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Murder Detective with Graham Hill: Episode Guide

Graham Hill and Nick Scola in a park at nighttime
Image: Murder Detective

Former senior Surrey detective and criminologist Graham Hill – best known for his work on the Madeleine McCann investigation - fronts the brand-new true crime series Murder Detective, which takes viewers inside some of the most complex and shocking cases of recent years.

He brings his 30-year experience to provide a full 360-degree perspective on the inner workings, twists and turns of the police work in these fascinating cases. He uncovers the challenges and hardships faced by police and loved ones of the victims and the perseverance involved in bringing the perpetrators to justice.

Each episode sheds light on painstaking investigations through interviews with the investigation officers, as well as those most affected by the horrific murders: the family and friends of the victims.

Murder Detective premieres on Crime + Investigation Play on Sunday, 16th October with all episodes available on the streaming service. The series will air weekly on Crime + Investigation, Sundays at 9pm.

Episode 1: Sharon Birchwood - Sunday, 16th October 9pm

52-year-old Sharon Birchwood was killed at her home in the sleepy village of Ashtead, Surrey. In December 2007, Sharon was found by her ex-husband, strangled to death and trussed up in parcel tape.

Despite divorcing in 1989, Sharon remained devoted to her ex-husband George Birchwood, with him being the sole beneficiary of her will. Suspicions, therefore, initially fell on Birchwood, who had debts of more than £150,000. However, he seemed to have an alibi and was pictured on CCTV during the time of Sharon’s murder.

After months of painstaking detective work and a crucial DNA breakthrough, Paul Cryne became their prime suspect. Cryne was a former business associate of Birchwoods and had flown from Thailand shortly before her death, staying with Sharon's mother in Banstead.

Further into the investigation, it was discovered that Birchwood paid Cryne £30,000 to kill Sharon so he could inherit his ex-wife’s £575,000 assets.

Through interviews with the senior investigating officer and those who worked on the case, we learn how a case spanning two continents was solved and the killers brought to justice.

Episode 2: Jody Dobrowski - Sunday, 23rd October 9pm

Jody Dobrowski was just 24 when he was brutally murdered in an attack so cruel, he could only be identified through fingerprints. He was walking across Clapham Common when he was beaten to death on 14th October 2005.

His attackers, Scott Walker and Thomas Pickford, were motivated by homophobic thuggery and planned an attack based solely on sexuality.

The investigation saw SIO Nick Scola and his investigating team never giving up and carrying out painstaking police work. Their hard work paid off when they linked a crucial DNA match to the killers.

It was a landmark case as it was the first time that a judge had been able to use an anti-gay motive as an aggravating feature to decide the sentence. Hill investigates the heart-breaking circumstances with SIO Nick Scola and takes us inside the incredible police work.

Episode 3: Adrian Murphy - Sunday, 30th October 9pm

Alongside those working closest to the case, Hill examines how Irish dance champion Adrian Murphy fell victim to the fatal intentions of Diana Cristea and her boyfriend Joel Osei.

Cristea and Osei targeted victims on the gay dating site Grindr, plotting to drug them with scopolamine and strip their homes of valuables. Adrian Murphy died from a lethal dose of the drug at a Battersea flat on 4th June 2019, while two days later a second man was also drugged and robbed by the couple but survived.

The discovery of Adrian’s body sparked an investigation that revealed the couple’s deadly use of scopolamine, which earned its sinister ‘Devil’s Breath’ nickname. Hill sheds light on the investigation’s inner workings, which saw both Cristea and Murphy found guilty of Adrian Murphy’s murder.

Episode 4: Maheswaran Kaneshan - Sunday, 6th November

Former fisherman Maheswaran Kaneshan sought asylum in the UK but became caught up in a gang feud that turned deadly. His life was controlled by the gang that had brought him to London. He lived in cramped accommodations, worked for little money, and was therefore struggling to repay them.

A seemingly innocent job opportunity at a petrol station was the spark that lit a deadly fuse that led to Maheswaran’s murder. Gang bosses Sivajodi Anantharaja and Sivapragasam Rajeskanna brutally beat Maheswaran, causing him to die in hospital 10 days later.

They remained at large for two years until Rajeskanna was found and arrested on international warrants. Hill speaks with dedicated investigators to examine how Sri Lankan authorities worked alongside UK officers to bring justice for Maheswaran and his loved ones.

Episode 5: Dean Mayley - Sunday 13th November 9pm

Dean Mayley was an innocent man with learning difficulties doing his best to become an independent adult. His newly found independence saw him become the victim of a horrific attack by four teenage boys aged 17-19 in broad daylight.

In February 2014, whilst walking home alone, Dean encountered the group, who taunted, mugged, and stabbed him with such force that the knife passed through his body and came out the other side.

Hill discusses the case with SIO Matt Bonner, who was motivated by a desire to bring justice to those involved in this extreme and cruel-natured crime. He waded through CCTV footage, undertook interviews, pressured prime suspects, and uncovered phone records until he found his culprits.