Berkshire

Andrew Harper death: Murder accused appears in court

Andrew Harper
Image caption PC Andrew Harper was married four weeks ago

A man has appeared in court charged with murdering a police officer who was killed while investigating a burglary.

Jed Foster, 20, appeared at Reading Magistrates' Court charged with the murder of 28-year-old PC Andrew Harper, and the theft of a quad bike.

PC Harper, of Thames Valley Police, died on Thursday after being dragged along the road by a vehicle in Sulhamstead, Berkshire.

Mr Foster has been remanded to appear at Reading Crown Court on Wednesday.

Robert Jacques, defending, said Mr Foster, of Pingewood in Burghfield near Reading, denied any involvement in PC Harper's death.

PC Harper's wife Lissie, whom he married four weeks ago, paid tribute to her husband as the "kindest, loveliest, most selfless person you will ever meet".

Image caption Jed Foster appeared in front of Reading magistrates earlier

In a statement, Mrs Harper said her "heart is broken" after the death of her "darling boy".

She added: "We had so many plans for the future, you wanted to do it all.

"My darling boy I do not know how I will be able to survive without you.

'Amazing life'

"I want to be angry that your job took you away from us but I know you loved it and always wanted to keep everyone safe, especially me.

"My heart is broken without you my sweetheart but my god I feel so lucky that it was me you chose to share your amazing life with.

"Although we were married for only 28 days before you were cruelly taken away from me, my husband you were perfect."

Image caption PC Harper and his wife Lissie on their wedding day

PC Harper, who got married four weeks ago, was killed on the A4 Bath Road.

The roads policing officer, who became a regular officer in 2011 after joining as a special constable a year earlier, had attended a reported break-in with a fellow officer in Sulhamstead at about 23:30 BST on Thursday.

A post-mortem examination concluded that he died of multiple injuries.

The officer on duty with PC Harper was not physically injured but is being given emotional support, Thames Valley Police said.

Nine other boys and men who were arrested, aged between 13 and 30, have been released on bail until 13 September.

Image copyright Julia Quenzler
Image caption Mr Foster was remanded in custody to appear at Reading Crown Court on Wednesday

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