DI Mannery led the investigation into the murder of Maxine Peacock and the brutal assault on Emily Bishop in January 2003, both crimes committed by Richard Hillman although no one knew this at the time.
Mannery, along with DC Holker, conducted a wholly unsympathetic interrogation of a grief-stricken Ashley Peacock, insinuating that he had a drink problem and, stating that he was no oil painting, asking blatantly if Ashley had paid money for a beautiful woman like Maxine to marry him. Holker also asked if Maxine had anyone else on the side. Ashley’s solicitor, Kathleen Fearn, demanded a break from the questioning but Mannery initially refused. When a break did occur, Mannery returned to say that Ashley was being released as an important development had occurred (Aidan Critchley, set up by Richard, had been found squatting in the vacant hardware shop on Victoria Street and arrested with items from the Peacocks' house in his possession, all planted by Hillman). Ashley bitterly asked how Mannery and Holker could sleep at night. The latter replied that they wouldn’t catch Maxine’s killer by being nice.
The next day, Mannery asked Aidan who he wanted with him during his upcoming interview, Critchley rejecting the presence of a Youth Offending Officer or any of his family. Remembering Ken Barlow’s attempts to get through to him when he was his mentoring tutor at Weatherfield Comprehensive, Aidan asked that Ken be approached.
Just over a month later, after Richard had confessed his crimes to a stunned Gail, Mannery was called into the police station to speak to her after she had initially told DC Dave Brett her story. This time, he gave her a far more sympathetic hearing than he had afforded Ashley a few weeks previously.
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