Becky Watts’ stepbrother appears in court over her killing

Becky Watts' stepbrother was charged with her murder
Becky Watts' stepbrother was charged with her murder

A man has appeared in court accused of killing teenager Becky Watts.

Nathan Matthews, 28, has been charged with murdering his stepsister, who was reported missing last month.

Body parts of the 16-year-old were later found at an address in the Barton Hill area of her home town, Bristol.

Matthews, of Warmley, South Gloucestershire, appeared at Bristol Crown Court via video-link today and spoke only to confirm his identity during the short hearing.

Among those sitting in the public gallery of the packed courtroom were Becky's grandfather, John Galsworty, and boyfriend, Luke Oberhansli.

Five other people have been charged in connection with the teenager's death.

Matthews' 21-year-old girlfriend, Shauna Hoare, of Bristol, is accused of perverting the course of justice. She also appeared via video-link during today's preliminary hearing.

The remaining four co-accused have been charged with helping dispose of and hiding Becky's body parts. They are Jaydene Parsons, 23, of Bristol, James Ireland, 23, of Avonmouth, and Karl and Donovan Demetrius, both 29, also from Bristol.

Parsons appeared via video-link, while Ireland listened to proceedings from the dock. The Demetrius brothers were not present.

Although none of the defendants has entered a plea at this stage, the Recorder of Bristol, Neil Ford, said he wanted to establish a timetable in the event of there being a trial.

The court was told that a plea hearing will take place on Tuesday August 4.

In the event of any not-guilty pleas, a trial will "provisionally" take place on October 5.

All six defendants were remanded in custody.

Becky, who was described by her family as "wonderful", vanished from her home in Crown Hill, Bristol, on February 19.

Police launched a huge search for the popular girl - which also prompted a social media campaign using the hashtag #FindBecky.

After news of her death emerged, bouquets, teddies and cards were left at her family home in Barton Court - with mourners attending a number of memorial services to pay their respects.

Two online fundraising pages have also been set up to help her family pay for her funeral. So far more than £10,000 has been raised.