PC Andrew Harper's Widow Calls For Retrial After Killers Cleared Of Murder
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PC Andrew Harper's widow, Lissie Harper, has written a letter to the Prime Minister asking for a retrial after her husband's killers were cleared of murder last week.
PC Harper, who was just 28 at the time of his death, was killed by Henry Long, 19, Jessie Cole, 18 and Albert Bowers, also 18, when they tried to steal a £10,000 quad bike in Berkshire last August.
He was tragically dragged for over a mile through country lanes, after becoming tangled in a rope attached to the vehicle the teenagers were using for their getaway.
Last week, Long, Cole and Bowers were cleared of murder and instead convicted of manslaughter.
Now, Lissie Harper has written a letter to Boris Johnson, urging him to help her "claim justice for an innocent man robbed of his life".
In the letter, posted on her Facebook page, she wrote: "Dear Boris Johnson, Priti Patel, David Blunkett and any other person in which has the power, moral value and sheer strength of character to right such a despicable wrong for our Country... I am sure you are acutely aware of the details of the recent trial for the conviction of my late husband PC Andrew Harper's killers.
"... So I implore you to hear my words, see the facts that are laid out before us, and I ask with no expectations other than hope that you might help me to make these changes be considered, to ensure that Andrew is given the retrial that he unquestionably deserves."
She added: "Not only was my husband brutally killed in the most savage and cruel way but he was also an on duty devoted police officer coming to the aid of an innocent member of the public whilst the defendants attempted to commit crimes as they admit without guilt that they do as a lifestyle."
In the letter, Lissie - who had been married to Andrew for just a month when he was killed - refers to a number of events in the trial, which was originally abandoned back in March due to Covid-19. In the retrial, Mr Justice Edis ordered extra security measures to be put in place to protect the jury from intimidation.
It was also revealed that one juror was discharged after she was seeing mouthing "bye boys" to the teenagers in the dock.
The defendants argued they were unaware that PC Harper - who was more than 6ft tall and weighed 14 stone - was attached to the vehicle, but the prosecution argued against that, with the trial hearing how Andrew was "swung side-to-side like a pendulum in an effort to dislodge him".
Following the incidents, former home secretary Lord Blunkett told The Daily Telegraph: "It throws considerable doubt on whether the whole of the jury should have been stood down and a retrial required.
"The verdict also raises issues... in respect of the definition of murder because although it might not be premeditated, it was murder."
Reports indicate the defendants had been seen smirking and laughing during the trial and hugged after the verdicts were delivered.
"I will keep fighting on behalf of Andrew, the future that was stolen from us and also the victims who find themselves in this unjustly situation in the future," added Lissie.
The three teenagers face sentencing on Friday.