The Old Bailey jury trying Sion Jenkins has been sent home until Monday when they will continue their deliberations.

Yesterday the six men and six women on the jury were given a majority instruction after failing to reach a unanimous verdict.

Jenkins, 48, now living in Lymington, Hants, is accused of murdering his 13-year-old foster daughter, Billie-Jo, on February 15, 1997.

The schoolgirl was struck at least ten times with an 18in tent peg as she painted patio doors at the family home in Lower Park Road, Hastings.

Jenkins, former deputy headteacher at all-boys William Parker School, Hastings, was jailed for life after being convicted of her murder at Lewes Crown Court in 1998.

However, the conviction was quashed at the second attempt by appeal court judges in 2004, prompting a retrial.

The retrial ended last summer with the jury failing to reach a verdict, triggering a second retrial which started on October 31.

Just after noon yesterday, judge Mr Justice David Clarke, told the jury he would accept a 10-2 majority verdict.

They were then sent home until Monday after failing to reach a verdict.