The series – which is being published across its 66 digital subscription sites – will look back at the most shocking cases across Britain using a variety of different types of content ranging from videos to podcasts and crime scene photos with interactive maps.
Presented by Newsquest journalist Jody Doherty-Cove, Charged – True Crime UK will feature insight from reporters and editors who were at the heart of the stories, from first breaking the news in their communities to sitting through extensive trials.
The video series will also appear on a new YouTube channel and Jody will travel the country to explore historical crimes in our communities with new episodes released each month.
The first video episode which has gone live this week tells the story of one of Britain’s most wanted killers. Presenter Jody, who also edits the episodes, explores how Christopher Guest More Jr fled the UK and led a luxurious lifestyle after torturing and murdering a man in front of his two children in Warrington. Adam Everett, reporter at the Warrington Guardian, shines a light on what happened during the trial and the jury’s decision.
Jody said: “This remarkable story is the perfect start to our exciting new project which aims to connect the knowledge and expertise of our newsrooms with a global audience.
“We know our local stories can excite audiences far beyond the patches of our titles, proven by the 1.4 million people who tuned in on Facebook to see a version of this documentary last year.”
With true crime videos stacking an estimated 2 billion views on YouTube each year, the platform was chosen to expand Newsquest’s digital output and enrich audiences with the knowledge and insight of the publisher’s reporters and editors, says Newsquest.
Viewers looking to delve deeper into the cases will be treated to a wide array of exclusive materials - including access to full interviews, interactive timelines, picture galleries and more, across Newsquest’s websites in the True Crime UK section.
Sofia Delgado, head of digital platforms and tools, said: “Diversifying how we reach audiences has always been a tricky task in local news, and one that would’ve been frowned upon not long ago. But it’s undeniable that building communities goes beyond geographical borders.
“With this project we hope to strike the balance that allows newsrooms to have boots on the ground and focus on strengthening the bond with their local communities, while we tap into new hyper- engaged audiences that seek quality journalism, no matter where they are based.”
The first episode of Charged – True Crime UK is out on YouTube now. People can also follow the team and their project on Twitter, Instagram and TikTok to keep up to date.