Man, 21, pleads not guilty to murdering police support officer

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Julia James was killed while out walking her dog (Kent Police/PA) (PA Media)
Julia James was killed while out walking her dog (Kent Police/PA) (PA Media)

A 21-year-old man has pleaded not guilty to murdering a PCSO who was killed while out walking her dog.

Julia James 53, was found dead with serious head injuries in Akholt Wood, close to her home in Snowdown, Kent in April with her Jack Russell dog Toby by her side.

The death of the police support officer led to an outpouring of grief in the community she dutifully served for many years.

Appearing at Maidstone Crown Court Callum Wheeler, from Aylesham, denied murdering Ms James.

Ms James’ death sparked a huge murder investigation, with dozens of police officers from all over the country drafted in to painstakingly comb fields and woodland.

Her family praised her as “fiercely loyal” and someone who “loved with her whole heart”.

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