Jo Cox MP death: Murder accused Thomas Mair refuses to enter pleas

Jo Cox by her houseboat Image copyright Brendan Cox
Image caption Labour MP Jo Cox died after being attacked in her constituency in Birstall

A man accused of killing the Labour MP Jo Cox refused to enter pleas as he appeared in court.

Thomas Mair, 53, from Birstall, remained silent when asked to plead at the Old Bailey on four charges relating to Mrs Cox's death.

Mrs Cox, 41, who was a married mother-of-two, was shot and stabbed in Birstall, West Yorkshire, in June.

In the light of Mr Mair's silence, the judge ordered that not guilty pleas should be entered on his behalf.

The defendant is accused of murder, grievous bodily harm, possession of a firearm with intent to commit an indictable offence and possession of an offensive weapon - a dagger.

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He appeared via video-link from Belmarsh prison and spoke only to confirm his name.

'Grief and sympathy'

Members of Mrs Cox's family were in court to witness proceedings.

The judge, Mr Justice Wilkie, adjourned the case for a further hearing on 28 October and a provisional date for a four-week trial has been fixed for 14 November.

Mrs Cox, who was elected MP for Batley and Spen at the 2015 General Election, was about to attend a constituency surgery when she was killed on June 16.

Her death prompted what her family described as an "outpouring of genuine grief and sympathy".

Image copyright PA
Image caption Mrs Cox's parents (centre) and sister (right) said they had been overwhelmed by the tributes paid to her
Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption David Cameron and Jeremy Corbyn were amongst those who paid tribute to Mrs Cox following her death

The then Prime Minister David Cameron said Mrs Cox was a "bright star" and Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn described her as "a much loved colleague".

She had grown up in the area, attending Heckmondwike Grammar School, before attending Cambridge University.

Prior to entering Parliament Mrs Cox had worked for a number of charities including Oxfam, Save the Children and the NSPCC.

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