An Auckland man has denied murdering a baby during New Zealand's coronavirus lockdown.
The 21-year-old appeared in the High Court today after Counties Manukau police charged him with murder last month.
Detective Inspector Shaun Vickers has earlier said the 3-month-old child died on April 13 at Middlemore Hospital after allegedly being assaulted at a Papatoetoe house.
The accused killer's lawyer, Marie Dyhrberg QC, entered a not guilty plea today on her client's behalf today.
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Justice Sally Fitzgerald remanded the man in custody and extended his interim name suppression until a hearing on the issue next month.
A trial was also scheduled for next July.
Vickers has said police are unable to comment further on the baby's death or the investigation, dubbed Operation Searcy, while the case is before the court.
Concerns were raised about an increase in family violence during the Covid-19 lockdown, with early police statistics showing a rise.