Would he go to jail or wouldn’t he? That was the question on everyone’s lips as The Trial: A Murder In The Family reached its dramatic climax last night.
Channel 4’s pioneering courtroom drama – in which a real judge and jury presided over a fictional murder trial – had kept viewers on the edge of their seats over five scintillating parts.
And last night, it was time to find out if Simon Davis (played by Michael Gould) would face justice for strangling his estranged wife Carla (Downton Abbey’s Emma Lowndes) to death in September 2015.
You could’ve heard a pin drop as the judge raised his hammer to deliver the verdict. So was it guilty or not guilty?
In fact, it was neither.
After deliberating over the evidence, the jury were unable to reach a majority verdict – four thought the accused was guilty, the other eight disagreed – and so Davis was discharged.
The result of the trial left many viewers in shock, as the programme then went on to reveal that Davis DID murder his wife.
He’d killed her in cold blood after she told him she was leaving for Scotland with her new lover Lewis Skinner – another suspect in her murder – and taking their kids with her.
One fan on Twitter said: “I didnt [sic] expect that! He killed her… Oh dear. The defence QC barrister was really good I guess… He planted that doubt.”
“I am in so much shock right now, what the…!” exclaimed another.
Some viewers had initially complained that The Trial’s groundbreaking blend of fact and fiction was confusing.
But that didn’t stop the ratings soaring as millions tuned in for a fascinating insight into how a murder trial unfolds.
While the murder itself was made up, there was a sobering revelation as the final credits rolled – two women are killed by their partners every week in the UK.