Two men have appeared in court charged with murder and attempted murder following the death of a man in a suspected ‘hit and run’.

Shaun and Martin Breeze are both charged with the murder of Brian Darby and the attempted murder of three other people.

The 60-year-old died after an incident was reported in the Myton Way/Rings area of Ingleby Barwick, near Stockton, last Friday, at around 9.30pm.

The Northern Echo: Brian DarbyBrian Darby (Image: Contributor)

It is understood Mr Darby, who had a background in IT, was a project manager with the RSPB and lived in Ingleby Barwick.

Martin Breeze, 56, of Irthing Close, Ingleby Barwick, who appeared at Teesside Crown Court via videolink from prison, was not asked to enter pleas to any of the charges during the short hearing.

Shaun Breeze, 29, of Owls Grove, Ingleby Barwick, did not attend the hearing which was heard in his absence. His legal representative was not asked to enter any charges on his client’s behalf.

The Northern Echo: Photograph of the scene from Friday, February 9 Photograph of the scene from Friday, February 9 (Image: TERRY BLACKBURN)

Judge Jonathan Carroll adjourned the case until March 25 when a preliminary hearing will take place at the same court.

A provisional trial date has been listed for July 8 and both men were remanded in custody.

See more court stories from The Northern Echo by clicking here

Get all the latest crime and court updates, for less than the price of a coffee, with a Premium Plus digital subscription to The Northern Echo. Special offer currently in place for £5 for 5 months. Click here

Mr Darby’s family released a statement through Cleveland Police following his death, they said: “We are completely heartbroken at the sudden loss of our beautiful Brian. Nobody could ever understand just how much he meant to us all.

“He was special in so many ways. He was an absolute gentleman who cared so much about people. He always made time for us; nothing was ever too much trouble for him.

“Brian lived life to the full, he never wasted a moment. He loved to socialise and everyone adored being around him. Brian was also a proud grandad and his future with his grandchildren has now been taken away from him.

“We are grateful for the kind words of support from the community but we respectfully ask that we are now given some privacy to allow us to process what has happened as a family.”