A MAN is to stand trial later this year accused of carrying out a house burglary while armed with a claw hammer.

Dale Watson is alleged to have broken into the property in Trimdon Village from where he is said to have taken £50 in cash, a Pandora-make bracelet, valued at £100, and a necklace, said to be worth £125.

The 29-year-old defendant, of Sunnyside Avenue, Shildon, appeared at a plea hearing at Durham Crown Court today (Wenesday, June 22), more than two years after the crime.

He denied the single charge put to him of aggravated burglary.

Asked by Judge James Adkin about the delay in the case reaching the crown court, given that forensic evidence relating to a cup said to be carrying the defendant’s dna has been available since early June, 2020, Liam O’Brien, for the Crown, said he had no explanation why it has taken so long to process through the system.

Judge Adkin said an explanation has ben put forward by the defence as to why the defendant’s dna was on a piece of broken crockery at the scene of the burglary.

Read more: Victim of Trimdon Station burglary to sell home

The judge adjourned the case for a trial of between two and three days to be heard at the court, starting on Wednesday November 23.

Judge Adkin bailed the defendant to return to court for the trial, with a condition that he does not contact prosecution witnesses.

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