Manchester pensioner who killed his wife says he ‘killed her for love’

Suicide Pact Manchester

Graham Mansfield, 73, killed his wife Dyanne after her lung cancer diagnosis (Image: PA)

A pensioner who killed his wife by cutting her throat has revealed how the couple plotted a joint suicide pact.

Graham Mansfield, 73, of Hale, Greater Manchester, was released on trial on Thursday despite being convicted of the manslaughter of Dyanne Mansfield, 71.

The jury chose the alternative conviction when they acquitted him of murder, and the judge issued a two-year suspended sentence.

Mr Justice Goose said he was “completely satisfied” that the accused acted out of “love” and “compassion” towards his wife.

Mansfield’s wife was diagnosed with stage four lung cancer in October 2020 and the plan for a suicide pact began when the couple returned from hospital.

He asked her if she would be willing to have him kill her if “things got too bad,” Manchester Crown Court jurors heard.

In March last year, Dyanne said she was in excruciating pain, telling her husband, “I’ve had enough, I can’t take it anymore.”

On March 22, they drove to find a “quiet” and “comfortable” place to fulfill the pact, but instead chose to use their garden the next day.


Mansfield avoided jail time after receiving a suspended sentence (Image: PA)


Dyanne was found by police slumped in a chair at the end of the garden (Image: PA)

In the days before, Mansfield had begun making plans, including terminating the papers, having the milk delivered and the window cleaned, emptying the freezer and tidying up the house.

The couple spent their final moments “crying and telling each other how much we loved each other,” the court was told.

Around 5 p.m. on that fateful day, Dyanne drank a glass of red wine while Mansfield downed a can of lager and a whiskey and a soda.

After that, they both went to the back of the garden, where two chairs were standing next to each other.

He asked, “Are you ready?” to which his wife replied, “Yes, I won’t make any noise,” the jury heard.


The couple met in 1974 (Image: PA)


Attorney Rachel Fletcher with Mansfield after the court hearing (Image: PA)

He then went behind the chair she was sitting in and slit her throat with a Stanley knife.

Mansfield then tried to kill himself but passed out instead. The next day he called the police and explained everything that had happened.

Officers found Dyanne slumped in a chair at the end of her yard. A note to police left nearby read: “We have decided to take our own lives.”

The couple first met in a pub in Wythenshawe on New Year’s Eve 1974 and married six years later.

According to Dyanne, it was a long and happy marriage and the couple enjoyed activities together, such as hiking, gardening and biking.

From home, Mansfield told the Manchester Evening News about the suicide pact the couple had made.

He told his wife, “I can’t live without you, Dyanne,” and said he would agree to kill her on “one condition” — that he “had to go with her.”

“In a weird way, it gave me strength. I also knew I was going to die. That’s something I could focus on,” he added.

“Dyanne was a wonderful person. She was my whole world. We didn’t need anyone anymore. We just needed each other. We had a wonderful life together.”

Mansfield recalled the horrific moment he cut his wife’s throat, saying: “It went to every fiber of my body.

“I ran around the chair to the front. I said, “What have I done?” I sat down next to her, put my arm around her and told her I love her.”

Mansfield eventually faced a four-day murder trial at Manchester Crown Court, and it took the jury just 90 minutes to reach their verdict.

He says he felt “excitement” when the verdict was reached, but doesn’t think the case should have gone to trial in the first place.

Mansfield has called for the legalization of euthanasia in the UK and said if the Covid lockdown hadn’t halted international travel they would have considered going to Dignitas in Switzerland.

He added: “We didn’t do anything wrong. We didn’t need permission from other people. It was our decision. I killed her with love.

“If someone is terminally ill, if they’re in pain, what’s wrong with saying I don’t want to live anymore?”

He called euthanasia a “humane and sane way of doing things,” adding, “The law required us to resort to this barbaric method.”

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Justin Scacco

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