curuvija who edited the newspapers Dnevni Telegraf and Evropljanin, was shot dead by two masked men as he walked along a passageway leading to the front of his Belgrade home. He was with his partner Branka Prpa. Curuvija was shot 17 times, his partner was pistol whipped but not shot. He had been constantly harassed and threatened for his articles and outspoken narrative criticising the regime of the Serbian President Slobodan Milosevic and the events in Kosovo.

Curuvija had been very vocal and would undoubtedly have been aware of the dangers he was facing. Jill Dando was merely supporting the plight of Kosovo refugees but this was enough to create an imaginary link and a Serbian gunman conspiracy theory was born. The style of the two shootings were completely different.

On 7 October 2006 the Russian writer, journalist and human rights activist, Anna Politkovskaya, (48), was shot dead in an elevator within her apartment block in Moscow. She was an outspoken critic of the Russian Government and had received death threats. She had been shot four times, twice in the chest, once in the shoulder and once in the head. 

On 6 July 2021 Peter de Vries, (64), a Dutch investigative journalist and crime reporter was shot and fatally wounded in Amsterdam. He was a well known figure and very visible, he had previously received death threats as a result of his criminal case coverage. Two people were arrested, the shooter and his getaway driver. A total of 5 shots were fired minutes after de Vries walked away from a TV studio. He had received head wounds. Peter de Vries died in hospital on 15 July 2021.

Assassinations like this prosecute a sequence of events and they would involve at least two perpetrators, one in a vehicle providing an escape. There is never just one shot with the shooter merely walking off down the street. Jill Dando’s brutal murder did not mirror this theme at all.

Jill Dando was at the time living with her fiancé, Alan Farthing in Bedford Close, Chiswick; they were getting married in the September. She had been making infrequent visits to her house which she had just in fact sold and very few people would have known she was going to the Fulham address that morning. The police investigating her murder spent nearly 500 hours piecing together footage from CCTV cameras covering the route of her final movements. There is haunting video coverage of her going about simple and personal domestic tasks between 10.18 and 11.00 on the morning of Monday 26 April 1999.

There is nothing sinister or suspicious about her surroundings and there was no sign of her being followed home. The killer had either waited to ambush her on chance and or was frequenting the location as she arrived home. He had no escape route, he merely walked off down Gowan Avenue, no witness can recall seeing anyone get into a car and being driven off.

Circumstances could have been different. A witness could have seen the murder take place and come face to face with the killer. He got away not by guile and planning but by swift actions and sheer luck. It would seem the killer had acted alone and was a walking offender with time on his hands. He disappeared into the community streets and avenues.  The murder weapon was never recovered. If it had of been, soon after the murder it would have been possibly covered in forensic evidence, FDR, (Firearm Discharge Residue), DNA, hair particles, fingerprints and blood spatter.

If Jill Dando was killed by a so called professional who would have been highly mobile, Gowan Avenue was the worst choice of location. Her partners home in Chiswick would have been far easier to identify and log her movement routine. This cul-de-sac setting would have been a more suitable ambush site and any so called professional watching her movements would have quickly identified where she actually lived. A local perpetrator, close to Gowan Avenue who knew she owned the property but was without up to date knowledge of Jill Dando’s domestic routines would in their ignorance of detail have had the time to loiter and plot for, days, weeks, months. A walking offender who didn’t work who had limited means to stalk his victim and unlimited time to strike.

Think about this. If Jill Dando had been stalked and eventually approached by nothing more threatening than an ambitious autograph hunter where would they have chosen to wait for her?

One must consider that events like this murder are so rare and shocking most people have confused and convoluted thought processes about what is happening or what has happened. It is not a straightforward process. A high profile victim attracts attention and this creates a desire by many to be involved in a bid to assist. Witnesses can be notoriously unreliable and the unwanted help might hinder and delay progress. The crime scene in Fulham was unwittingly contaminated.

Barry George was initially convicted of the murder in 2001 but he was not an initial suspect. Much has been suggested that he was targeted by the police in their frustration to solve a celebrity murder; the public and other high profile personalities apparently demanding action and an arrest. That is simply not true. The police didn’t approach him until months after the murder because he was originally reported to them as Barry Bulsara. They only questioned him as a result of people persisting with calls about his strange behaviour immediately after the murder and the fact that he possibly fitted the description of the dark haired individual the police would like to question. They initially set out to eliminate him from the enquiry especially as Barry Bulsara, (who George was masquerading as), had no history of interest.

Once they ascertained that Barry Bulsara was actually Barry George the police were able to link to his extremely violent past. They were further surprised about what they discovered when a search was instigated at his home so long after the murder. Amongst the total mess that he lived within they found a a gun magazine, hand written references to blank firing hand guns, military paraphernalia, tribute literature to Jill Dando and an empty shoulder holster. They were also able to develop a photograph of what looks like Barry George wearing a military S6 respirator and holding a blank firing handgun. His defence argue it’s not him but the eyes and eyebrows suggest it is. They didn’t find a murder weapon which was perhaps not surprising in the time frame.

When the Dallas Police searched Lee Harvey Oswald’s rented room in Oak Cliff when he was a arrested after the assassination of JFK and the murder of JD Tippet in November 1963 they found an empty holster. They later found a photograph of Oswald posing with his Carcano rifle and his revolver. Conspiracy advocates insist it was doctored. Accurate forensics concluded it wasn’t.

Nobody involved in legitimate handgun shooting sport in the UK would have used a shoulder holster, they would have been laughed at. Only specialists in the police and military would ever have the need to use this type of equipment. The purpose is for concealment. Live firing cartridge hand guns had been banned from legal private ownership by 1999 in the aftermath of 1996 Dunblane massacre. 

Staff at the Hammersmith and Fulham Action for the Disabled, (HAFAD), in Greswell Street later testified that George was in their location at or around 11:50 a.m. on 26 April 1999. He had arrived in an agitated state without an appointment to attempt to discuss some accommodation issues that concerned him. Frustrated that he couldn’t be seen he left with an appointment set for the next day, 27 April. He didn’t return for the appointment. In the days after the murder he set himself up as a local community mourner, leaving flowers at the police cordon on Munster Avenue and asking local organisations and businesses to sign cards of condolence. On 28 April he visited the HAFAD to determine what time he had arrived on the day of the murder. He then went to a taxi company that he had also visited on the day of the murder to determine the same. At this location he also wanted the proprietor to remember what he was wearing. Staff at both locations were quite shocked and confused by his actions and demands, he drew attention to himself. When he was asked by the police 11 months later why he had done this he replied that he felt the police would be coming after him because he was local and he had a record of violence. The police were not considering that at all.

On 19 March 2011 Sian O’Callaghan was reported missing in Swindon, Wiltshire. Her body was found on 24 March. She had been murdered by a Swindon taxi driver, Christopher Halliwell. In the days prior to his arrest, Halliwell had affixed missing posters in the rear window of his car. An interesting behavioural trait that mirrored the actions of Barry George.

“Foxtrot Foxtrot”, the Dando distraction

On 28 April 1999 just two days after the murder two Met Police traffic officers, Acting Sergeant Mark Newman and PC Steve Cox were the initial targets of one of the worst gun attacks on the police and public in many years. Just 20 minutes into their shift out of the Hampton Traffic Unit base in West London they confronted a gunman after a routine stop. He opened fire initially with a 9 mm semi-auto handgun and later with a 5.56 mm assault rifle. Early in the chase which rapidly included more Traffic and Area cars the pursuing callsigns were advised of a possible link with “Foxtrot Foxtrot”, the phonetic code for Fulham.

Officers were aware that they could be chasing down the Dando gunman. This individual fired a total of 80 rounds, disabling 3 police vehicles. It was pure luck that he didn’t kill or injure police officers and members of the public, there were even school children on their way home. The gunman entered a ground floor maisonette in Feltham rented by George Knights. After failing to negotiate a surrender the Operation Commander ordered specialist SO19 officers to assault the property and Knights, the only person in the ground floor maisonette was arrested with no casualties. He insisted that he was not the gunman the police had been chasing. He claimed it was a colleague called John Paul who had escaped. This hugely violent gun incident naturally got the attention of the Fulham investigation.

Whilst Knights was on remand and revelling in his twisted notoriety he attempted to distract the Fulham investigation with false information about the source of the Jill Dando murder weapon. Nobody at this stage was looking at Barry George.

George Knights aged 42

When the police eventually questioned Barry George he maintained that he had never heard of Jill Dando before she was murdered and he didn’t know Gowan Avenue. Barry George lived very close by, just 4.5 minutes walking time. He rented an apartment in 2 Crookham Road, he was unemployed and didn’t drive. He was a regular visitor at the HAFAD and whilst there were several options to get there on foot the most direct walking route to this location was best taken via Gowan Avenue.

He was convicted for the murder in July 2001. The evidence was circumstantial, but this took a turn when it included a particle of FDR, (firearm discharge residue), that was found in the inside pocket of his dark coat. His first appeal in 2002 failed but he was successful on the second attempt in 2008. His defence succeeded in highlighting the poor procedures employed by the police in securing and protecting this so called evidence and the uncertainty of him being positively identified.

The image of Barry George when he was released on appeal in 2008 was that of a victim. Slow and lumbering with his movements, his obese frame had an awkwardness. Dependent on help and support from friends, family and his legal team he was the very image of a miscarriage of justice, he certainly did not fit the profile of the murderer who would have swiftly escaped from the scene in 1999. At that time however, 39 year old Barry George was lighter and fitter, he looked completely different. Despite being diagnosed with a host of disabling mental conditions he was extremely ambitious. Burdened with learning difficulties his schooling was a frustrating and unsuccessful period in his life. To escape this dull reality he moved his existence into his own fantasies adopting pseudonyms associated with glamourous rock stars and masculine real life hero’s, (including an SAS member), which he would link to fictitious careers. Barry George was very resourceful.  

He had unsuccessfully tried to join the Met Police Force in 1980 but he passed selection to join the Territorial Army in the same year, (but was released before completing his training in 1981). He would up to that point have received some weapon training. He then tried to pursue a film stunt career. He continued an interest in firearms and shooting and had attempted to secure full membership with a London gun club but was unsuccessful. Clearly his mental illness issues were stopping him from ultimately succeeding but they weren’t preventing him from trying. He had sufficient cognitive aptitude and orientation to focus on and pursue his interests. 

When Barry George was convicted in 2001 the jury were unaware that he had a history of extreme violence towards women. In 1981 he was given a suspended sentence for indecent assault. In 1983 he was sentenced to 33 months in prison for the attempted rape of 20 year old Karen Gray on a stairwell outside her mother’s apartment in Chiswick, he served 18 months. In May 1989 he married a Japanese student, Itsuko Toide; it was a marriage of convenience but 4 months later he was arrested and charged for assaulting his wife. The charge was later dropped. They were divorced in April 1990. Itsuko described her relationship with him as ‘violent and terrifying’. George was a disturbed and violent man.

I visited Fulham on 27 February 2019. It was a bright spring like day. The vicinity could be described as a pleasant London suburb. Gowan Avenue in particular, has an elegant exclusive air, the Victorian terraced properties are all well maintained. The Avenue is adorned with a mixture of expensive and tidy vehicles. The relevant neighbouring locations, Crookham Road and Greswell Street are surprisingly close. Whilst this was made accurately apparent in media reports, actually being there really does make a difference to your viewpoint.

When Barry George turned up at HAFAD in Greswell Street on the morning of the murder he was a wearing a yellow top, blue jeans and carrying a carrier bag full of written material. The perpetrator however was a described as wearing a dark jacket. George’s defence maintained that if he was the killer he would have gone home to Crookham Road, changed, picked up the carrier bag and used a route to Greswell Street sensibly avoiding Gowan Avenue. They decided this would take 28 minutes and that did not include changing clothes. This would mean that if he had committed the murder at 11:30 a.m. he could not have got to the HAFAD at or before 11:50 a.m. On that basis they argued he could not possibly have committed the crime. I have no idea how they concluded this.

I tried the route adding just 1 minute to change a top and pick up a bag. Turning left away from Jill Dando’s property at number 29 and backtracking along the next available right turns, Sidbury Street and Wardo Avenue to sweep back to Crookham Road and then routing back towards the HAFAD location in Greswell Street avoiding Gowan took 21.5 minutes. Turning left initially and then turning back along the other side of Gowan Avenue to Crookham Road and then the same avoiding route to Greswell took 18.5 minutes. That was all at a brisk walk with no adrenalin assist and I was 63 not 39. If George chose to jog at every street crossing, (not an odd action in normal circumstances), the time would be even less. I did exactly this on another visit and completed the full route in 20 mins.

Jill Dando laid dead or dying for 14 minutes before she was found. That is a massive amount of time for George to decide on an escape route even if the initial period was a frantic and confused moment in time. It was also merged with an element of pure luck. It could have been completely different. Nobody did a thing for at least 14 minutes. Even if it had been just 5 minutes a brisk to fast walking pace is 4 mph / 6.5 Km hr. In that time George could have covered over 500 metres.

Direct routes:-

29 Gowan Avenue to the HAFAD in Greswell Street  – 7 mins

29 Gowan Avenue to 2 Crookham Road                    – 4.5 mins

A court of appeal and an ordered retrial found him not guilty in 2008 by a unanimous verdict. Could he have done it however. His defence always maintained he didn’t have a motive, desire, a weapon or the physical and mental prowess to execute such a plan. Some years ago, a work colleague of mine, himself an ex-convict turned writer totally convinced me that Barry George could not have been at the HAFAD in Greswell Street at the given time if he had been the perpetrator.

I read some narratives supporting this and I firmly believed it. When I physically researched it myself, I found these well courted ‘hard facts’ to be completely false, the routes and timings were entirely possible. Anybody can do it at any time; the street layout is unchanged. Don’t take my word for it, go there and do it yourself.

Unofficially this murder remains an mystery, a much loved and admired TV personality brutally slain in front of her property for a reason only known to her killer. No one else has ever come into the frame, no hard intelligence, no reliable informers, no twisted political statement, no bloodthirsty underworld warning, no sick perverted claim. Nobody has ever been able to claim the substantial reward; nothing. The press courted with the professional hitman. So many cannot accept her death being perpetrated by a local loner. Barry George had both the opportunity and the ability.

Who was Barry George? The dark, violent fantasist perpetrator or a poor innocent hapless victim of injustice. We are all entitled to our opinions but we can’t invent our own facts.  

Jill Dando was on the front cover of the Radio Times in the week of her murder. She had also announced her engagement to Alan Farthing. Did this image serve to frustrate and antagonise a fantasising stalker who was then determined to create a grotesque bond with her forever.

The journalist and TV presenter Nick Ross, a personal friend of Jill Dando and her BBC colleague on “Crimewatch” came under much criticism for the open letter he sent to the appeal judges in 2008. He was always convinced that the killer was a local and violent lone fantasist. 

I would urge you to read his blog, ‘Who Killed Jill Dando’. He brings a fresh and compelling view at the circumstances surrounding the FDR – Firearms Discharge Residue found in Mr George’s jacket pocket. This is not actually arguing or debating the evidence but rather studying the mathematical probabilities of it being there in the first place. It certainly compromises the defence argument.

David Canter, one of the UK’s leading pioneer criminal psychologists describes the dilemma of the lone killer in his book, Mapping Murder. Set on a path of personal destruction, forging the plight he sees as a personal tragedy. Actions focused on a particular person in a highly localised setting, casting themselves in a catastrophic role. The victim takes on a particular significance, absorbed into their personal world. There was much concern about the motive to kill Jill Dando. It was only unclear to most of us because we are perhaps rational thinkers. In the distorted mind of the perpetrator however, it was likely to be crystal clear.

I would also advise you to read Michelle Diskin Bates book, Stand Against Injustice. Michelle is Barry George’s sister. It is an interesting and moving story. Michelle Diskin Bates has gone on to become a standard bearer for miscarriages of justice. I have established contact with Michelle but sadly she is not interested in having a personal face to face meeting with me.

We don’t need her to misdirect justice, however. She has taken on the ‘plight’ of the mass murderer Jeremy Bamber. She is now a respected patron and part of his campaign team. Jeremy Bamber was convicted in 1986 for shooting to death his mother, father, sister and his two 6 year old nephews. Initially an inquest concluded it was his sister, Sheila Caffell who carried out the murders; Bamber had successfully made it look like a murder suicide. He fooled enough people initially but was eventually caught out. Hugely frustrated at almost getting away with such an appalling crime he has always insisted on his innocence.

If you don’t closely study the circumstances you would feel sorry for this suave, articulate and very convincing psychopath. Michelle is perhaps a little intoxicated with her well founded reputation. She has accepted the part without reading the script. That is surely dangerous ground. 

A lot of people supported Barry George and continue to do so, firmly believing he is innocent. Additionally some influential on side writers and journalists have set out to dismantle the case against him and the circumstantial evidence that originally convicted him. It is fashionable to support the underdog. Their efforts are impressive because trying remove Barry George from the murder scenario is a big task.

Mr George himself will not distance himself from a crime he claims he is not guilty of. He still loiters in the back story. He always makes himself available for documentaries wearing his standard uniform; dark jacket, white shirt, red tie, seemingly fooling most of us, most of the time. His determined attempts are like a drunk man desperate to convince his audience that he’s sober.

As Nick Ross accurately states, the actual circumstantial evidence was compelling and the list of coincidences just won’t go away and they can’t be ignored.

Towards the end of my first visit to Fulham in 2019 I walked to the café in Bishop’s Park which is alongside the River Thames not far from the Fulham football ground at Craven Cottage. In the distance is Putney Bridge. Perhaps there is a discarded pistol, now buried in the mud at the bottom of the river beneath it.  A young man was walking towards me. Sporting a white T- shirt, we could all reflect on the script which read,

                                         “Don’t believe everything you think”.