Kewstoke murder suspect appears in court

PUBLISHED: 11:14 21 July 2011 | UPDATED: 12:30 21 July 2011

Julie Tottle (right of picture) with colleagues at Green Pastures Veterinary Centre in 2006

Julie Tottle (right of picture) with colleagues at Green Pastures Veterinary Centre in 2006

Archant

A MAN accused of murdering his wife in Kewstoke two weeks ago has appeared in court this morning (Thurs).

Stephen Hotson stands accused of killing Julia Tottle – known locally as Julie – at their home in Crookes Lane on July 5.

She died from head injuries after what police described as a ‘sustained attack’.

Prosecutor Kelly Marshall said Hotson, aged 44, is also accused of attempted arson with intent to endanger the life of Mrs Tottle’s brother Mark.

Hotson, dressed in a T-shirt and tracksuit trousers did not speak during today’s hearing, and has yet to enter a plea.

However, he was able to walk unaided to the dock at North Somerset Courthouse, despite only recently being discharged from Frenchay Hospital in Bristol.

He spent two weeks there receiving treatment after reportedly falling or jumping from an upstairs window at the couple’s Royal Oak Cottage home.

The case has been adjourned for a preliminary hearing at Bristol Crown Court on July 28, with a plea date pencilled in for October 27.

Hotson has been remanded in custody until then.

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