Jonathan Margolis writes in the Daily Mirror today about how 30 years ago as a trainee local newspaper reporter he uncovered a series of amazing world exclusives about the identity of serial murderer of 12 women Peter Sutcliffe, the Yorkshire Ripper.
And he reveals that he turned down £1m from a French magazine to “defect” with the story.
After a tip-off from his paper’s crime reporter Roger Cross, Margolis writes that he was the first reporter anywhere in the world to track down the Ripper.
After some detective work, he knocked on the door of Sutcliffe neighbours and secured one of only two media interviews the Garsides would ever give.
He secured the amazing admission that they had warned police months earlier that they had seen Sutcliffe coming and going at odd hours and burning clothes in his back garden on the nights murders took place.
Margolis also revealed how he tracked down the parents of Sutcliffe’s wife Sonia and broke the news to them that their son-in-law was being questioned by police on suspicion of being the Yorkshire Ripper. He secured another exclusive interview and collected a family of album of the “most sought-after photos in the world”.
All without a penny changing hands. Inspiring stuff and a great example of how – by doing the basics well – Margolis landed one of the most amazing stories ever.
Nowadays Margolis is an accomplished freelance journalist, broadcaster, author and speaker.