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The Long Shadow: Serial killer Peter Sutcliffe's sibling speaks out about ITV drama

David Morrissey, Katherine Kelly and more star in the series

Kris Hitchen, Lee Ingleby, Stephen Tompkinson, Toby Jones and Jack Deam in The Long Shadow
Francesca Shillcock
Francesca ShillcockSenior Features Writer
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The Long Shadow has been a tough but gripping watch over the past few weeks as the ITV drama depicts harrowing crimes undertaken by notorious serial killer, Peter Sutcliffe.

The series, which features David Morrissey, Toby Jones, Katherine Kelly and more among its cast, details the police's five-year hunt to catch Peter and bring him to justice. But the prolific murderer's family member has spoken out about the drama series, branding it unnecessary.

WATCH: The Long Shadow official trailer

Speaking with the MailOnline, Peter's brother Carl explained how he refused to watch the show as he's lived with the family's shame brought on by his brother's despicable crimes.

"What is to be gained from [the drama]? I feel so sorry for the victims' families that they have to endure the retelling of losing their loved one. It just drags up the most painful memories," he explained.

"My family don't need it either; it was bad enough to go through it at the time. It's like reopening a terrible old wound. Apart from Peter, the rest of us turned out fine and lead good lives — after sharing the same upbringing and parents.

"It has been a thorn in my side. Unless you have a notorious criminal in your family, you cannot understand what it is like. It is shameful, an unwelcome presence that never goes away, even after his death."

MORE: ITV's The Long Shadow: What happened to Yorkshire Ripper Peter Sutcliffe's wife? 

MORE: Shetland shares bittersweet first look for season 8 - and introduces new lead detective 

British serial killer Peter Sutcliffe, a.k.a. 'The Yorkshire Ripper,'© Getty Images
British serial killer Peter Sutcliffe, a.k.a. 'The Yorkshire Ripper,'

The Mail reports that Carl, who accused ITV of "cashing in" on other people's suffering, works as a successful antiques dealer and shares three children with partner, Steff, of 30 years.  

Did Peter Sutcliffe have children?

Peter Sutcliffe never had children but he was married to his wife, Sonia Szurma, from the 1970s until 1994 when they divorced. After meeting as teenagers, they dated for eight years before marrying in 1974. Two months after the pair tied the knot, Peter began his murder spree. Two years later, Sonia began treatment for schizophrenia. They lived together in Heaton, Bradford. Sonia worked as a supply teacher at the time and also took a job as an auxiliary nurse one night a week.

David Morrissey as DCS George Oldfield in The Long Shadow© ITV
Peter Sutcliffe's brother has condemned the ITV drama

The hunt for Peter Sutcliffe spanned almost six years, with 30,000 statements taken and 2.5 million hours spent on catching him. He was finally caught after being pulled over by an officer in Sheffield on January 2, 1981. Over the following day, the criminal described his attacks and even claimed to have heard voices telling him to commit the crimes.   

Toby Jones in The Long Shadow© Justin Slee
Toby Jones in The Long Shadow

He eventually pleaded not guilty to 13 charges of murder, but guilty to manslaughter on the grounds of diminished responsibility. After a two-week trial at London's Old Bailey, Peter Sutcliffe was found guilty of murder on all 13 counts and attempting to murder seven other women.