'Murder on Middle Beach' Finale: Will there be Season 2? Madison accesses police probe on Barbara's murder
By combining his own team's research, as well as the police's investigation documents, Madison may finally be able to crack the case
HBO's latest four-part docuseries, 'Murder on Middle Beach' delves into the gruesome murder of Barbara Hamburg, a 48-year-old woman, who was found bludgeoned to death outside her home on Middle Beach Road. Directed by Barbara's son, Madison Hamburg, the docuseries is a chronicle of Madison's return to his home as he is determined to understand the life of the mother he had lost and to uncover the truth about her death. The family's troubled history is explored and Madison questions whether learning the truth will provide closure or just more grief.
Over the course of the four episodes, Madison learns things about his mother that he never knew -- that she was an alcoholic and was part of a pyramid scheme known as Gifting Tables. He also investigates a handful of suspects. The first -- and seemingly most likely -- is his father, and Barbara's ex-husband, Jeffrey Hamburg. On the day that Barbara was found dead, she was scheduled to appear in court to discuss ex-husband Jeffrey's claim that he could not afford to pay child support and alimony. The pair had divorced in 2002. When Barbara failed to show up in court, her lawyer called the Madison police to check her address when they found her body in the yard. The episode that investigated Barbara's participation in Gifting Tables also considered whether an angry victim of the pyramid scheme may have gotten to Barbara.
The third episode featured two potential suspects -- Barbara's sister, Conway Beach, and Madison's sister, Ali Hamburg. It was Conway who found Barbara's body after bringing Ali home from school when the latter said her mother was not responding to her texts. Conway recreates the scene as she explains to the camera what they first saw and how Conway came across her body. As they walked to the front door, they noticed that the dog statue placed in front of it was knocked over and broken. Ali notices her mother's purse and keys and when Conway reaches out to take them, Ali tries to stop her, saying it is a crime scene.
And while Conway strongly suspected that Ali killed her mother before going to school -- disproved by Madison who confirmed Ali's alibi and informed Conway -- Barbara revealed that she once hired a hitman to kill Barbara and the latter's family over anger that Barbara had taken her son away. This had happened when Conway was not sober and had been an alcoholic. However, while Conway has an alibi, it is not as concrete.
Madison learns in the final episode that the police first decided on their main suspect just a few days after the murder. Over his many meetings with them, he understands that his mother's murder is being treated as a cold case. When he tries to access the police files on the homicide investigation, the police refuse and so, Madison files a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request. We see the hearing take place, but it is not until the end of the documentary that we learn that the Connecticut FOIA Commission ruled in his favor. In October 2020, Madison was handed the files from the police department and we are told that Madison and his team are currently going through those documents.
As such, Madison has yet to discover who really killed his mother. But, as one of the producers say, by combining his own team's research, as well as the police's investigation documents, Madison may finally be able to crack the case. If that were so, and if Madison chooses to continue with filming the process, we could potentially expect more episodes in the future.
'Murder on Middle Beach' airs on HBO on Sunday nights at 10/9c. The series finale airs on Sunday, December 6.