Man jailed after dismembering wife following ‘row over frozen chips’

‘Cruel’ Thomas McCann, 49, sentenced to life in prison for strangling wife of 24 years

Joe Sommerlad@JoeSommerlad
Tuesday 30 March 2021 22:33
<p>Thomas McCann will serve a minimum of 13 years, four months in prison</p>

Thomas McCann will serve a minimum of 13 years, four months in prison

A man has been sentenced to life in prison after strangling his wife and dumping her dismembered body in a country park near Stockport following an argument triggered by a £3 bag of oven chips left out of the freezer.

Thomas McCann, 49, suffocated his wife of 24 years Yvonne, 46, in the bathroom of their home in the aftermath of a row that erupted on 23 May 2020, the Saturday morning of the May Bank Holiday weekend, Manchester Crown Court heard.

Prosecutor Andrew Smith said the couple had met as teenagers and been together for 32 years but that Ms McCann had commenced an affair with another man around 2013, which inspired her husband’s jealousy, the breakdown of their marriage and, ultimately, her murder.

“Seemingly the trigger was some used frozen chips,” Mr Smith said.

“During that argument it is now clear that the defendant attacked Yvonne, strangled her to death in the bathroom and thereafter he dismembered her body in the bath.”

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After the killing, McCann responded to text messages from the couple’s four children using both Ms McCann’s phone and his own to pretend she was still alive and had merely stormed out.

Parts of Ms McCann’s body were subsequently discovered by dog walkers at Reddish Vale Country Park, Stockport, on the Bank Holiday Monday.

Police were alerted and found two bags containing human remains, then four more half a mile away in another area of the park.

McCann was later spotted in security camera footage loading bin bags into his car and carrying them towards the park. He was also seen throwing eight plastic bags into a skip at nearby Bredbury Recycling Centre.

McCann ultimately confessed his crime to police, admitting he “lost control and could not stop”.

Yvonne McCann ‘had a great deal to live for’, says judge

McCann was jailed for life on Tuesday with a minimum term of 13 years and four months.

“Your actions after the killing amount to serious aggravating factors,” Judge Alan Conrad QC told him while passing sentence.

“The defence suggest a combination of self-interest and panic, but what you did makes a terrible case even more horrific and even more upsetting to those concerned.

“Yvonne McCann was a woman with a great deal to live for and a great deal to look forward to when her life was so cruelly cut short by you.”

In a victim impact statement issued by the couple’s children, daughter Rachel Lawson said: “We are all really struggling with this. We love our mum very much, we also love our dad.”

Additional reporting by agencies