Remand in custody for murder accused

Court House-Sept-2013-05A 34-year-old man charged with the murder of five-year-old Leon Michael leFleming Jayet-Cole in Papanui last week was remanded in custody at an appearance in the Christchurch District Court today.

The man, James Stedman Roberts, a Redwood labourer, entered no plea at the brief appearance before Judge Tony Couch who remanded him to a High Court pre-trial call-over on June 19.

Kerry Cook, who appeared as defence counsel, said Roberts would not apply for bail and did not seek name suppression.

Someone in the public gallery called out something at Roberts as he was led out of court.

Judge Couch said the police had opposed media applications to film and photograph Roberts at his court appearance, because it might affect their continuing investigation. He refused photography “at this early stage”.

Leon was taken to hospital with serious head injuries and died two days later in hospital. Police have said the man charged with murder was known to the autistic boy.

The man made his court appearance during the morning session. Leon’s funeral was scheduled for 1pm.



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