Further medical tests to establish cause of woman’s death

The small rented property on Peakstones Farm in Bradford where the body of a woman was found
The small rented property on Peakstones Farm in Bradford where the body of a woman was found

A judge has been told that further medical examinations are to take place to try to establish the cause of death of 44-year-old woman whose body was found at a bungalow in Shelf last month.

The discovery of Marie Johnston’s body at a property on Soaper Lane led to the arrest of 34-year-old Matthew Dean and he made his first appearance before Bradford Crown Court.

Dean, also of Soaper Lane, took part in the brief hearing via a video link to HMP Leeds where he is currently remanded in custody.

During the hearing before Judge Jonathan Rose Dean pleaded not guilty to a charge of sexual assault on Marie Johnston last October and a separate allegation of causing her grievous bodily harm with intent between March 30 and April 3 this year.

Prosecutor Timothy Capstick estimated that Dean’s trial could last four days and the trial date was set for September 5.

Mr Capstick told Judge Rose that a cause of death had still not been established and enquiries were on-going.

“There are further medical examinations that are taking place that may help to establish the cause of death in this case,” said Mr Capstick.

Judge Rose told Dean he was being remanded in custody until a further pre-trial hearing which will take place on August 19.