Updated: Tuesday, 23rd September 2014 @ 6:34pm

Five questions Greater Manchester Police will be asking following tragic shooting of two female police officers

Five questions Greater Manchester Police will be asking following tragic shooting of two female police officers

By David Keane, Editor

It was described as 'a long and dark shadow' cast over Greater Manchester and the reaction around our news room has only echoed these sentiments.

The tragic shooting of two unarmed female police officers this morning has caused Chief Constable Peter Fahy to discuss the 'criminal conspiracy' that protected Dale Cregan's whereabouts for six weeks.

Mancunian Matters’ own reporter Dean Wilkins appeared on BBC News to describe the horror of residents in the area – and will discuss the wider ‘criminal conspiracy’ on Newsnight tonight.

Here’s five questions that Greater Manchester Police will be asking themselves following today’s tragic events.

1) How many armed Greater Manchester Police officers were on duty this morning in the Tameside area and what were they doing?

2) How did Dale Cregan manage to remain on the run for over six weeks so close to the vicinity of the incidents he was wanted in connection with?

3) How deep does the ‘criminal conspiracy’ Sir Peter Fahy mentioned go, considering the most wanted man in Greater Manchester remained at large for so long with such a large campaign to catch him, and such a large reward?

4) How were these men able to amass an arsenal that included weaponry usually only seen on the battlefield – and then repeatedly use them on the streets of Greater Manchester’s suburbs?

5) What measures were put in place to deal with call-outs in the vicinity of the original grenade attacks – and how far did that stretch?

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