BBC defends Crimewatch over murder 'cliffhanger'
The BBC has called Crimewatch's new format "necessary" after viewers slammed the programme for using a real-life murder case as a "cliffhanger".
Fans of the show expressed their disappointment as Monday night's episode ended on the retelling of the case of Melanie Road, who was raped and killed in 1984 at the age of 17.
Thanks to advances in DNA-testing, the murderer was finally caught in 2015 and given a life sentence earlier this year.
But the episode finished with viewers being prompted to tune in next week to find out how the case was solved, prompting some to take to Twitter to compare the series to a "soap opera".
A BBC spokesman said: "Crimewatch worked closely with the police on this item, which was made with the co-operation of Melanie Road's family.
"The story of Melanie's murder and how detectives eventually caught her killer spanned decades, involving hundreds of police officers and multiple investigation teams. To do full justice to Melanie's story it was necessary to tell it across two programmes."