Husband, 49, murdered wife and dumped her body after she accidentally defrosted bag of frozen chips

A jealous husband strangled his wife and dumped her dismembered body in a country park and council tip ‘like garbage’, a court has heard.

Thomas McCann, 49, strangled ‘childhood sweetheart’ Yvonne, 46, his wife of 24 years, in the bathroom of their home in Stockport after a row about a £3 bag of frozen chips, Manchester Crown Court heard.

McCann then used a Stanley knife and tree lopper to cut up her body, stopping to send and reply to text messages to their children, pretending their mother was still alive.

Thomas McCann, 49, (pictured) strangled his wife Yvonne, 46, in their bathroom at their home in Stockport last year

Thomas McCann, 49, (pictured) strangled his wife Yvonne, 46, in their bathroom at their home in Stockport last year

Yvonne (pictured) was killed after the couple had a row over a £3 bag of frozen chips

Yvonne (pictured) was killed after the couple had a row over a £3 bag of frozen chips

Thomas McCann, 49, (left) strangled his wife Yvonne, 46, (right) in their bathroom at their home in Stockport last year after a row over a £3 bag of frozen chips 

The truck driver later told police he was ‘Hannibal Lecter’, and said: ‘I killed my wife and disposed of her like garbage’ after he ‘lost control and could not stop’.

McCann will be sentenced on Tuesday after admitting at an earlier hearing to the murder on May 23, 2020.

Andrew Smith, prosecuting, told the court the couple had four children, met as teenagers and had been together for 32 years until McCann attacked his wife on the Saturday morning of the May Bank Holiday weekend last year.

Mrs McCann began to see another man around 2013, leading to her husband’s jealousy and relationship breakdown and ultimately to her murder.

Mr Smith said: ‘Seemingly the trigger was some used frozen chips.

‘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.’

Parts of her body were discovered by dog walkers in Reddish Vale Country Park, Stockport, on the Bank Holiday Monday and police were alerted.

They found two bags, then four more half a mile away in another part of the park.

After strangling Yvonne (right), Thomas then used a Stanley knife and a tree lopper to chop up her body

After strangling Yvonne (right), Thomas then used a Stanley knife and a tree lopper to chop up her body

After strangling Yvonne (right), Thomas then used a Stanley knife and a tree lopper to chop up her body

The last proof of life was a text message from Mrs McCann replying to a neighbour inquiring if she was OK after hearing rowing come from the property on the Saturday morning of May 23.

Mrs McCann’s text said they had been rowing over a bag of frozen chips.

McCann was then captured on CCTV leaving the house on Rosslave Walk, Brinnington, Stockport, to collect items from his work’s tipper truck.

Between 10.40am and 3.42pm there was no sighting of him, the prosecution suggesting that during that time he was dismembering his wife’s body.

At the same time he used his wife’s mobile phone and his own to send and reply to text messages from their children, saying they had had a row and his wife had walked out.

McCann was later captured on footage carrying bin bags to his car and carrying bags while walking towards the country park.

Later he was seen throwing eight plastic bags into a skip at Bredbury Recycling Centre.

Only 50 per cent of Mrs McCann’s body has been recovered.

McCann claimed to have last seen his wife after dropping her off near the home of her new partner.

The court heard the couple had four children, met as teenagers and had been together for 32 years until McCann attacked Yvonne (pictured)

The court heard the couple had four children, met as teenagers and had been together for 32 years until McCann attacked Yvonne (pictured)

The court heard the couple had four children, met as teenagers and had been together for 32 years until McCann attacked Yvonne (pictured)

McCann (pictured) cut up his wife's body and placed it in several plastic bags

McCann (pictured) cut up his wife's body and placed it in several plastic bags

McCann (pictured) disposed of the bags in a country park and council tip

McCann (pictured) disposed of the bags in a country park and council tip

McCann (pictured) cut up his wife’s body and placed it in several plastic bags before disposing of them in a country park and council tip 

Shortly after, he was found to have scratches to his cheek, arms and hands and was arrested.

In a victim impact statement from Mrs McCann’s children, Rachel Lawson, her daughter, said: ‘We are all really struggling with this. We love our mum very much, we also love our dad.’

Louise Blackwell QC, mitigating, said McCann had not planned the killing and there was no history of violence, but the row ‘blew up’ over something that was a ‘small domestic detail’.

She said: ‘There was a lack of premeditation on this case and all this blew up for a totally unnecessary reason. 

‘Although there was unfaithfulness there is no suggestion he was anything but utterly committed to the deceased and there is nothing to suggest he did anything other than his best for his family until that day.

In a letter McCann said: ‘I would like to stress how truly, truly sorry I am to my wife’s family and my three children for the pain and suffering I have put them through.

Mrs McCann (pictured) began to see another man around 2013, leading to her husband's jealousy and relationship breakdown

Mrs McCann (pictured) began to see another man around 2013, leading to her husband's jealousy and relationship breakdown

Mrs McCann (pictured) began to see another man around 2013, leading to her husband’s jealousy and relationship breakdown

Despite discoveries of her body parts in a country park and council tip, only  50 per cent of Mrs McCann's body has been recovered. Pictured: Yvonne and Thomas

Despite discoveries of her body parts in a country park and council tip, only  50 per cent of Mrs McCann's body has been recovered. Pictured: Yvonne and Thomas

Despite discoveries of her body parts in a country park and council tip, only  50 per cent of Mrs McCann’s body has been recovered. Pictured: Yvonne and Thomas

‘I have to live with myself for my actions on top of the punishment I am going to receive.

‘I punish myself more and more as the days go past but this was my own doing. 

‘I ask that one day my three children may consider forgiving me for the pain and heartache I have put them through. 

‘If they don’t that’s something I will have to get used to. I would like to stress how deeply, deeply sorry I am.’

McCann will be sentenced tomorrow. 

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