To this day, the brutal murder of TV presenter Jill Dando has never been solved.
Barry George, an innocent man, spent 8 years in prison for a crime he didn’t commit and the real killer remains at large.
Over the years we’ve heard various theories about possible motives for the murder including the involvement of the Serbian mafia or a revenge attack for her work on Crimewatch.
Were these theories merely red herrings, planted to throw investigators off track?
If we go back to original news reports we find this very interesting piece in the Mirror:
” Hours after the shooting, The Mirror was told by a mystery caller that a blue Range Rover was involved in the murder. We passed the information to police.
A similar vehicle was seen near the home of the TV girl’s fiance, consultant Alan Farthing, in the days before the tragedy.
The E-fit suspect was spotted waiting at a bus stop for several minutes in West London’s Fulham Palace Road soon after Jill was shot outside her nearby home. When a bus arrived, he remained standing by the kerb.
A witness who spent three and a half hours at Scotland Yard compiling the image said the man was sweating so much his collar was soaked.
He also had marks on the bridge of his nose as if he had recently been wearing heavy glasses.
Another witness who saw a man waiting near Jill’s home said he was wearing dark-framed glasses that seemed too big for him.
Jill’s brother Nigel, 47, said last night: “I sincerely hope on behalf of myself, my family, colleagues and everyone touched by Jill, this E-fit will lead police to the killer.”
The metallic blue Range Rover was seen speeding down Doneraile Street, in Fulham, directly opposite Gowan Avenue where Jill was shot.
It swerved right into Fulham Palace Road, ignoring a red light at a pedestrian crossing.
The vehicle then cut in front of a white van that had stopped to let someone cross the road, and accelerated away at speed towards Putney Bridge.
An eye-witness said it was going so fast it heeled over as it turned on to the main road.
The car was captured on close-circuit TV. But the footage was not good enough to show the registration number.
Police think the Range Rover may have been a back-up vehicle and getaway for the gunman. It may have been racing to rendezvous with the assassin when it was spotted.
It may also have been driven by a man who ran across Fulham Palace Road away from the direction of Gowan Avenue just after the murder. A driver braked hard to avoid him.
Jill was killed by one shot from a silenced 9mm semi-automatic pistol pressed to the side of her head. Investigators now believe the killing was a contract job involving two men.
The attack was “military” in its precision. And the bullet used was a hollow-point type favoured by assassins because the damage it causes is almost always fatal.
A second man was also seen acting suspiciously near Jill’s house just before she was killed. He was wearing a grey suit and had light blond hair.
The suspected hitman was seen with a mobile phone before and after the attack.
Detectives think he may have been using it to receive information about Jill’s movements, and to organise a getaway. The presenter was no longer living at Gowan Avenue as she had moved in to her fiance’s Chiswick home. She occasionally returned to her house to collect mail.
A second person may have staked out the Chiswick address.
Jill’s movements may also have been phoned back when she went shopping on the day she died.
When she returned to her house she found a parking space outside her front door. Police think the space may have been occupied by another member of the hit team who left it as Jill approached.
Because the killing was carried out so efficiently, police no longer believe it was the work of an obsessed stalker.”
We then find the Met arresting and charging vulnerable loner Barry George and blackening his name in the press so he was eventually unlawfully imprisoned.
Why was the report of a well-dressed man in a Range Rover discounted by police at the time?
We have absolutely no idea.
Today, however, new theories are emerging about the murder of Jill Dando.
There are those who say she was looking into claims that a vile child abuse ring was operating at the highest levels of UK society and even had plans to write a book about her research.
Could it be that, as in the case of brave MP Geoffrey Dickens, she had unwittingly stumbled across explosive evidence of who was really involved in the scandal.
Was it this knowledge that lead to Jill Dando’s tragic death?
We may well be about to find out.