Back in the early 1990s, the city of Manchester in the northwest of England was a place with big ambitions.

City Council put together an effort for a second Olympic bid, and in many areas, there were large-scale projects to resurrect the city’s industrial reputation.

At that time, Manchester had changed over the decades toward betterment, but improvements happened at a much slower pace in some districts.

Some even said the 1990s Manchester was a city of superficial growth marked by a striking contrast between burgeoning trendy establishments and inland waterways.

Not far away was an endemic of poverty, street violence, and drug culture. The houses at Langworthy Road in the district of Moston were a testament to such a contrast. 

In those houses in late 1992 was one of the most extreme cases of violent crime across England.

Suzanne Capper, a 16-year-old girl from Bewley Walk, also in Moston, was kidnapped and kept prisoner in a house at Langworthy for seven days, during which the captors subjected her to brutal physical violence over a dispute of misplaced duffel jacket and pubic lice before eventually taking her to a secluded area in the outskirts of Stockport and burning her alive.

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10 /10 Searching For Home

Suzanne was 14 years old when her parents divorced. After the divorce, Suzanne lived with her stepfather at Bewley Walk, but she never felt home there.

Instead, she found what she thought was comfort in the company of Clifford Pook, a boy of the same age whom she met by a chance encounter by the side of the road.

Soon after this initial encounter, Suzanne frequently visited Langworthy Road No. 97, where Clifford’s sister Jane Powell (26) lived.

Suzanne would often stay the night, and instead of going to school the next day, she would spend time with Jean.

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9 /10 Neighbors And Acquaintances

Three doors away at house No. 91 was Bernadette McNeilly (23), a new neighbor who eventually ended up moving into house #97 as well. Jean and Bernadette had three children each.

Bernadette was often seen together with her boyfriend, Anthony Dudson (16). Another frequent visitor was Jeffrey Leigh (26), a former prison inmate, mostly to get his dose of amphetamines.

Glyn Powell (28), the estranged husband of Jean’s, was also there now and then. This group that Suzanne at first saw as friends was a bunch of drug users and dealers.



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8 /10 Getting Her Room Ready

Suzanne’s mother, Elizabeth Dunbar, was working at Calderwood Day Center. Suzanne would often visit her mother during work hours and spend time there.

In November 1992, she came up to the day center with some fresh bruises on her face. Her mother asked whether the bruises had been from a fight with other schoolgirls over boys, but the daughter only shrugged her shoulders.

Suzanne also wondered if she could move in with her mother without explaining why. Elizabeth told her to wait for a couple of weeks. Suzanne was supposed to move in on Christmas Eve.

7 /10 Cleaner At CIS Building

During her stay at Langworthy 97, Jean made Suzanne work as a cleaner at the CIS building in town. Whatever amount of money Suzanne earned, she was only allowed to take £5 a week, and the rest of it was for Jean.

In those days that she spent working, Elizabeth thought she was in school. In late November, Suzanne and Jean met Mohammed Yussif, a self-styled sheikh.

It was not clear how the two met with the man, but later on, Jean claimed to have been encouraged by Suzanne to have sex with him for money. Mr. Yussif denied this account.

6 /10 Pubic Lice

Jean and Bernadette were having sexual relationships with frequent visitors, including Glyn and Anthony. When all four of them contracted public lice in that November, the women pointed the finger at Suzanne.

They thought that because Suzanne sometimes slept in the downstairs bed, she was to blame for their complaint. Despite the lack of any logical explanation for this, Bernadette could convince everyone of the matter.

All four decided to exact revenge. Around the same time, Bernadette also lost a pink duffle coat worth £50, so she decided to blame Suzanne for that.

5 /10 The Kidnapping

When Suzanne was not at Langworthy 97, she stayed with her father at 6 Bewley Walk. On December 7, Bernadette and Jean knocked on the door and lured Suzanne back to their house.

They told her that a man she fancied was expecting her there. It was a lie; the persons waiting for her were Anthony and Glyn.

Upon seeing Suzanne, the men took her to the kitchen, shaving off all her hair and eyebrows. After all four made her clean up the mess, they spend hours kicking and beating her with a 3ft long wooden fork.

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Suzanne was locked in a cupboard overnight. However, her screams were upsetting all the six children living in the house.

The next day her captors decided to move her to Bernadette’s previous home at Langworthy 91, where the worst of the torture happened. Suzanne was spread-eagled using electrical wire and injected with amphetamines.

Bernadette took so many different drugs in her system that she lost her mind and began referring to herself as Chucky, a character from the 1988 American horror film Child’s Play. Other visitors, including Clifford and Jeffrey, took part in the torture.

3 /10 Seven Days Of Brutality

During the next six days, Suzanne was slowly becoming like an abused rag doll; some of her teeth were forcibly removed using a pair of pliers, her body was covered in her urine and feces, and she was bathed in undiluted disinfectant and scrubbed with a yard brush so hard that visible marks appeared days later.

They stuffed her mouth with socks to prevent her from screaming. In the early house of December 14, Suzanne was forced into the trunk of a stolen car driven by Glyn, accompanied by Jean, Bernadette, and Anthony.

2 /10 Burnt Alive

Glyn drove the car to Werneth Low, about 13 miles from Langworthy Road. In the scrubland on the outskirt of Stockport, they took Suzanne out of the trunk.

By now, she was semi-naked and barely able to stand on her own. Bernadette pushed her down into the woods and poured gasoline all over her.

Glyn borrowed a lighter from Clifford and applied it to Suzanne’s back. Convinced she was dead, all four drove back to Moston. It was around 5 a.m. But Suzanne was still alive and found by three men on their way to work.

1 /10 Naming Her Assailants

Before Suzanne was put into an induced coma at the Withington Hospital, she had the strength to name all her assailants. She died on December 18, 1992. All six were sentenced.

Jean Powell, Glyn Powell, and Bernadette McNeilly were sentenced to life imprisonment for the murder of Suzanne Capper.

Anthony Dudson and Clifford Pook were sentenced to 15 years in prison for false imprisonment and conspiracy to commit grievous bodily harm.

Jeffrey Leigh was sentenced to 12 years in jail for false imprisonment. Dudson was also found guilty of murder and ordered to be detained at Her Majesty’s pleasure.

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