Newshub launches crime podcast

Press Release – Mediaworks



Newshub launches its very first podcast series today, Grove Road, which investigates the controversial conviction of Alan Hall. Hall was convicted of the 1985 murder of Arthur Easton but has always maintained his innocence.

Hosted by Newshub journalist Mike Wesley-Smith, Grove Road is a live case with recent developments and consists of eight episodes. For Newshub, this is a fresh move into the world of investigative podcasts broadening its multi-platform reach, promising to immerse listeners in a case that is both tragic and hauntingly questionable.
The podcast investigates the murder of South Auckland resident Arthur Easton in 1985 and the arrest of Alan Hall, a man who did not match original witness descriptions of the killer. It’s also a story about our system of justice – the power and trust we give to police and prosecutors, and their ability to find the truth.

Grove Road will look at many aspects of the case, both old and recent, and ask questions about Hall’s conviction. What was there to connect him to the crime? Did he receive a fair trial? And how can the police be sure they got the right man?

Mike Wesley-Smith has been working on the case for two years and says, “Ultimately our criminal justice system is about trust. The trust the accused places in the courts to ensure their jury hears all relevant evidence. The trust victims of crime place in police and prosecutors to ensure the right individual is held responsible. Finally, it is about the trust all New Zealanders place in the legal process to guarantee that citizens get a fair trial. The focus of this podcast is to see whether that trust was honoured in the conviction of Alan Hall for murder.”
At 8pm on Sunday, 13th October, 1985, Arthur Easton and his sons Kim and Brendan were spending a quiet night in their Papakura home on Grove Road, when they were disturbed by an intruder.

During a fight involving all four men in the hallway, Arthur Easton was fatally stabbed by the intruder who escaped down an alleyway next to the house. Kim and Brendan were taken to hospital with multiple stab wounds.

The boys initially described their attacker as a strong six-foot Maori man, and other motorists said they saw a ‘dark-skinned’ man running suspiciously from the area. Police searched for this suspect for months, but in the end the man arrested, charged and incarcerated for Arthur’s murder was Alan Hall – a slim five-foot-seven Pakeha with learning difficulties, but no alibi. As of 2018, Hall is still behind bars, and maintains he was wrongfully convicted.

The first episode of Grove Road is available now, with the remaining seven episodes being released daily from Sunday, 30th September – Saturday, 6th October.

You can subscribe to Grove Road on iTunes, SoundCloud, Spotify, Stitcher, Spreaker, and all other major podcast apps. It is also available on Newshub.

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