Dean James Williams is alleged to have inflicted the injuries in a violent attack on Ian MacNeil, who was found unconscious on Victoria Road, near its junction with Errol Street, Middlesbrough, late on Sunday, November 28, 2021.
Mr MacNeil, 46, originally from the South Bank area of Middlesbrough, was taken for emergency treatment to the town’s James Cook University Hospital, where his death was confirmed days later, on December 3, 2021.
The, now, 50-year-old defendant, of Southfield Road, in Middlesbrough, was charged with Mr MacNeil’s murder a few weeks later and denied the charge at a brief hearing at Teesside Crown Court in February last year.
Read more: Dean Williams to stand trial accused of murder at Teesside Crown Court
He was remanded in custody and appeared again at the court in August last year, when the case was adjourned for trial to start today (July 24).
The accused was produced at court for the start of the trial, this afternoon, when a jury was selected and sworn in, after a check was made that potential members of the panel did not know anyone involved in the trial, whether witnesses, defendant, or the alleged victim.
Trial judge, The Recorder of Middlesbrough, Paul Watson KC, told selected jury members that the hearing is expected to run into a third week, starting August 7, by possibly a day or two, but he told them there would be no sitting in the case next Monday (July 31).
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He gave the usual warnings that they should limit their knowledge of the case to what they hear in court during the trial and not to do any research on the internet or social media.
As there were some matters of law to resolve he sent the jury home to return tomorrow (Tuesday, July 25), when they will hear the opening of the Crown’s case against the defendant, delivered by prosecuting counsel Jamie Hill KC.