Sharon Birchwood’s brutal murder shocked her neighbours in the quiet Surrey suburb of Ashtead.
The disabled 52-year-old, who suffered from myalgic encephalomyelitis (ME), was found murdered in her own home 11 years ago.
Sharon was bound, gagged with tape and strangled to death with an electric cord in her home in 2007.
She had been found by ex-husband Graham Birchwood, also known as George, who had dialled 999.
Birchwood had denied plotting the horrendous murder from the beginning and detectives remained puzzled after DNA and CCTV footage proved he was not at the scene of the crime.
However, as new information and evidence unfolded it became clear Birchwood was involved – but he did not act alone.
It was later revealed that he had paid a business associate from Thailand to kill his ex-wife.
Tonight on ITV, Susanna Reid will look into the twists and turns of the case as she talks to detectives who were on the case.
One particularly chilling scene shows Sharon predicting her own murder in notes she had written to her ex-husband.
When the investigation turned back to her Surrey home, the police searched through her life and uncovered letters she had written.
A detective reveals: "We found some of her jottings on pieces of paper about her feelings for George and what happened in those days prior to her murder. One of the jottings said, ‘Are you hoping I die so that you can use the insurance money to sort out your mess?’
"A voice from the grave, very chilling, very sad."
It was then that Birchwood had become a suspect and he was arrested.
When questioned by the police about the jottings, he dismissed them but admitted that he had "treated her appallingly".
Paul Cryne, also known as Paul Baker, was paid £30,000 to murder Sharon in her own home – at the request of Birchwood.
Birchwood’s motive became clear when it was revealed he was debt-ridden and was the sole beneficiary of his former wife’s will.
During the trial into her murder, it was revealed he had planned to sell his dead former wife’s £400,000 bungalow, claim her £75,000 life insurance and start a new life abroad.
*Who Killed Sharon Birchwood: Police Tapes airs tonight at 9pm on ITV
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