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Is BBC’s Steeltown Murders Inspired by a True Story? Know The Truth Behind The Murders Committed By Joseph Kappen!

Steeltown Murders is an American television show. It focuses on the genre of factual drama. Naturally, the audience has a few questions for the creators, mainly: Is BBC’s Steeltown Murders inspired by a true story? The director is Marc Evans, the writer is Ed Whitmore, and the producer is Hannah Thomas. 

The production companies are Severn Screen and All3Media International, and the executive producers are Ed Taflan, Jon Hill, Helen Perry, and Rebecca Ferguson. They released all four episodes of Steeltown Murders on Monday, 15 May 2023, on the streaming platform BBC One. Fans rated it 7.1/10 on IMDb, 78% on Rotten Tomatoes, and 83% on Google. Today, we shall discuss whether Steeltown Murders is inspired by a true story.

Is BBC’s Steeltown Murders Inspired by a True Story?

Yes, BBC’s Steeltown Murders is inspired by a true story. It follows the real-life murders of Sandra Newton, Geraldine Hughes, and Pauline Floyd by Joseph Kappen in 1973. Newton was the first one to disappear, but the police did not connect her murder to Hughes and Floyd’s. It was only during the 2000s after they found DNA evidence, that the police connected the three crimes. 

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On 14 July 1993, Sandra was in Briton Ferry when she went missing. Locals discovered her dead body three days later. Police investigation revealed someone picked her up as she was returning home. The perpetrator raped her and strangled her with her skirt. Two months later, on 16 September 1973, Pauline and Geraldine also went missing. 

They took a ride from someone while returning from a pub in Swansea. Locals in Llandarcy found their raped and dead bodies in a woodland. Sadly, one girl had almost escaped before the killer struck her down. Initial police investigations could not reveal anything. 

Even though Joseph Kappen was one of their suspects, they did not convict him due to a lack of evidence. But in the 21st century, forensic science made a breakthrough with DNA testing. They tested the DNA on Pauline and Geraldine’s clothes with Joseph Kappen’s son Paul. Paul was seven years old at the time of the murders. 

There was enough similarity and evidence for the Wales police to suspect Joseph Kappen. Unfortunately for them, Kappen had passed away in 1980. They exhumed his body in 2002 and found the perfect match with all three murders. Kappen’s family denied these accusations till the end. 

BBC’s Steeltown Murders Plot

BBC’s Steeltown Murders is about the brutal killings of three girls: Sandra Newton, Geraldine Hughes, and Pauline Floyd. In 1973, Hughes and Floyd left the Top Rank nightclub in Swansea. They were seen there for the last time. 

People discovered their dead bodies in Llandarcy later on. However, at the time, the police could not catch the culprit. They also did not know it linked these two murders to a third one: Sandra Newton’s. The 21st century saw a breakthrough in DNA technology. 

It helped the Wales Police Department to solve the cold case from 1973. They discovered the killer was a dead man named Joseph Kappen, who lived a criminal life. The world knows Kappen as the first documented serial killer in Wales. 

BBC’s Steeltown Murders Cast

In BBC’s Steeltown Murders, we see Philip Glenister playing the role of DCI Paul Bethell, Scott Arthur playing the role of young Paul, Steffan Rhodri playing the role of DC Phil Rees, Siôn Alun Davies playing the role of young Phil, Keith Allen playing the role of Dai Williams, Rhys Rusbatch playing the role of young Dai, Sharon Morgan playing the role of Pat Williams, Aneurin Barnard playing the role of Joseph Kappen, Maria Pride playing the role of Christine Kappen, and Remy Beasley playing the role of young Christine. 

We also see Calista Davies playing the role of Geraldine Hughes; Jade Croot playing the role of Pauline Floyd; Karen Paullada playing the role of DSI Jackie Roberts; Richard Harrington playing the role of Dr Colin Dark; Nia Roberts playing the role of Karina Bethell; Elinor Crawley playing the role of young Karina; Priyanga Burford playing the role of Sita Anwar; Natasha Vasandani playing the role of young Sita; and Kriss Dosanjh playing the role of Rohan Anwar. 

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Is BBC’s Steeltown Murders inspired by a true story?

Yes, BBC’s Steeltown Murders is inspired by a true story. It follows the real-life murders of Sandra Newton, Geraldine Hughes, and Pauline Floyd by Joseph Kappen in 1973.

2. Will there be a second season of BBC’s Steeltown Murders?

Unfortunately, according to sources, BBC will not renew Steeltown Murders for its second season.

3. Where can I watch BBC’s Steeltown Murders?

You can watch BBC’s Steeltown Murders on BBC, Sky, Amazon Prime Video, and Apple TV Plus

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