Mother charged with murder of son, two, near Plymouth
A MOTHER accused of murdering her two-year-old son has appeared in court this morning.
Angela Vane, aged 40, stood in the dock flanked by two security guards at Torquay Magistrates’ Court.
She has been charged with the murder of toddler Shaun O’Neill.
The youngster’s body was found in Modbury on Saturday morning.
Vane did not enter a plea at this morning’s hearing.
She will appear at Plymouth Crown Court on Wednesday, January 23.
A preliminary hearing was also set for February 4, with a Plea and Case Management hearing due to take place on April 15 this year.
The two-year-old's body had been found in Champernowne, in Modbury, say police.
Scenes of Crime officers were at the address – in a quiet residential street – at 8am on Saturday morning following a report to officers.
Police quizzed 40-year-old Vane at Charles Cross Police Station over the weekend before charging her last night.
She was due to appear in the dock at Torquay Magistrates' Court this morning.
It is understood relatives of the child have been informed about his death and of Vane being charged.
Several police officers have remained at the scene and a cordon has been placed around the house.
Floral tributes and a small teddy bear have also been left outside.
One tribute read: "RIP Little Man. Once again a little one pays the price."
Investigators carried out door-to-door inquiries among residents in the area on Saturday.
Shaun's body was taken to Derriford Hospital and a post-mortem examination was carried out over the weekend.
Investigators are now appealing for anyone who may have seen a woman in the area in the hours leading up to the grim discovery.
The woman was seen walking between Modbury and Wrangaton between 2am and 8.15am on Saturday, investigators said.
She is described as having fair, shoulder-length hair and wearing a black jacket, black jeans and green Wellington boots.
Anyone with information is asked to contact the Police on 101, quoting log number 0218 of January 19.
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NEIGHBOURS IN SHOCK AFTER NEWS OF CHILD'S DEATH
NEIGHBOURS in the quiet residential street told The Herald of their shock as officers cordoned off a property.
Police descended on the sleepy cul-de-sac as residents watched from their windows in disbelief.
Some of those in the close-knit community spoke of their shock at the news of the death of a toddler in their neighbourhood.
Residents in the village said the youngster had recently begun attending a local pre-school.
One neighbour, who did not want to be named, said: "We saw the police there and people in white coats so we knew something was really wrong.
"It's such a small area, everyone knows everyone and we're all just in shock.
"You wouldn't expect it at all here, it's a community within a community and it's so quiet."
Peter Watts, chairman of the Modbury Parish Council, told The Herald: "Everyone is in shock, we don't know what has gone on. It's a big shock something like this could happen in Modbury, it's such a small community."
And a Modbury churchgoer added last night: "We have been saying our prayers for the family, that's all we can do."