PC Andrew Harper's widow asks PM for retrial after husband's killers cleared of murder

Russell Hope, news reporter
·2-min read

PC Andrew Harper's widow has written to the prime minister to ask for a retrial after his killers were cleared of murder.

Lissie Harper had been married to PC Harper for just a month when he was killed trying to prevent the theft of a quad bike in Berkshire last August.

Henry Long, 19, Jessie Cole and Albert Bowers, both 18, were acquitted of murder by an Old Bailey jury on Friday.

Cole and Bowers were found guilty of manslaughter, while Long had previously admitted the same charge.

Mrs Harper said she was "immensely disappointed" at the verdicts when she spoke outside court.

PC Harper, 28, was dragged for more than a mile along the country lanes of Berkshire when he became entangled in a tow rope attached to the teenagers' getaway car.

In an open letter posted to Facebook, Lissie Harper urged Boris Johnson to "have this miscarriage of justice overturned".

She claimed there was "suspected interference" with the jury during the trial.

One juror, she wrote, "was dismissed well into the trial due to being over-friendly with the defendants as well as their families" and made "inappropriate comments to the defendants" witnessed by members of the prison service.

Detectives, she claimed, had information that "the family of the defendants were making plans to intimidate" jurors and therefore gave them "special protection".

"This alone in our eyes should be enough grounds for a retrial," Mrs Harper wrote.

Her husband, she said, was "brutally killed in the most savage and cruel way" by "immoral, barbaric and shameless" men.

While admitting she is biased, Ms Harper insisted: "We can all see as plain as day that it clearly has not been a fair trial whatsoever".

She called on Mr Johnson to act to ensure "the justice system in our country is the solid ethical foundation that it rightly should be. Not the joke that so many of us now view it to be."