PC Andrew Harper died in 'truly shocking circumstances', court told

Three teenagers deny murder

Tuesday, March 10, 2020

Police officer Andrew Harper was dragged behind a car for more than a mile along a road and killed in “truly shocking circumstances”, a court has heard.

The 28-year-old constable died from multiple injuries while responding to a reported theft in Berkshire last August.

Further details of how he was killed are now coming to light as the case is heard at the Old Bailey.

Prosecutor Brian Altman QC told the court today that the alleged murder of the Thames Valley officer was “a completely senseless killing”.

The jury was told that one witness said he mistakenly thought he had seen a bloodied deer attached to the car before realising it was a man being dragged along.

Mr Altman told jurors: “Late at night, on Thursday August 15 of last year, in Berkshire, 28-year-old Andrew Harper, a serving police constable of Thames Valley Police, was killed in truly shocking circumstances.

“With his ankles caught in a strap that was trailing behind a car being driven at speed along a country lane, he was dragged for over a mile along the road surface, swung from side to side like a pendulum in an effort to dislodge him, losing items of his police uniform along the way, with the rest of his uniform being quite literally ripped and stripped from his body.

Henry Long, 18, has admitted manslaughter but denies murder

“When, at last, he became disentangled, he was left with the most awful injuries, from which he died there on the road, surrounded by colleagues who tried in vain to save him.”

Mr Harper, left wearing only his socks and boots, suffered injuries that were unsurvivable, the court heard.

Henry Long, 18, from Mortimer, Reading, and two 17-year-olds, who cannot be named for legal reasons, all deny murdering PC Harper.

Long has admitted manslaughter, which the younger boys deny, and all three have pleaded guilty to conspiracy to steal a quad bike.

The trial continues.

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