Former BBC Commissioning Editor, Elliot Reed’s production company, Zeppelin Films is to make The Murder of lee Irving: Disability Mate Crime for SKY Crime.

The new documentary explores the brutal murder of a young man with learning difficulties, lured to his death by four people he thought were his friends. The documentary special has been commissioned for SKY Crime by Emily-Jayne Wilde, Programming Lead, Sky Crime and Sky Witness and Jack Oliver, Head of Co-Productions as part of the British Crime Season.

The film tells the story of a dead body discovered on a patch of grass in Newcastle, with catastrophic injuries. 24-year old Lee Irving had been punched, kicked and stamped to death. The new documentary will unravel a murder investigation, leading to a house of horror and a local family as suspects, a mum who tried to warn the authorities, and a local MP campaigning for legislation to protect victims of disability ‘mate’ crime.

Directed by David McConnell, the film chronicles Lee’s short life, from growing up with a learning disability, his struggles with school and as a teenager, to his attempts to live independently as a young adult. Harrowing testimony from family and friends, the investigating murder detective and Lee’s psychologist reveal a despicable crime.

Elliot Reed, executive producer, said ‘Fourteen agencies, including social services, were involved with Lee since he was four years old. A review concluded there were multiple failings to safeguard Lee, who was in and out of prison. Six years on, those closest to Lee are still struggling to come to terms with his death. This is his story.”

“The Murder of Lee Irving: Disability Mate Crime” is distributed by Espresso Media International. 

Jon Creamer

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