James Allen, the man accused of murdering a woman from Whitby and a pensioner in Middlebrough, left the dock as the jury were brought in in protest at the court finishing time.
"I'll be off then," he said.
"Alright then," said the judge
The judge explained that Allen had the right to attend his trial but was exercising his right not to.
More top news
A couple in North Tyneside have seen off an intruder believed to be armed with a machete.
Brighter skies follow morning rain for both Saturday and Sunday. Winds stay strong. Mild Saturday, cooler on Sunday
Hartlepool United's great escape bid continues in League Two this afternoon - they welcome Cambridge to Victoria Park.