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Friday, May 14, 1999 Published at 10:28 GMT 11:28 UK


Dando reward rises to £150,000

The reward is front page news

The man heading the Jill Dando murder inquiry has welcomed a UK newspaper's offer of a £100,000 reward for information leading to the capture of the TV presenter's killer.

Jill Dando 1961 - 1999
The Daily Mail says it is putting up the reward in the hope someone will come forward with a vital clue in the hunt for the man who murdered Ms Dando.

The Crimestoppers Trust announced on Thursday it was also offering a £50,000 reward. The money is believed to have been donated by an anonymous businessman.

The 37-year-old presenter of Crimewatch UK was shot in the head on the doorstep of her home in Fulham, west London, on 26 April.

The BBC's Stephen Cape: "An unknown business man has added another £50,000 to the reward"
The man in charge of the inquiry, Detective Chief Inspector Hamish Campbell, said of the Mail's offer: "This is an extremely large reward and shows the determination of the Daily Mail to assist the police and the public to identify whoever killed Jill Dando.

'This could be the trigger'

"I believe this sum of money might just trigger someone who knows the true story of what happened on that day to get in touch and tell us."

Later he held a news conference to dispel some of the "speculation" which had appeared in the media about Ms Dando's death.

The Daily Mail announced the reward on its front page on Thursday, and said it had taken the "unusual decision" after "lengthy consultation" with the family and senior Metropolitan Police officers involved in the case.

It said it had the full backing of the Dando family, and quoted Ms Dando's brother Nigel as saying: "I am very pleased about the Daily Mail's positive action and hope it will lead to the arrest and conviction of whoever is responsible for my sister's murder."

'No silencer used'

[ image: An E-fit of the suspect]
An E-fit of the suspect
Mr Campbell said he wanted to dispel several inaccuracies which had appeared in newspaper reports since the murder.

He said:

  • Ms Dando was not killed with "dum-dum" bullets.

  • Her assailant did not use a silencer.

  • The murder weapon was not a Browning semi-automatic, a gun often used by the armed forces.

    Detective Chief Inspector Campbell: "We need to dispel some of the speculation"
    Mr Campbell said there was a need to "get back to facts".

    He said they had a new witness who saw a man outside Ms Dando's house around 1115 BST on the morning of the shooting.

    He was white, clean shaven and was wearing a blue suit.

    'Were you in Fulham?'

    Mr Campbell made another appeal for anyone who was in the Gowan Avenue area on 26 April, and said wanted to speak to anyone who was driving a Range Rover in the area on that day.

    He said there was no suggestion Ms Dando was being followed before her death.

    Mr Campbell said they still had no sightings of the prime suspect after he was dropped off at Putney Bridge underground station.

    Police are confident that the killer did not wear a mask or gloves during the shooting.

    He said they had taken away the door of Ms Dando's house for fingerprint analysis, but he said it would not be clear whether they had the killer's fingerprints until he was apprehended.

    Search for the motive

    Mr Campbell said they were still talking to Ms Dando's friends, relatives and former boyfriends in a bid to ascertain a motive for the killing.

    Detective Chief Superintendent Brian Edwards explains his appointment as senior investigating officer
    Scotland Yard has appointed Detective Chief Superintendent Brian Edwards to oversee the inquiry. But Mr Edwards, who heads CID operations in central London, said Mr Campbell would remain in "day-to-day" charge of the inquiry.

    Mr Edwards said the move in no way implied criticism of Mr Campbell.

    Anyone with information should phone the incident room on 0181 246 0732 or Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

    The Daily Mail says people can also contact its crime desk on 0171 938 6094.

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