Starting his career as a cadet on Moss Side, John Stalker’s promotion up the police’s ranks came quickly. He first came to wider attention during the investigation into the Moors Murders, where he was one of the officers charged with examining Brady and Hindley’s taped confessions.
Promoted to Deputy Chief Constable in 1984, he was put in charge of the so-called “Stalker Report” investigating why so many unarmed IRA members had been shot dead by British security forces in recent years. From Irish Catholic stock, Stalker was immediately distrusted in the role by his superiors, who tried to link him to local organised crime figures (the so-called “Quality Street Gang” and then suspended him from the role. He was later cleared of any irregularities, but decided he’d had enough of the copper life and stepped down from the role in 1987.
It was in his retirement that he became famous to a new generation, as a flogger of cheap crap on daytime TV: