The Pembrokeshire Murders: How was John Cooper caught?

The Pembrokeshire Murders: How was John Cooper caught?
The Pembrokeshire Murders: How was John Cooper caught?

An emotional watch, The Pembrokeshire Murders focuses on serial killer, John Cooper’s, son Andrew (Oliver Ryan) for many scenes of the ITV drama.

John Cooper committed two double murders – killing four people in total.

He murdered brother and sister Richard and Helen Thomas then burned down their three-story farmhouse on December 22, 1985.

Then, three weeks after appearing on Bullseye, he robbed Peter Dixon of £300 and shot him and his wife Gwenda in the face at point blank range.

But Cooper’s crimes don’t stop there. He had a long history of crimes which include 30 robberies and violent assault.

How was John Cooper caught?

In a cold-case review that began in 2005 the murders were finally cracked, thanks to advances in forensic science — and a vital clue in murderer John Cooper’s appearance on TV game show Bullseye near the time of the second murders.

On the show Cooper told host Jim Bowen how he loved living in the area, and even mentioned the spot where the Dixons would later die.

The footage from his stint on the TV game show was used to clinch the murderer, as it was compared with a suspect sketch in his 1989 double murder.

This is the reason why he was nicknamed The Bullseye Killer.


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