One of the defendants in the Everton shallow grave murder trial at Nottingham Crown Court has been cleared.
Mark Bingham, aged 50, of Fishponds Road West, Woodthorpe, Sheffield, was found not guilty by the jury late this afternoon.
No verdict has yet been reached for Angela Dowling, aged 48, of Windmill Avenue, Conisbrough, Doncaster; and Matthew Duffy, aged 23, of Sussex Street, Balby, Doncaster.
The jury retired shortly before 11am today after Judge Greg Dickinson, QC, completed his summing up of the case.
They returned to tell the judge Bingham was innocent six hours later.
Dowling’s lodger, Stephen Schofield, 31, also of Windmill Avenue, has previously admitted the murder and is awaiting sentence.
During the three and a half week long trial, the court heard how Mr Easton, 50, died as a result of being stabbed and beaten, in what the prosecution claim was a ‘horrific and violent’ attack off Harwell Sluice Lane, Everton, on February 1 last year, before he was buried alive in a ditch.
Dowling and Duffy remain in custody during the jury’s discussions, which will resume this morning.