Nikki Allan – Man charged over murder of schoolgirl, seven, found dead in derelict building

A MAN has been charged with the murder of a schoolgirl whose body was discovered in a derelict building almost 30 years ago.

Nikki Allan was found dead near her family home on October 8, 1992.

The seven-year-old had been at her grandparents' flat in the same block that she lived, in Wear Garth, east end of Sunderland.

But, while making the short journey home, she went missing and a frantic search was launched.

The following morning she was found inside the then-derelict Old Exchange Building after her coat and shoes were spotted.

She had been stabbed 37 times in her chest during a frenzied attack.


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David Thomas Boyd, 54, of Norton, County Durham, appeared before South Tyneside Magistrates' Court on Monday charged with Nikki's murder.

He was remanded in custody and will next appear at Newcastle Crown Court on Tuesday.

Northumbria Police Assistant Chief Constable David Felton said: "This is an extremely tragic case and our thoughts very much continue to be with the family and friends of Nikki Allan.

"A significant investigation has been ongoing ever since Nikki's death 30 years ago.

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"As with any unsolved cases of this nature, they are never closed. Our dedicated teams constantly review the evidence and follow any new investigative leads that may come to light.

"I would like to offer my sincere thanks to Nikki's family for their patience and co-operation and we will continue to offer them any support they may need."

The charge follows the emergence of DNA evidence in October 2017 on the 25th anniversary of Nikki's evil murder.

New grisly forensic evidence from Northumbria Police included fresh male DNA which cops hoped could provide a breakthrough in the murder mystery.

At the time, Northumbria Police urged men to come forward and give samples of their DNA so they could be eliminated from the investigation.

Two people were arrested for her murder but neither were convicted.

She’s my daughter. I’m never going to give up on her

In 1993, George Heron, then 24, stood trial for the seven-year-old’s murder but he was later cleared by a jury at Leeds Crown Court.

While in 2014, Sunderland serial killer Steven Grieveson was arrested and quizzed on suspicion of Nikki’s murder.

He was later told he would face no further action.

Northumbria Police officers have for years continually reviewed the evidence but advancements in forensic science have led to investigative leads not available at the time.

Speaking following the emergence of fresh evidence Nikki’s mum, Sharon Henderson, branded the DNA breakthrough the biggest yet but insisted she would not get her hopes up.

Ms Henderson said: “I really hope this will help the police make some progress. DNA is the biggest hope we can have. This is the biggest breakthrough there has been in a long time.

“But I have been let down that many times I’m not getting my hopes up. I did feel confident when I met the detectives, though.”

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She added: “She’s my daughter. I’m never going to give up on her.”

Anyone with information relating to Nikki’s death can speak to Northumbria Police on 101 ext 69191 or 0800 555111.

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