The Murder of Jill Dando

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SgtPepper
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The Murder of Jill Dando

Post by SgtPepper »

Very disappointing "new" documentary shown on the BBC on April 2nd. Told us very little we didn't know already, and the detective inspector made himself look very stupid. He should have stayed away.

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Re: The Murder of Jill Dando

Post by Nick Cooper 625 »

SgtPepper wrote:Very disappointing "new" documentary shown on the BBC on April 2nd. Told us very little we didn't know already, and the detective inspector made himself look very stupid. He should have stayed away.
I haven't watched it yet, but it's probably one of those cases where the desire to make a programme (no doubt strong at the BBC for the obvious reasons) doesn't live up to the material available.
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Re: The Murder of Jill Dando

Post by fatcat »

SgtPepper wrote:Very disappointing "new" documentary shown on the BBC on April 2nd. Told us very little we didn't know already, and the detective inspector made himself look very stupid. He should have stayed away.

Oh yes thoroughly agree. My concerns were confirmed when the first name on the credits was 'the composer'...somebody had made a piece of art out of a contemporary unsolved murder and showing 'lovely' images of Jill Dando is not going to solve it or encourage memories for further precious evidence. IMHO

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Re: The Murder of Jill Dando

Post by brigham »

There are lots of fantastic theories about this dreadful event, many of them invoking supernatural or q'abalistic forces.
It's time for a down-to-earth account of the actual events as we know them, to try and get to the bottom of an ugly, but essentially human, crime.

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Re: The Murder of Jill Dando

Post by jeffcv »

Very unhappy with this programme, it needed an extra half hour for the reasons below.

Minor quibble: no mention of her fiance Alan Farthing, although it was briefly mentioned that she was living in Chiswick and not at her old home that she was trying to sell when she was killed.
Major gripes:
Surely the police wouldn't have heard any leads from the Serbian secret service, so why was this mentioned? No mention either that Jill had not long before presented an appeal for Ex-Yugoslav victims of Serbian war. In court the Serbian theory was poo-pooed because the Serbians hadn't claimed responsibility, but they wouldn't, they weren't the IRA. The death of BBC broadcaster Markov in 1978 with a poisoned umbrella was straight out of the Avengers, but we accept that happened so it's much less ridiculous to disguise a single shot gun as a mobile phone (two decades ago mobiles were chunkier than today's smartphones). Witnesses saw a smartly dressed man using a phone - but mobile records couldn't find a call which matched - ie he was pretending and it wan't a phone! There was no mention at all of this in the programme.
Reading between the lines, the policeman seemed to be indicating that he thought that it was George, but it couldn't be proved. The reason George, never really smartly dressed, was trying to establish a false alibi on the following day was because on a previous occasion he'd been arrested for a crime in the vicinity he hadn't done, so, for his personality type, he felt (very justifiably) rather paranoid.
The scrapbooks in the attic showed how much Jill was featured in the press, so the fact that amongst multiple publications Barry owned a copy of Ariel with Jill on the cover had absolutely no significance - so why was this shown?
The forensic expert had established that over a course of a year it was possible for the pocket of a coat worn in London to pick up a single particle of the matching type of gunshot residue. What wasn't answered was how much residue would you expect to find in the coat of a gunshooter after a year? I would hazard a guess at considerably more, but honestly don't know. Have experiments been carried out to estimate a figure?
Nick Ross was convinced at the time of his initial conviction that George was the killer, but has since backtracked to an extent. Certainly it does seem that criminals regarded their crime being featured on Crimewatch as a badge of honour, so would be highly unlikely to seek retribution.

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Re: The Murder of Jill Dando

Post by fatcat »

jeffcv wrote: Nick Ross was convinced at the time of his initial conviction that George was the killer, but has since backtracked to an extent. Certainly it does seem that criminals regarded their crime being featured on Crimewatch as a badge of honour, so would be highly unlikely to seek retribution.
Perhaps he had thought the unthinkable - a professional contract killer who prided himself on discretion and getting his subject no matter what the environment and leaving no trace..such a contract would have cost a lot of money- but no problem for an adversary in the TV industry.

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Re: The Murder of Jill Dando

Post by SgtPepper »

I think a lot of Nick Ross's comments were very odd. He said something like it made no sense that someone would be murdered as the result of a crime programme, why not the holiday programme. It doesn't have to be an organised underworld organisation. One mentally unstable criminal that she helped to convict is rather more probably than someone who booked a holiday on her recommendation and had rain every day.

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Re: The Murder of Jill Dando

Post by fatcat »

You could also say that Shaw Taylor (once the lone face of TV crime investigation) merrily presented Police 5 for decades, apparently drawing no malice or threats of retribution from his subjects...but perhaps in those days they understood he was just a jobbing presenter working with information supplied to his programme researchers/producers and not Lady Justice?

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Re: The Murder of Jill Dando

Post by SgtPepper »

The fact that Roger Cook is still alive tends to weaken the revenge theory a bit, but it only takes one nutter.

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Re: The Murder of Jill Dando

Post by Simon36 »

fatcat wrote:
SgtPepper wrote:Very disappointing "new" documentary shown on the BBC on April 2nd. Told us very little we didn't know already, and the detective inspector made himself look very stupid. He should have stayed away.

Oh yes thoroughly agree. My concerns were confirmed when the first name on the credits was 'the composer'...somebody had made a piece of art out of a contemporary unsolved murder and showing 'lovely' images of Jill Dando is not going to solve it or encourage memories for further precious evidence. IMHO

So are you saying it shouldn’t have had music?

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Re: The Murder of Jill Dando

Post by fatcat »

Simon36 wrote:

So are you saying it shouldn’t have had music?
Not necessarily, but I got the impression (when I saw the composer as the first credit), that the priority had been to make a 'nice' programme rather than concentrate on the very serious business of an unsolved murder....Obviously just a first impression which I may have totally misjudged and if the prog stimulates any new lines of inquiry then it obviously has worked.

I was perhaps using the old stuff like World in Action as a yardstick and it's treatments of the unsolved murders of Enrico Sidoli and Hilda Murrell , which didn't lead to any convictions anyway but perhaps remain a valuable reference for any new lines of inquiry?

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Re: The Murder of Jill Dando

Post by brigham »

So it was treated as 'entertainment' rather than 'inquiry'?
I've seen that before, although I can't think of an example at the moment.

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Re: The Murder of Jill Dando

Post by SgtPepper »

ITV are doing a similar looking programme next Thursday at 9pm. Still only an hour long and with adverts to boot. Hopefully they'll squeeze in a bit more than a sobbing cousin and a mumbling detective.

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Re: The Murder of Jill Dando

Post by fatcat »

SgtPepper wrote:ITV are doing a similar looking programme next Thursday at 9pm. Still only an hour long and with adverts to boot. Hopefully they'll squeeze in a bit more than a sobbing cousin and a mumbling detective.
Yes seen a trailer and this looks rather promising.

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Re: The Murder of Jill Dando

Post by SgtPepper »

The ITV version was not quite as bad. I get the impression that having got access to Barry George they didn't quite know what to do with him.

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Re: The Murder of Jill Dando

Post by jeffcv »

agreed about Barry George, and the Serbia connection was properly explored, which made it considerably better than the BBC programme.

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Re: The Murder of Jill Dando

Post by fatcat »

jeffcv wrote:agreed about Barry George, and the Serbia connection was properly explored, which made it considerably better than the BBC programme.
Yes much better a programme I thought with some good analysis of things that had been forgotten about or not even raised at the time.They bothered to track down Barry George and let him have his say rather than just joining together stock footage like the BBC effort. Many of us had been left with the impression from the time that George had some sort of shrine to Dando, the ITV prog knocked that one on the head and built a perhaps more accurate picture of George as an unfortunate character where life had not dealt him with very good cards and his previous minor sexual offenses were perhaps just down to a clumsy outcast of a man just trying to make a connection with someone?

Whoever pulled the trigger,had obviously dealt with guns and death before (knowing how much noise the gun would make etc) and you really couldn't image George walking calmly away from a scene like that.

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Re: The Murder of Jill Dando

Post by Nick Cooper 625 »

I finally got round to watching both programme over the past week, and agree that the BBC one was pretty shoddy. Having the two senior police officers implying they still thought that George was guilty, and not offering a shred of remorse or apology was utterly shameful. In contrast, the ITV programme amply demonstrated just how unlikely George was as a suspect - beyond shallow prejudices of the investigating officers - let alone someone who was taken to court on circumstantial and misrepresented evidence.

The ITV programme also blew a massive hole in the police line - as pushed in the BBC programme - that the Serbian connection was simply too outlandish to merit proper investigation. On the balance of probabilities, it's likely to be the true reason Dando was killed, whether on the direct order of Belgrade, Arkan, or simply by ex-pats in the UK. Even in that context, the evidence against Kenneth Noye - an utterly ruthless and demonstrably vindictive killer - should also have prompted closer investigation at the time.
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