A police inspector whose wife was found in a lake in Poynton Park has admitted to killing his detective wife.

Insp Darren McKie, 43, changed his plea and admitted manslaughter on the ninth day of his trial.

He had denied manslaughter.

McKie, 43, of Burford Close in Wilmslow, continues to deny murdering wife Leanne, 39, a detective constable, and the trial continues at Chester Crown Court.

The father-of-three left his work at Stretford police station early on September 28 last year and killed his wife after she is said to have discovered he had applied for a £54,000 loan behind her back.

He is said to have strangled his wife at their home in Wilmslow and used his wife’s Mini Countryman car to dump her body face down in Poynton Lake while their children slept.

A post mortem examination on her body concluded she died of asphyxia probably caused by ‘manual strangulation’.

Jurors have heard the force was such to break two bones in her neck.

Leanne McKie murder trial live: Darren McKie admits manslaughter, but continues to deny he murdered wife - live updates

The couple, who both worked for GMP, had amassed £103,000 in debt with loan firms and builders renovating their Cheshire home, including granite worktops and under-floor heating.

The prosecution say the officer strangled her after she found out about the loan application as the family’s dire financial situation worsened.

Leanne McKie is said to have sent her husband an angry text calling him a ‘liar’ after she opened correspondence which included details of a £54,000 loan application and couple’s passports which had been used to apply for the money.

As the prosecution concluded it’s case at Chester Crown Court on Thursday, the defendant’s barrister Trevor Burke QC invited the clerk of the court to put the manslaughter charge to the defendant again.

He was ordered to stand in the glass-fronted dock and when asked how he pleaded he replied: “Guilty.”

His tearful family watched from the public gallery moments after he entered the changed plea.

Trevor Burke QC, defending, told the jury he would be calling no evidence and confirmed his client would not be giving evidence.

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On Wednesday the jurors had been told that the defendant would be giving evidence.

The judge, Mr Justice Spencer, told the jurors not to speculate or worry about the development and that they should not be tempted to discuss the case at home.

He said the defendant had admitted unlawfully killing his wife by his change of plea.

However, he stressed Insp McKie continued to deny murder and the issue for them to decide now was whether he ‘intended to kill or her or cause her really serious harm’.

The judge urged the jurors not to worry or speculate about the change of plea and sent the home for the day.

The trial resumes on Monday when the barristers are due to make their closing speeches.

Proceeding