70yo Man charged with 1968 murder of toddler appears in court

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A pensioner accused of murdering an 18-month-old boy almost 50 years ago is to deny the charges, a court has heard. David Dearlove, 70, from Great Yarmouth, Norfolk, is charged with murdering toddler Paul Booth, from Haverton Hill, Stockton.

Dearlove stood in the dock at Teesside magistrates court, Middlesbrough, for a two-minute hearing. No pleas were entered and he made no application for bail.

Magistrates remanded him in custody to appear at Teesside crown court on Wednesday.

The charge was not read out but was clarified after the defendant – who wore a black T-shirt and had grey hair in a side parting – was led away.

Adam Hodge, defending, said: “I can say that the matters are denied. There will be a trial.”

Hodge said an application for bail would be made in the future.

Afterwards, the clerk said the charges Dearlove faces are one of murder on 1 October 1968, and one of neglect between January and October 1968.

Magistrates had applied a restriction on the media reporting the dead child’s identity but that was lifted following a challenge by the press.

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