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David Dearlove found guilty of 1968 Paul Booth murder

David Dearlove found guilty of 1968 Paul Booth murder

David Dearlove had denied murder
A man who swung his toddler stepson by the ankles and smashed his head into a fireplace has been convicted of murder.David Dearlove, 71, had denied killing 19-month-old Paul Booth at their home in Stockton-on-Tees in 1968.Paul's brother Peter, who was three years old when he witnessed the attack after he crept downstairs for a drink, went to police in 2015.Dearlove, now of Great Yarmouth, Norfolk, will be sentenced at Teesside Crown Court later.The Facebook post that caught a killer
The inquest into Paul's death in 1968 recorded an open verdict.
David Dearlove claimed Paul Booth was injured when he fell out of bed
But in 2015, Peter went to the police after seeing a photo on Facebook of his little brother sitting on Dearlove's knee.He said as a three-year-old he had seen Dearlove swinging Paul round their living room in Stockton and witnessed the boy's head striking the fireplace.The court heard Dearlove had been violent towards Peter and Paul as well as their sister Stephanie Marron who also accused him of cruelty, saying he punched her and pulled her down the stairs.During the trial, Dearlove claimed Paul suffered the fatal head injury when he fell out of bed.
The family was living in Stockton at the time of Paul Booth's death
Home Office pathologist Mark Egan demonstrated how the toddler could have died by swinging a doll by the ankles and banging its head on the surface of the witness box, causing some of the 10 men and two women of the jury to weep.He also said he believed it would have taken separate blows to cause the "z-shaped" skull fracture on the side of Paul's head.Dearlove was also convicted of child cruelty charges, and Mr Justice Males warned him he faced a mandatory life term.
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