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Trial date set for Conrad Iyayi accused of murdering wife Katy Harris

A provisional trial date has been set for a 44-year-old Derby man alleged to have murdered his art teacher wife in Littleover.

Appearing over a video link from HMP Nottingham, Conrad Iyayi was not asked to enter any pleas at the short hearing at Derby Crown Court.

Wearing a grey tracksuit, glasses and a face mask, the defendant spoke only to confirm his name.

His wife, Kathryn Jane Harris, known as Katy and also 44, was found with critical injuries at her home in Oak Crescent, Littleover, at around 7.15am on Sunday morning (February 6) and was pronounced dead at the scene.

Police said her family has been informed and are receiving support from specialist officers.

Judge Nirmal Shant QC, Honorary Recorder of Derby, set a trial date to August 3 and remanded Iyayi into custody.

Rhodri James, his barrister, did not apply for bail on his client’s behalf.

Judge Shant said: “I know this is early days but is this likely to be a psychiatric issue?”

Mr James replied: “Yes, your honour and (we will be seeking) a toxicology report.”

Judge Shant said: “Mr Iyayi, can you hear the court?”

He replied: “Yes.”

Judge Shant said: “There will be a further hearing on March 21 and on that date you will be expected to tender your plea and (therefore) whether this will be a trial or not.

“Your trial date has been fixed to August 3.”

Ms Harris had worked at St Clare’s School, in Mickleover, until her death at the weekend.

It is a community special needs school for children with learning difficulties, autism and physical impairment.

Derbyshire Live understands that Ms Harris taught art at the school, which has around 150 pupils.

Headteacher at the school, Laura Russell said: “We are all shocked and saddened by this terrible news and our thoughts and prayers are with Katy’s friends and family at this awful time.

“Katy was a big part of the St Clare’s family and made a real difference to the students she taught.

“We would ask for privacy and space to help students, parents and staff come to terms with her death.”

Read more Derbyshire crime stories

On social media, there was an outpouring of tributes to the teacher from students and parents of students alike.

One said: “Rip so sad she was such a nice woman she was my art teacher at school sending love to family and at Clare’s school.”

Another said: “Rip Katy, sending love to family and friends. You were a wonderful teacher.”

One parent said: “My son’s teacher I can’t tell him I will let the school tell him poor women horrible news for everyone that new her and her family.”

On Monday, February 7, there remained a heavy police presence in Oak Crescent with a number of vehicles and forensics officers at the scene.

Police are eager to hear from anyone who may be able to help with the investigation.

Detectives are especially keen to speak to any drivers with dashcam who drove along The Hollow, in Littleover, between midnight and 7.15am on Sunday.

Anyone with information can call the police on 1010 quoting reference number 22*073295.

People can also give in formation anonymously and free of charge by calling Crimestoppers on 0800 555111 or by visiting www.crimestoppers-uk.org.

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