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  1. Updates on Wednesday, 6 July 2016
  2. Ron King trial continues at Chelmsford Crown Court
  3. Airport police stop passenger with gun-style phone case
  4. More news, sport, travel and weather updates from 08:00 on Thursday

Live Reporting

By Laurence Cawley

All times stated are UK

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Our live coverage through the day

Thanks for joining us on today's Essex Live page.

Here's a flavour of the stories we've been covering:

  • Disabled pensioner Ronald King, who shot his wife in a care home, told police he modified the bullets so they would have maximum impact, Chelmsford Crown Court has heard
  • The driver of a car involved in a hit-and-run in Newmarket, which left an Essex estate agent needing both legs amputated, has been urged to come forward
  • Essex politicians have been reacting to the publication of the Chilcot report into the Iraq War

Join us again at 08:00 tomorrow morning for Thursday's news, sport, weather and more.

Photo: The seagull eyeing up the beach lovers

We just had to share this image sent in to us by Alan Conran.

"Took this picture of a seagull surveying the beach goers below near to Clacton Pier," says Alan.

As much as anything else, it's just nice to see a blue sky, the seaside and no rain.

Seagull at Clacton
Alan Conran

Weather: Dry night ahead, cloudy start tomorrow

Alex Dolan

BBC Look East weather

Time for a look at the weather - this evening should stay dry with spells of hazy sunshine.

Overnight it's going to be dry with clear intervals but also lots of cloud.

Lows of 13C, 55F.

Weather map

Tomorrow should be a mainly dry day but it'll be cloudy, too, with the chance of some patchy drizzle later and highs of 21C (70F). 

Check the latest forecast for where you live with BBC Weather.

What Twitter has to say about THAT gun-style phone case

Laurence Cawley

BBC News

People have reacted with surprise that anybody would go into an airport with a phone case shaped like a gun handle.

Essex Police released images of the case earlier after the man walked into Stansted Airport.

On Twitter Philip Padley said: "Some people have no common sense."

David Preston meanwhile tweeted: "There are apps for many things, but not one for stupidity."

Twitter comments about the gun case
Essex Police/Twitter

Colchester sign Forest Green's Guthrie

In sport... and League Two side Colchester United sign forward Kurtis Guthrie from Forest Green Rovers for an undisclosed fee.

Meanwhile, U's defenders Tom Eastman, 24, and Jamie Harney, 20, have signed new one-year contracts.  

Kurtis Guthrie
Getty Images

Rita King care home shooting: 'I asked her if she’d had enough and she said yes'

Charlotte Rose

BBC Essex

Chelmsford Crown Court has heard about Ronald King's relationship with his wife Rita from interviews he gave to police.

The pair would have been married for 50 years this September, he told officers, and he visited her at De La Mer House, a care home, "once or twice a week".

"She used to wait for me to have her breakfast – she said it used to brighten her day," Mr King said.

Chelmsford Crown Court

But Mrs King started crying when her husband told her he couldn't cope with her coming home.

"I asked her if she’d had enough and she said yes," Mr King told police.

When asked if Mrs King knew he was planning on taking her life, Mr King replied: "She thought that we were going back home."

The trial continues.

Rita King 'would hardly recognise' husband

Charlotte Rose

BBC Essex

During an interview with Det Con Claire Jennings from Essex Police, Ronald King said his wife's dementia had worsened in the months leading to her death.

He claimed her health went downhill after her walking frame was taken away and she was given a wheelchair. 

"Sometimes she was alright and another day I'd go [to De La Mer Home] and she'd hardly recognise me," he said.

Chelmsford Crown Court was played a video of Mr King's interview with police. He denies murder.

Ronald King trial: 'He wanted to pick something up'

Charlotte Rose

BBC Essex

A taxi driver has told how a pensioner accused of murdering his wife asked him to take him home briefly so he could "pick something up".

Edward Prevost told Chelmsford Crown Court Ronald King, 87, was one of his regular fares who he saw sometimes twice a week.

He waited 10 minutes outside Mr King's home in Walton. It is understood he had gone to collect a World War Two revolver.

He said: "I don’t recall him saying much on journey back. On collecting him he said he felt woozy.

"When I got back to the office I was told the news that Ron had shot his wife.

"I was quite surprised to be honest – I never would have expected him to do anything like that."

'I did it, I killed my wife,' court hears

Charlotte Rose

BBC Essex

A senior care worker has told a jury she heard Ronald King say "I did it, I killed my wife" after shooting her.

Cecelia Cole then showed Chelmsford Crown Court how Mr King held the weapon, a 1934 Enfield revolver, up to his head.

Rita King and Ronald King

But Mr King, she said, held the gun with shaking arms and declared: "I can't do it".

Mrs Cole ran to the lounge to find Mr King's wife of 50 years Rita. When she entered the room, the court was told it smelled like a "fire cracker had gone off". 

The trial continues.

'We are a forgiving family' says cousin of Stansted estate agent

Jodie Smith

BBC News

The cousin of an Essex estate agent who lost both of his legs after a hit-and-run in Newmarket have urged the driver of the car to come forward.

Friends and family are rallying round Shaun Whiter, who works in Stansted and who stopped to help a friend change a tyre on Friday. 

A car crashed into him and his friend Joey Abbs, but then drove off - leaving Shaun with injuries that were so severe he had to have both legs amputated. 

Shaun Whiter
David Lee

His cousin Charlotte O'Brien said: "Shaun was left for dead. The doctors have told us they can't believe he's alive. 

"He just can't get his head around the fact that he was left, but we are a forgiving family.

"We totally understand that in some circumstances you may panic and drive away, but just to make things a little bit easier for Shaun's recovery, we'd like the person to come forward."

Bopara disciplined over 'serious dissent'

Ben Fryer

BBC Essex sport

The Essex one-day captain Ravi Bopara has been disciplined by the England and Wales Cricket Board for showing 'serious dissent' in a T20 Blast game against Hampshire last month.

He could face a suspension for any similar incidents in the future.

Ravi Bopara
Getty Images

Airport police stop passenger with gun-style phone case

Essex Police have released images of a phone case spotted in the back pocket of a passenger... which caused him to be stopped earlier at Stansted Airport.

Police say the person risks being charged either with a public order offence or of carrying an imitation firearm in a public space.

We hope to have more details on the incident shortly.

View more on twitter
The iPhone case
Essex Police

Iraq and the East of England: In numbers

Nic Rigby

BBC News

29 troops from the East of England were killed in the Iraq conflict

Iraq War: How our MPs voted in 2003

The six red caps from Colchester killed in 2003

It was 13 years ago, in March 2003, that MPs were asked to vote on the government motion authorising "all means necessary" for disarming Saddam Hussein. There was a rebel motion in parliament opposing military action.

Six officers from the Royal Military Police, based in Colchester, died in the conflict that followed.

Here's how our MPs at the time voted:

For military action:

  • Bernard Jenkin (North Essex)
  • Simon Burns (Chelmsford West) 
  • Eric Pickles (Brentwood & Ongar) 
  • John Whittingdale (Maldon & Chelmsford East) 
  • Mark Francois (Rayleigh) 
  • Alan Hurst (Braintree) 
  • Ivan Henderson (Harwich) 
  • Andrew Mackinlay (Thurrock) 
  • Bill Rammell (Harlow) 
  • Angela Smith (Basildon)
  • David Amess (Southend West) 
  • Teddy Taylor (Rochford and Southend East)

Against military action:

  • John Baron (Billericay)
  • Bob Russell (Colchester)

Live coverage on the Chilcot report

Iraq War: Two sides 13 years on

Former Colchester MP Sir Bob Russell voted against the war.

He said the Chilcot report was a "vindication" of the Liberal Democrats who unanimously voted against the invasion of Iraq.

"All options had not been exhausted," he said. 

"It became quite clear that Tony Blair wanted to back George Bush. Troops from Colchester were sent to Iraq. Not all of them came back. We are still suffering the consequences."

Sir Bob Russell

Iraq War: Two sides 13 years on

As Sir John Chilcot concludes the invasion of Iraq in 2003 was "not a last resort", two Essex MPs who disagreed on the war give their views.

North Essex MP Bernard Jenkin, voted for the war. He said: "It is far too soon to draw a judgement from this report. I have not read it yet."

He said he hoped in the future intelligence would never be used as propaganda by governments and that there would be better post-conflict planning.

"We really should have seen it through," he said. "We have contributed to the chaos."

Graphic: 179 troops were killed in the Iraq conflict, 28 were from the East of England

Ron King Trial: Care worker reported comment

Charlotte Rose

BBC Essex

A care worker who heard Ron King claim his wife would not be at a care home in two days time took it to mean he would be taking her home.

Earlier the jury heard of a brief altercation between Mr King and Danielle Cross in which Mr King said: "Rita won't be here by Monday anyway."

Ms Cross told the jury his comment was reported to a senior member of staff, but she took it to mean he planned to remove her from the De La Mer care home in Walton-on-the-Naze.

The trial continues.

Ron King Trial: 'Rita won't be here by Monday'

Charlotte Rose

BBC Essex

A disabled pensioner accused of murdering his wife in a care home told a care worker she would not be alive for long, a jury has been told.

De La Mer House

Rita King, 81, died at De La Mer House in Walton-on-the-Naze, Essex, on 28 December last year. Her husband Ronald, 87, is on trial at Chelmsford Crown Court for her murder.

Care worker Danielle Cross described to the court an altercation she had with Mr King two days before the death of his wife.

While she was making dinner for residents at the De La Mer care home Mr King said Mrs King needed the toilet. It was Boxing Day - a Saturday.

He was rude, she told the jury, and said: "I can never find a carer when I need one."

Mr King then added: "Rita won't be here by Monday anyway", she said.

We'll have more from the trial throughout the day.

Rita King killing trial resumes

The trial of a disabled pensioner accused of murdering his wife at a care home has resumed this morning.

Rita and Ron King

Rita King, 81, died at De La Mer House in Walton-on-the-Naze, Essex, on 28 December last year.

Her husband Ronald, 87, is on trial at Chelmsford Crown Court. He denies murder.

The case continues.

Toddler in Basildon light fall near miss

A Basildon mother has told how a ceiling light collapsed next to her toddler son in his pushchair.

As first reported in the Echo Kim Heckman was walking towards a shoe shop in Basildon bus station when one of the ceiling lights fell to the ground. 

smashed light
Kim Heckmann

"It just happened so quick," she told BBC Essex earlier. "I didn't actually see the light coming down, I heard a big smash and then I was in shock. It was right where people queue for buses. It could have been a lot worse."

Her son Ronny was unharmed.

Kim Heckmann

Nurse cautioned over shop thefts

A nurse at Princess Alexandra Hospital in Harlow has been handed a two-year caution after she admitted three acts of shoplifting.

Princess Alexandra Hospital in Harlow

Giovanna Banjac was given three police cautions in December after making off with about £150 worth of goods.

A Nursing and Midwifery conduct panel heard the "extremely remorseful and ashamed" Mrs Banjac had referred herself to the panel and said “I took items from three shops and I put them in my bag without paying.

"I don’t know why I did what I did, that was not my intention when I left home that day," she told the panel.

In giving her a two year caution, the panel found Mrs Banjac "has demonstrated real insight into the impact that her actions have had".

Man dies following Basildon collision

Sonia Watson

BBC Essex

Essex Police have tweeted that a man has died following a collision yesterday evening in Basildon.

View more on twitter

Police were called to Southernhay after an 84-year-old pedestrian from Westcliff was collided with a Nissan Primera near the Gala bingo hall.He suffered multiple injuries and was airlifted to the Royal London Hospital, where he died.

Weather: Fine and dry

Kate Kinsella

BBC Look East weather

Watch on for some good weather news...

For the detailed forecast where you live visit BBC Weather.

Essex MP wants to know 'what Number 10 knew'

Laurence Cawley

BBC News

John Barron

Basildon and Billericay MP John Barron, who quit his post as a shadow health minister over the Iraq War, says he hopes the Chilcot report will reveal what the government knew before the conflict.

The former soldier said: "My view is that war should always be the measure of last resort.

"I believe we went to war on a false premise. I want to know whether Number 10 intentionally deceive us."

Father of fallen soldier's Chilcot hope

The father of a Colchester-based soldier killed in Iraq in 2003 says he hopes the war will rest on the consciences of politicians for the "rest of their lives".

Mike Aston's son Cpl Russell Aston, 30, was one of six Royal Military Police officers killed when a 400-strong group of Iraqis attacked a police station in Majar al-Kabir in June 2003.

Corporal Russell Aston

Speaking ahead of the Chilcot report's publication later, Mr Aston said: "There are people on the political side who, quite frankly, should have it on their consciences for the rest of their lives, like Tony Blair and Jack Straw, who said in the House of Commons two days after my son was killed that they would not rest until they had brought the killers to justice.

"It still has not happened."

A warm Wednesday welcome

Laurence Cawley

BBC News

Good morning and welcome to the Local Live page for Essex.

As well as covering breaking news from around the county, we will be:

  • Following the trial of Ron King who is accused of murdering his wife Rita at a Walton-on-the-Naze care home