PC Andrew Harper death: Police given extra 24 hours to hold 10 suspects on suspicion of murder

Sunita Patel-Carstairs, news reporter

Police investigating the killing of PC Andrew Harper in Berkshire have been granted an extra 24 hours to question the 10 suspects in custody.

The 28-year-old newlywed was responding to a reported burglary late last Thursday night and died after being dragged along by a vehicle near the village of Sulhamstead.

It happened near the crossroads of Ufton Lane and Lambdens Hill, off the A4 between Reading and Newbury.

A 13-year-old boy was among the teenagers and men arrested on suspicion of murder within an hour at a council-run caravan and mobile home site nearby.

Thames Valley Police applied for an extension to their custody, and this was granted at Reading Magistrates' Court on Monday. Detectives had already been given an additional 36 hours at the weekend, which expired overnight.

The suspects are:

Earlier, several of PC Harper's colleagues, serving in the Roads Policing Proactive Unit based at Abingdon, visited the area where he was killed to pay their respects.

They looked at the flowers and cards still being laid by friends, family and members of the public four days on.

Their heads bowed, some held and comforted each other, visibly in tears.

One message read: "Harps, I am truly gutted. A great cop, a great man, a great friend.

"There will always be a part of my heart missing now. RIP mate, love you."

A post-mortem found PC Harper died of multiple injuries after being dragged along by a vehicle. Police said he was at the scene with another officer and was out of his car.

The officer, described as "well-known across the force", had married his wife Lissie at Ardington House in Oxfordshire just four weeks before his death. He was due to go on honeymoon this week.

His father said the family were "absolutely devastated" and in a "bad place", while Thames Valley Police Federation said it would ensure PC Harper's "heroism is never forgotten".

A fundraising page set up to support PC Harper's family has surged past £150,000.

A separate appeal set up by PC Harper in aid of children suffering with cancer has also been flooded with donations.

He had planned to take part in the 20-mile, 200-obstacle Dirty Weekend race in Peterborough in May next year, despite admitting "I have never been much of a runner".

His target was to raise £500, saying: "Even if only one child benefits then it will be well and truly worth it."

But a deluge of donations has now taken the total amount raised to more than £19,000 in aid of Children with Cancer UK.