PC Harper's widow speaks of her 'life sentence' on anniversary of his death
The widow of PC Andrew Harper has revealed how she feels she has been left with a ‘life sentence’ on the anniversary of his death.
His family and fellow Thames Valley Police officers gathered yesterday for a memorial service and minute of silence ahead of the anniversary today.
The 28-year-old was dragged to his death one year ago today after he was caught in a crane strap as he tried to stop three thieves fleeing after they stole a quad bike in Stanford Dingley, Berkshire.
Lissie Harper told the Daily Mail how she was asleep in the early hours when she heard a knock on the door – and thought it was because she had locked her husband out.
But then an officer told her that PC Harper, her husband of four weeks, had died and that 10 people had been taken into custody.
‘I was very confused because, until then, I’d just assumed Andrew had been involved in a car accident on his way home,’ she said.
‘I said, “What do you mean? It’s not murder though is it?” And he said, “Yes, we think it was”.’
She also shared the last photo the couple took together just four days before his death’s at a friend’s wedding.
The childhood sweethearts had only been married for a month before his death.
‘In killing Andrew, a good, hardworking, honest, loving man, they have taken a life that was so precious and subjected me to a life sentence without him,’ she added.
Three teenagers, Henry Long, 19, and 18-year-olds Jessie Cole and Albert Bowers, were recently sentenced for manslaughter in relation to the death.
Long, of College Piece in Mortimer, was sentenced to 16 years in prison, while Cole, from Paices Hill, Aldermaston, Reading, and Bowers, of Windmill Corner, Mortimer Common, Reading, were each handed 13-year terms.
PC Harper’s family have criticised the sentences and the reductions given due to the defendants’ ages.
Mrs Harper recently launched a campaign, backed by the Police Federation of England and Wales, for full-life prison terms for those who kill emergency services workers.
Speaking to Good Morning Britain earlier this month, Deborah argued ‘Andrew’s Law’ would make sure sentences ‘define the crime’ of killing officers, although she accepted no punishment will help her family get over losing her son.
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