As dead-eyed, sharp-suited predator Frank Foster learns his fate in Coronation Street tonight, we look at those who’ve previously faced trial on the soap. Deirdre (1998)
The saga of the Weatherfield One only goes to highlight how jurors on Coronation Street wouldn’t recognise the truth if it leapt into their box in the courtroom and whacked them around the head with a gavel. Deirdre – the brains behind numerous cases of fraud? She couldn’t even do Simon’s maths homework. Of course, bogus airline pilot Jon Lindsay was the real criminal mastermind, but this didn’t stop Deirdre being sent down with only Margi Clarke for company. Thankfully, the then Prime Minister, Tony Blair, got shirty in the Commons and came to Sexy Specs’s rescue.
“No, you’ve got it wrong, you’ve made a mistake!” yelled Toxic Tracy after being found guilty of crimes against sexy dancing, sorry, murder. Yet it wasn’t a mistake as Tracy had donned a leather mini and performed a ‘hot’ routine to Oasis’s Whatever for philandering Charlie Stubbs before braining him with a conveniently placed sculpture. Three years later, she was released thanks to unreliable evidence in order to spoil Christmas for those on the Street and us watching at home.
It’s fair to say that David Platt got a light sentence for his crimes. Four months in a young offenders’ institution after smashing up the Street with a metal pole and interrupting Rita’s shampoo and set? He should have been birched to within an inch of his life just for daring to lay a finger on Ken. Only Mike Baldwin’s allowed to roughhouse with Barlow, that’s the law! Of course, the upside to Devil Spawn David being incarcerated was that he was banged up with the off-kilter legend that was Graeme Proctor and a classic Street comedy double act was formed.
Thanks to Joe McIntyre’s useless attempts to fake his own death (he ended up drowning), Gail was put on trial and locked up for his murder. It didn’t help that son David bribed a woman called Anka who was supposed to be Gail’s surprise witness, but who then failed to show up at the trial. Yeah, nice one Borstal Boy! Looking like a caged fieldmouse, Gail (rocking those mum jeans, it has to be said) ended up in the cells where she soon became the prey of panto villainess Tracy Barlow. Luckily for Gail (if not for viewers), justice was eventually done and she walked free.
Also no stranger to a prison-issue tabard is the wretched, howling Fizbomb. Having heroically given birth to Hope while cross-eyed and lying in the rubble of the tram crash, Fiz’s luck certainly didn’t improve once her baby was back home. Husband John “all I wanted to do was teach” Stape had left a trail of dead bodies in his wake and the cops were soon beating a path to his door. Jumping on a ferry to Holyhead, the Stapeinator left Fiz to carry the can, which she did by getting a sentence of 15 years. To the surprise of parents who have schooled their kids on CBeebies, the governor at Fiz’s nick turned out to be Rossetti Wordsworth from Story Makers.