Investigation continues after murder of police officer

Ten people are still being questioned after a newlywed policeman was dragged along by a vehicle before he died.

PC Andrew Harper (28) from the Roads Policing Proactive Unit based at Abingdon police station, was killed as he responded to a “serious incident” near the A4 Bath Road at the village of Sulhamstead in West Berkshire at about 11.30pm on Thursday.

Officers have been on Padworth Road, with two vans appearing to block the entrance.  On Friday evening there was a police presence at a caravan site near Burghfield Common, not far from where the incident took place.  Two white tents have been erected and forensics investigators have been gathering items and taking photographs.

Chief Constable John Campbell said PC Harper was at the scene with a fellow officer and was out of his police car when the incident occurred.

His cause of death has not yet been confirmed, but police say they are working “hard and diligently to find out what happened”.  A post-mortem examination is taking place to establish the cause of death.

“You realise this is the second morning Andrew’s family will wake up without him. It’s a personal tragedy for them first and foremost and will leave a lasting impression on the force and the surrounding community.”

Deputy Police and Crime Commissioner for Thames Valley, Matthew Barber

Deputy Police and Crime Commissioner for Thames Valley, Matthew Barber, said: “Many people will have only heard the news yesterday and it does hit hard the morning after.  You realise this is the second morning Andrew’s family will wake up without him. It’s a personal tragedy for them first and foremost and will leave a lasting impression on the force and the surrounding community.”

PC Harper was married last month in a ceremony at Ardington House in Oxfordshire and was due to go on his honeymoon next week.  His mother Deborah Adlam had shared a picture with her son on Facebook – telling friends she was “so proud” of him.  Other relatives have said that the couple had a “dream wedding”.

The 10 people, boys and men aged between 13 and 30, have been arrested on suspicion of murder.  They were all arrested within an hour of the incident happening, and are currently being held in custody in different police stations around the region.

Stephen West

Stephen is a Broadcast Journalist with previous experience working on print and online publications and on local TV. He is interested in politics and economics.

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