Man denies murder of schoolgirl Nikki Allan, seven, who was stabbed to death nearly 30 years ago
- Nikki was found dead with 37 stab wounds in a derelict building in October 1992
- She was also beaten with a brick after going missing near her Sunderland home
- David Thomas Boyd, 54, of Teeside, plead not guilty at Newcastle Crown Court
The man accused of murdering a seven-year-old school girl almost 30 years ago pleaded not guilty today.
Nikki Allan was found dead with 37 stab wounds in a derelict building after going missing near her family home in Sunderland on October 7 1992.
David Thomas Boyd, 54, of Norton, Teesside, appeared at Newcastle Crown Court via a videolink from prison for a 25-minute hearing.
Wearing a mask over his chin, he pleaded not guilty when the clerk read out the charge.
Nikki’s mother Sharon Henderson sat in the public gallery as she was supported by well-wishers.
Judge Paul Sloan QC adjourned the case and said the trial, which could last up to six weeks, will take place in either January or April.
Seven-year-old Nikki Allan (pictured) was stabbed to death 37 times and beaten with a brick by her attacker after going missing near her family home in the Wear Garth area of Sunderland in October 7 1992
The family of Nikki are pictured during the funeral of the youngster in 1992
Floral tributes to Nikki Allan outside the derelict Old Exchange Building in Sunderland, where her body was found
Nikki Allan’s body was found inside Sunderland’s Old Exchange Building
Boyd was remanded in custody ahead of the trial.
The judge told Boyd: ‘I am adjourning your case to trial. The precise trial date will be confirmed, hopefully in the next few days.
‘There will be at least one further pre-trial hearing before the trial date.
‘In due course you will be required to provide a defence statement, setting out in detail your defence to the charge you face.’
Nikki had been at her grandparents’ flat before she vanished and a desperate search was launched when she failed to make return to her own home in the same block.
The following morning she was found inside the then-derelict Old Exchange Building after her coat and shoes were spotted.
Judge Sloan said the trial at Newcastle Crown Court would be tried before a High Court judge and a further pre-trial hearing would likely be needed in November.