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Man on partner murder charge.

A MID Wales man pleaded not guilty yesterday to murdering his partner.

Stephen Barry Mitchell, 54, of Springfields, Forden, near Welshpool, appeared at Mold Crown Court for a short plea and directions hearing yesterday morning.

Judge Merfyn Hughes, QC, adjourned the case for trial - which is expected to last between eight and 10 working days.

Mitchell is charged with murdering his 38-year-old partner Helen Healy on July 20 this year. The mother-oftwo lived at Lon Rhosod on the Trehafren Estate, Newtown, The judge said a provisional date had been earmarked for March next year for the trial to be conducted by a High Court judge. But Judge Hughes said he considered that an unacceptable delay.

The case was adjourned for a pre-trial review on October 11 so consideration can be given to releasing the case to one of two senior crown court judges on the circuit who are able to conduct murder trials.

Reporting restrictions were not lifted. Owen Edwards, defending, did not apply for bail and Mitchell was remanded in custody.
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Publication:Daily Post (Liverpool, England)
Date:Sep 21, 2002
Words:172
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