Norfolk

Man accused of Peter Wrighton's murder to be assessed by psychiatrist

Peter Wrighton, seated, with a dog on his lap Image copyright AFP
Image caption Peter Wrighton had been walking his dogs Gemma and Dylan when he was attacked

A man charged with the murder of a dog walker will be assessed by a psychiatrist before entering a plea.

Alexander Palmer appeared via videolink at Norwich Crown Court and spoke only to confirm his name.

The 24-year-old is accused of repeatedly stabbing 83-year-old Peter Wrighton, whose body was found in woodland near East Harling on 5 August.

Mr Palmer, of Cringleford, Norfolk was remanded in custody and will remain at HMP Belmarsh.

Defence barrister Paul Raudnitz told the court "there may be a psychiatric dimension to this case, including a fitness to plea".

Image copyright Instagram
Image caption Alexander Palmer did not enter a plea during the 12-minute hearing at Norwich Crown Court

Judge Stephen Holt said he was reluctant to adjourn the hearing but agreed to do so until 17 November.

"It appears to me that I've got to, as there are serious issues that need to be sorted out by experts," he said.

A provisional trial date has been set for 12 February.

Mr Wrighton, from Banham, Norfolk, was walking his two dogs when he was attacked in woods. He had been repeatedly stabbed in the head and neck.

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