A man who was wrongly jailed over the killing of Jill Dando has re-enacted the news presenter’s death in a bizarre interview.
A new Netflix documentary has reignited interest in the murder of the popular BBC TV personality.
Despite being the Metropolitan Police’s largest-ever murder inquiry, with more than 2,500 people interviewed, her death remains a mystery.
And while Netflix’s three-part series Who Killed Jill Dando? attempts to unravel the various conspiracy theories around her killing, it fails to uncover the true motive behind the shooting, which took place on the doorstep of her Fulham home.
However, the documentary does feature an interview with Barry George, who was jailed for her murder in 2001. His conviction was quashed by the Court of Appeal in 2007 and he was tried once again. In 2008 he was found not guilty.
In one of the most unsettling and bizarre moments, he requests the help of a crew member to help him reenact the murder. Speaking to the female producer, he asks: “Do you mind being the guinea pig?”
As she approaches him and comes within shot of the camera, he says: “If I’d have pushed you down – you’re facing your door, putting the keys in your door.
“If I’d have pushed you down and it was alleged I pushed you down with the left hand, there’d be masses of blood or gunshot residue over the perpetrator. They found one particle. I rest my case.”
Mr George was well known in the Fulham area, and was variously described as a “local weirdo” and an “unemployed loner”. He had previous convictions for sexual offences. He was not identified as the key suspect in the case until 10 months after Ms Dando’s murder, which took place on 26 April 1999.
After police nabbed him and searched his flat, they found a number of undeveloped camera films with shots of random women, as well as a number of magazines featuring Ms Dando.
However, officers became conviced they’d caught their man after discovering a tiny particle of firearms residue in the pocket of his coat. This turned out to be the only evidence that linked him to the murder, and was later found to be unreliable and led to his acquittal in 2008.
“It makes me angry that they have taken eight years of my life,” he said.
Ms Dando was found by neighbours slumped on the ground outside her home in Fulham after suffering a single gunshot wound to the head.
At the time, she was best known for presenting BBC One programme Crimewatch with Nick Ross and had won BBC Personality of the Year in 1997.
A number of conspiracies have emerged since her death, including the possibility that she was killed by a professional assassin or by a Serbian warlord for her work in raising funds for Kosovo.
None have been proven, with top lawyer Michael Mansfield KC, who defended George, saying: “The file should still be open. They should be looking.”
‘Who Killed Jill Dando?’ is now available to watch on Netflix