A 34-year-old man has appeared in court charged with the murders of two women in Redcar.
Alan Bennett is accused of the murders of Lynne Freeman, 46, and Jodie Betteridge, 30, who both died after being attacked in separate attacks in Redcar on Wednesday.
Bennett appeared at Teesside Magistrates' Court for a one minute hearing today, where he confirmed his name and address, and will remain in custody until Tuesday when he is due back at Teesside Crown Court at 10am.
A Cleveland Police spokeswoman said:
"A 34 year old man arrested on suspicion of the murder of two women in Redcar on Wednesday has now been charged with two counts of murder."
Mrs Freeman's children - Sarah Helm, 28, James Helm, 27, Kimberley Helm, 25 and Lauren Freeman,18, previously said their mother always put others before herself.
In a statement issued through police they said:
"We shouldn't have to be writing a tribute to our mother who was taken from us so early. She should still be here to watch her four kids and grandkids grow.
"She was thriving in life and loved the volunteer work that she did in her church, and as a street angel for Redcar Beacons, always putting others before herself. She adored every one of her children and loved being a Grandma.
"She wore her heart on her sleeve, always made an effort for people and she really would go the extra mile. She gave so much and never asked for anything in return and we'll always be proud of her.
"You are loved beyond words and an amazing soul never dies, you'll never understand how much you will be missed. Our mother was always the angel looking after others but now the angels are looking after her. We love you so much mam."
Paying tribute to Miss Betteridge, Theresa Largan, 51, said she was like one of her own children.
"Jodie lived for her kids," she said. "I don't think I ever saw her on her own, she always had the tribe with her. I just want the family to know that we are all thinking of her and them."
Flowers for Miss Betteridge was left near the scene at Byland Close.
The dedication to her said that "thoughts are with your beautiful children".
Lynne Freeman was found with serious injuries in Mapleton Crescent on Wednesday night but later died.Read the full story ›
Cleveland Police say while formal identification has not yet taken place, they believe the victims of the murders in Redcar are 46-year-old Lynne Freeman and 30-year-old Jodie Betteridge.
Their families are receiving appropriate support from specially trained officers.
A post mortem examination has taken place regarding one victim and the post mortem examination for the other victim is due to take place today.
Police attended Teesside Magistrates' Court last night where Magistrates authorised an extension of the detention of a 34-year-old man arrested on Wednesday night.
This allows the investigation team to detain the man for a further period of time while they continue their inquiries.
Flowers continue to be laid outside a home where a woman was murdered in Byland Close in Redcar.
A second woman was killed in nearby Mapleton Crescent on the same evening on Wednesday March 23.
34-year-old local man has been arrested on suspicion of murder and remains in police custody.
Takeaway owners in Redcar and Cleveland are being encouraged to produce healthier options on their menus.
The Council's public health teams are going to provide free takeaway 'master classes' to try and tackle the problems associated with high fat, salt and sugar intake.
It's hoped it'll help tackle the obesity problem too.
Takeaway owners with a food hygiene rating of three and above can book on to one of two sessions to be held on Wednesday 13 April.
We all enjoy an occasional takeaway, but unfortunately the takeaway business has developed a reputation for serving calorie laden and relatively unhealthy food.
“We want to help takeaways overcome this reputation by introducing healthier ingredients, preparation and cooking methods without compromising on taste or profits.
“Attending these free sessions can also help takeaway businesses increase custom, widen customer choice, save money and improve business reputation.”
Our reporter Claire Montgomery has been in Redcar as Cleveland Police investigations continue into two murders in the town.
Cleveland Police have held a press conference following the murder of two women in Redcar.
- Officers were called to Mapleton Crescent in Redcar at 8.45pm on Wednesday night (23 March)
- They found a 46-year-old woman with serious injuries - she later sadly died.
- At 8.52pm officers received a report about a woman being violently assaulted on Byland Close in Redcar
- They found a 30-year-old woman who later died from her injuries
- Police are treating both deaths as murder and family liaison officers are supporting those involved
- Victims' families request privacy and officers say it's too early to release any more details
- 34-year-old local man has been arrested on suspicion of murder
Several police cars and ambulance crews remain at Byland Close on Teesside, where a large part of the Redcar estate has been cordoned off. Two women have died after two separate attacks in the area. One man has been arrested on suspicion of two counts of murder.
A man has been arrested on suspicion of two counts of murder after two deaths on Teesside.
Police received a report that a woman had been seriously injured at 8.45pm on March 23 at Mapleton Crescent, Redcar.
At 8.52pm, a second report was received from a member of the public reporting that a woman was being violently assaulted on Byland Close.
Both women had suffered serious injuries and died.
A 34-year-old man was arrested on suspicion of two counts of murder a short time after the incidents.
Any witnesses or anyone with information regarding the incidents is asked to contact Cleveland Police on 101 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.
The Business Minister Anna Soubry has told ITV Tyne Tees that there are "much more important things" for her to concentrate on in the wake of the resignation of Iain Duncan Smith.
He resigned at the weekend because of what he said were Treasury pressures to make cuts to benefits affecting disabled people.
Anna Soubry was asked the question by Tyne Tees reporter Rachel Bullock during her visit to Redcar, just over 6 months on from the closure of the SSI steelworks.
Ms. Soubry refused to comment any further on the matter, other than to say she was a "huge supporter" of seeing the UK stay in the EU.