County Durham mother charged with murder of son, two
A County Durham woman who took the lifeless body of her two-year-old to a police station has been charged with his murder.
Melanie Ruddell, 39, of Castle Eden, arrived at Peterlee police station on 9 August carrying her son Christy.
A post-mortem examination found the boy had been strangled.
She made a brief appearance before magistrates at Peterlee and the case was referred to Newcastle Crown Court for a further hearing later.
Durham Police said the charge came after officers were given clearance to speak to Mrs Ruddell, who had been receiving hospital treatment.
Mrs Ruddell, of Dean View, appeared for a two-minute hearing before magistrates.
She is accused of killing her son at the home of her brother in West Rainton, County Durham.