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Man who died in Carlisle suffered “single stab wound to the heart”, court told

John Cingelis

A COURT has heard a man who died in Carlisle, sparking a police round-the-clock murder investigation, suffered a single stab wound to his heart.

John Cingelis, who was aged 37 and from Brantwood Avenue in Carlisle, died following an incident on Easter Sunday. Police had been called by the North West Ambulance Service to his address, on the Harraby estate, at 10-49am following a report that two men had suffered stab wounds.

Mr Cingelis was pronounced dead, while a second male, Barry Cartwright, was taken to the city’s Cumberland Infirmary, where he underwent treatment before being discharged.

As police announced they were conducting a round-the-clock probe, two other men were arrested and charged. Blair Dixon, 24, of Welsh Road, and 25-year-old Alfonso Bitton, of Eldon Drive, appeared over a video link from custody at Carlisle Crown Court this morning (THURS).

Both stand charged with the alleged murder of Mr Cingelis, and allegedly wounding Mr Cartwright with intent to cause him grievous bodily harm.

During a 20-minute hearing in front of Judge Mark Brown, Dixon and Bitton spoke only to confirm their identities and nationalities, and raised hands to indicate they could hear proceedings clearly.

Judge Brown, prosecutor Charles Brown and defence lawyers Mark Shepherd and Kim Whittlestone all appeared remotely over Skype links.

Prosecutor Mr Brown gave a brief summary of the case, revealing that Mr Cingelis had “died from a single stab wound to the heart”, while Mr Cartwright had suffered a “severe injury to his arm”.

A timetable for the progression of the case was outlined by the prosecutor, and a trial date was listed for November 9. It was estimated that a trial in front of a jury at the crown court would last around two weeks.

No pleas were entered by either defendant, and it was confirmed that no bail applications would be made at the hearing.

Both Dixon and Bitton were remanded in custody by His Honour Judge Brown. The pair are next due to appear at Carlisle Crown Court for a plea and case management hearing on September 7.

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