Pembrokeshire Murders serial killer targeted victims after ‘losing on Bullseye’

Serial killer John Cooper despised women so much that losing to one on the game show Bullseye could have sent him over the edge, according to detectives.

He appeared on the show in 1989 and it was him going on the programme which led officers to track him down 21 years later after he murdered Peter and Gwenda Dixon on the Pembrokeshire coast path in the 1980s.

Police tracked him down following a five year probe in 2011 after they compared police sketches to him when he was on the show.

The investigation, led by Det Supt Steve Wilkins, meant Cooper was finally put behind bars in 2011.

The story of the harrowing murders was just broadcast as a three-part series on ITV and bought in millions of viewers.

In the footage found by reporter Jonathan Hill, Cooper can be seen on the show losing to a woman just weeks before he killed the Dixon's.

He killed the couple four years after he murdered Richard and Helen Thomas at their nearby home outside of Milford Haven.

The 50-year-old journalist has now spoken to The Mirror on how tracking down the footage of Cooper on Bullseye helped police officers.

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Hill told the publication: "A psychologist in the case pondered that Cooper losing to a woman on that show could have been a contributing factor on the murder of the Dixons.

"It would have been very difficult for him to deal with."

Cooper is now 76-years-old and serving life in prison. He also terrorised his wife, kids and animals.

Retired detective Mr Wilkins, 61, also weighed in.

He told the publication how the killer had a "over-inflated view of his abilities".

Wilkins said: "Cooper had an over-inflated view of his abilities, and when his plans failed it was never his fault and if he failed he would lash out.

"He is also a control freak. Nobody would cross him.

"I think he enjoyed the violence and the control."

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