FOLLOW our live blog of the Nikitta Grender trial with our reporters sending updates from court.

Pregnant teenager Nikitta Grender was found dead at her Lliswerry home after a fire in February last year.

Carl Whant, 27, of no fixed address, stands accused of the rape and murder of Miss Grender on February 5 last year. He is also accused of arson and child destruction. He denies all the charges.

#nikitta trial finished for today to restart tomorrow at 10am Thu Jan 26 16:05:45 2012

Banks: it's possible it originated in the blood staining and was redistributed when the shirt was washed #nikitta Thu Jan 26 16:05:21 2012

Banks: other DNA matching #nikitta was found elsewhere on the shirt. It was not blood but unable to say where it came from. Thu Jan 26 16:03:48 2012

Banks: dilute blood staining was found on left sleeve hem, centre back and inside of the collar. All 3 matched #nikitta's DNA profile Thu Jan 26 15:48:13 2012

The shirt has been placed on a mannequin in front of the jury to see. It is blue and white striped with a white t-shirt sewn in #nikitta Thu Jan 26 15:46:47 2012

stickers indicating where blood was found and cut out of the shirt are being shown to jury #nikitta Thu Jan 26 15:44:11 2012

Jury members being shown Whant's shirt #nikitta Thu Jan 26 15:41:30 2012

Banks: examined Whant's boxer shorts and found no DNA matching #nikitta Thu Jan 26 15:38:17 2012

Banks: nail samples taken from Whant and examined found no blood #nikitta Thu Jan 26 15:35:32 2012

Banks: a 18cm-long black-handled knife with fire damage, which was found in the hall of #nikitta's flat was also tested. No blood was found Thu Jan 26 15:30:19 2012

Banks: there were around 19 small stains found in total, only one stain was tested for DNA #nikitta Thu Jan 26 15:27:25 2012

Banks: a small blood stain with DNA matching #nikitta's was found on a white towel taken from her bathroom Thu Jan 26 15:24:20 2012

Banks: DNA profiles found on them matched Whant, Ryan Mayes, #nikitta, another man and two unknown women Thu Jan 26 15:21:47 2012

Banks: examined items taken from #nikitta's flat including cigarette butts Thu Jan 26 15:17:57 2012

Banks: None were a match and the result is still unknown #nikitta Thu Jan 26 15:14:29 2012

Banks: found one unknown DNA profile on her nails #nikitta. Checked these against 14 other DNA profiles taken from her friends and family Thu Jan 26 15:13:32 2012

Banks: analysis of #nikitta's finger nails found no evidence of DNA matches with Whant or Ryan Mayes Thu Jan 26 15:09:38 2012

Banks: the probability that DNA matching Whant's had instead come from someone else is one in a billion #nikitta Thu Jan 26 15:06:15 2012

Banks: traces of blood were also found in swabs taken from #nikitta's body Thu Jan 26 15:02:58 2012

Banks: after extracting DNA we will run tests twice to confirm what is found #nikitta Thu Jan 26 15:02:20 2012

Banks: also received DNA profiles of other people she was asked to eliminate #nikitta Thu Jan 26 14:59:20 2012

Banks: more than likely the source of Ryan Mayes' DNA came from traces of semen #nikitta Thu Jan 26 14:58:02 2012

Banks: minor DNA profiles were also found matching #nikitta or Ryan Mayes Thu Jan 26 14:57:15 2012

Banks: major DNA profile matching Whant, which in her opinion, originated from semen was found #nikitta Thu Jan 26 14:55:56 2012

Banks: swabs taken from #nikitta found semen and three DNA profiles Thu Jan 26 14:54:32 2012

Banks: only DNA from #nikitta was detected on these samples Thu Jan 26 14:53:10 2012

Banks: examined a number of burnt fabrics, some of it was blood stained #nikitta Thu Jan 26 14:52:26 2012

Banks: examined DNA samples from #nikitta, her boyfriend Ryan Mayes and Whant Thu Jan 26 14:51:35 2012

Banks: some samples we might come across may contain DNA profiles from more than one person #nikitta Thu Jan 26 14:48:11 2012

Banks: DNA can be transferred in a variety of ways - through bodily fluids like blood, saliva, semen, and sometimes through touch #nikitta Thu Jan 26 14:42:18 2012

Banks: DNA is genetic material within the body. You inherit half from mother and half from father #nikitta Thu Jan 26 14:37:29 2012

Banks: blood staining occurs when a person's blood is transferred to another surface #nikitta Thu Jan 26 14:35:35 2012

Banks: received Whant's Ford Focus car and swabs taken from it, as well as his black jacket #nikitta Thu Jan 26 14:33:14 2012

Banks: also received Whant's light blue shirt #nikitta Thu Jan 26 14:31:34 2012

Banks: received blood samples, textiles and swabs taken from #nikitta for examination. The samples were collected by pathologist Thu Jan 26 14:30:49 2012

Banks: a scientist working on behalf of Whant's defence team took copies of the records kept at the lab #nikitta Thu Jan 26 14:27:51 2012

Banks: all items received by her lab in relation to the case were properly packaged and correctly stored while being examined #nikitta Thu Jan 26 14:25:57 2012

Melanie Banks now giving evidence. She works at LGC Forensics in Tamworth #nikitta Thu Jan 26 14:21:37 2012

Jury hear it is an agreed fact that between Jan 28 and the PM of Feb 4 there was no sexual activity of any kind between #nikitta and Whant Thu Jan 26 14:20:49 2012

End of Mr Sillars evidence. Next up is forensic scientist Melanie Banks #nikitta Thu Jan 26 14:18:22 2012

Sillars: did wipe tests on the outside of the jacket after spotting stains on the shoulder, pocket and back. No blood found #nikitta Thu Jan 26 14:17:34 2012

Sillars: pulled the jacket inside out and examined it with a desk magnifier. Did not "wipe test" it to look for blood #nikitta Thu Jan 26 14:15:59 2012

Def junior counsel Jeff Jones is cross examining the witness #nikitta Thu Jan 26 14:13:41 2012

Sillars: did not notice anything worthy of inspection on first examination #nikitta Thu Jan 26 14:13:05 2012

Sillars: looked at the inside of jacket with magnifier but did not test the inside for blood #nikitta Thu Jan 26 14:12:13 2012

Sillars: examined outside of Whant's jacket which revealed no blood staining #nikitta Thu Jan 26 14:11:15 2012

He examined some of Whant's clothes #nikitta Thu Jan 26 14:09:51 2012

Next witness is forensic scientist David Sillars #nikitta Thu Jan 26 14:08:05 2012

#nikitta trial has started again Thu Jan 26 14:03:16 2012

End of DC Parker's evidence. Case adjourned until 2pm #nikitta Thu Jan 26 12:46:06 2012

Parker: packaged all exhibits taken from the flat and sealed them. They were then logged on police system an stored away #nikitta Thu Jan 26 12:44:56 2012

Parker: took swabs from the neck and top of the vodka bottle #nikitta Thu Jan 26 12:42:28 2012

Parker: Do not recall seeing any blood on the towel #nikitta Thu Jan 26 12:41:47 2012

Parker: also took photos of and recovered a dry towel found on a radiator in the bathroom #nikitta Thu Jan 26 12:41:09 2012

Parker: photographed a bottle of vodka and an ashtray containing cigarette butts on the kitchen table #nikitta Thu Jan 26 12:40:26 2012

Parker: took wet and dry swabs from the front door handle of the flat #nikitta Thu Jan 26 12:38:50 2012

Parker: took fibre samples from the doors in the flat #nikitta Thu Jan 26 12:38:02 2012

Parker: also took a video recording of the flat #nikitta Thu Jan 26 12:37:19 2012

Parker: was taking general photos but would take a close up picture of anything he thought was significant #nikitta Thu Jan 26 12:36:30 2012

Jury hears DC Parker was one of the first officers to enter #nikitta's flat. Thu Jan 26 12:35:04 2012

He is now being cross examined by junior def counsel Jeff Jones #nikitta Thu Jan 26 12:33:48 2012

Prosecution takes jury through a number of photos taken by DC Parker #nikitta Thu Jan 26 12:32:55 2012

He attended #nikitta's flat in Broadmead Park on Feb 5 to take photos, examine the scene and recover fibres Thu Jan 26 12:29:11 2012

Next witness is Detective Constable Colin Parker who is a crime scene investigator #nikitta Thu Jan 26 12:28:11 2012

End of DC Hodgetts evidence #nikitta Thu Jan 26 12:26:44 2012

Hodgetts: I gave it the examination I thought it required to cover all angles #nikitta Thu Jan 26 12:14:21 2012

Hodgetts: examination of the car took several hours #nikitta Thu Jan 26 12:13:19 2012

Hodgetts: once examination complete, I made some notes and locked the car and the building #nikitta Thu Jan 26 12:02:13 2012

Hodgetts: took wet and dry swabs to allow the recovery of dried blood #nikitta Thu Jan 26 12:00:31 2012

Hodgetts: took photos of where the blood samples were taken from #nikitta Thu Jan 26 11:50:18 2012

Hodgetts now being cross examined by def counsel Christopher Kinch QC #nikitta Thu Jan 26 11:48:48 2012

Hodgetts: recovered the car mat which was packaged and sealed in an evidence bag and stored at Newport central police station #nikitta Thu Jan 26 11:44:24 2012

Hodgetts: first examination was only to detect traces of blood #nikitta Thu Jan 26 11:39:13 2012

Hodgetts: returned following morning on Feb 9 for a full forensic examination on the car #nikitta Thu Jan 26 11:38:19 2012

Hodgetts: samples were then taken to be frozen at a secure store room at Newport central police station #nikitta Thu Jan 26 11:36:11 2012

Hodgetts: took swabs of blood found on rubber flooring underneath car mat in the driver's foot well of the car #nikitta Thu Jan 26 11:35:13 2012

Hodgetts: two forensic scientists also came to help. They were looking for any traces of blood in the car #nikitta Thu Jan 26 11:32:19 2012

Hodgett: wore a white protective suit and two pairs of gloves whilst examining the car #nikitta Thu Jan 26 11:31:10 2012

Hodgetts: hadn't had anything to do with the case the vehicle was involved in prior to car examination #nikitta Thu Jan 26 11:30:32 2012

Hodgetts: took a number of photos of the car #nikitta Thu Jan 26 11:27:55 2012

He is a crime scene investigator and went to exam Whant's car at the Walls recovery yard #nikitta Thu Jan 26 11:27:08 2012

Next witness is Detective Constable Anthony James Hodgetts #nikitta Thu Jan 26 11:24:34 2012

Mr Phillips evidence has finished #nikitta Thu Jan 26 11:24:12 2012

Phillips: positive that officer at Whant's house was wearing blue gloves. #nikitta Thu Jan 26 11:23:58 2012

Phillips: did not lock Whant's car after putting it in the scenes of crime shed. Locked the shed doors #nikitta Thu Jan 26 11:22:46 2012

Phillips: did not sign to say I had received the key from police officer at Whant's house #nikitta Thu Jan 26 11:20:45 2012

Mr Phillips now being cross examined by def junior counsel Jeff Jones #nikitta Thu Jan 26 11:18:38 2012

Phillips: locked car door and locked car in shed. Gave car keys to yard controller to be locked away #nikitta Thu Jan 26 11:18:00 2012

Phillips: at the depot I drove the car into the scenes of crime shed. Still had gloves on. Noone else went into it #nikitta Thu Jan 26 11:15:05 2012

Phillips: officer moved Whant's car into the road before giving me the key. Then took car back to depot #nikitta Thu Jan 26 11:14:02 2012

Phillips: Wore two pairs of latex gloves. It's a matter of course when doing police jobs #nikitta Thu Jan 26 11:12:46 2012

Phillips: was asked to go to a Whant's address on Feb 7 to recover a car which was part of a murder investigation #nikitta Thu Jan 26 11:11:57 2012

Phillips: entry is only through a secure electronic gate which can only be opened by contacting the security guard on duty #nikitta Thu Jan 26 11:10:01 2012

Phillips: the yard is surrounded by wire fencing, CCTV and a secure scenes of crime shed #nikitta Thu Jan 26 11:08:58 2012

Phillips: on Feb 5 was working for Walls recovery firm, which held contract with police service #nikitta Thu Jan 26 11:07:42 2012

Next to give evidence is Richard Phillips who drove the lorry used to recover Whant's car #nikitta Thu Jan 26 11:06:00 2012

End of DC James' evidence #nikitta Thu Jan 26 11:05:32 2012

James: I did not enter Whant's car before the recovery lorry came. Wore no protective clothing when moving the car later #nikitta Thu Jan 26 11:04:53 2012

James: did not examine the jacket at the address, only asked him to put it in the bag #nikitta Thu Jan 26 11:02:17 2012

James: exhibit bags containing Whant's clothes were folded but not sealed at the scene as I didn't have any tape #nikitta Thu Jan 26 11:00:49 2012

Defence junior counsel Jeff Jones is now cross examining DC James #nikitta Thu Jan 26 10:58:47 2012

James: Whant's jacket and trousers in exhibit bags were taken to Ystrad Mynach police station where they were sealed #nikitta Thu Jan 26 10:56:11 2012

James: the car recovery company is well briefed on how cars which are to be forensically examined should be treated #nikitta Thu Jan 26 10:54:51 2012

James: to do so I had to touch steering wheel, gear stick, hand brake and brake. Did so with bare hands #nikitta Thu Jan 26 10:54:03 2012

James: I had to move Whant's car from its car parking space between other cars into the road for it to be loaded on to lorry #nikitta Thu Jan 26 10:52:46 2012

James: told the driver Richard Phillips the car was to be taken to his company's secure yard to be forensically examined later #nikitta Thu Jan 26 10:51:05 2012

James: car was recovered around 2am using a flat bed lorry #nikitta Thu Jan 26 10:49:06 2012

James: before I attended Whant's address I had no previous involvement in the investigation and had not been to #nikitta's home Thu Jan 26 10:48:10 2012

James: took the car key and arrangements were made for Whant's car to recovered for examination by police #nikitta Thu Jan 26 10:46:08 2012

Jury shown pictures of Whant's jacket #nikitta Thu Jan 26 10:44:26 2012

James: Whant placed the items in brown evidence bags. I did not touch them #nikitta Thu Jan 26 10:43:22 2012

He visited Whant on Feb 7 at 1.10am and took a black jacket, black trousers and the key to his Ford Focus car #nikitta Thu Jan 26 10:41:29 2012

First live witness today is Detective Constable Brian James #nikitta Thu Jan 26 10:39:37 2012

Statement ended, end of Mrs Mole's evidence #nikitta Thu Jan 26 10:39:24 2012

Mole: I looked at my watch when i heard the knock but my eyesight is not good so cannot be sure of the time #nikitta Thu Jan 26 10:38:45 2012

Mole: he appeared fit, well and sober #nikitta Thu Jan 26 10:37:48 2012

Mole: it was my grandson Carl Whant. He asked for cigarettes. He took about 6 and left #nikitta Thu Jan 26 10:37:19 2012

Mole: was in bed on Feb 5 when I heard knock in front door around 7.45am and 8.15am #nikitta Thu Jan 26 10:36:15 2012

#nikitta trial resumes. Prosecution are to read the witness statement of Sandra Mole, who is Whant's grandmother Thu Jan 26 10:35:36 2012

Back at Newport Crown Court this morning for the #nikitta Grender murder trial. Follow me for live coverage from 10.15am Thu Jan 26 09:43:26 2012