PC Harper’s killers giggled and snoozed while details of his horrific death were shown to the court


THE heartless teen thugs found guilty of killing PC Andrew Harper LAUGHED as his horrific injuries were read out to jurors.

Henry Long, 19, Albert Bowers and Jessie Cole, both 18, caused outrage with their shameless behaviour before being convicted at the Old Bailey today.

The illiterate trio disgusted jurors as they smirked and laughed while the court heard how PC Harper was swung “like a pendulum” to a gruesome and agonising death on a winding country road near Reading, Berks.

Full of bravado they even smiled as the court heard how a witness mistook the officer’s body for a “deer carcass” being pulled behind the getaway car.

One of the defendants, Bowers, was so bored he fell asleep as the prosecutor showed jurors video footage of the Thames Valley Police officer being dragged to his death.

Both he and Cole needed the help of an intermediary to keep up with the proceedings and struggled to pay attention for more than 40 minutes at a time.

At an earlier magistrates hearing they clowned around in front of photographers as they arrived at court.

The defendants appeared unable to grasp the gravity of the case and remained oblivious to PC Harper’s tearful widow Lissie, who attended court for every day of the trial.

In spite of their callous conduct, Lissie, 29, married just four weeks before her husband died, remained dignified as she sat with his parents Phil Harper and Debbie Adlam, and brother Sean.

The officer’s family heard how he was lassoed by the loop of a rope trailing from the gang’s SEAT Toledo as they escaped with a £10,000 Honda quad bike from a burglary at remote Bradfield Southend, near Reading, Berks.

The court was told how the cop was dragged for more than a mile along a country lane at speeds of up to 60mph while driver Long swerved violently.

Within hours of PC Harper’s death the young driver and his two passengers were arrested at a nearby traveller camp, the jury were told.

Long, of Mortimer, Reading, was cleared of the hero cop’s murder but had previously admitted his manslaughter.

Bowers, also of Mortimer, and Cole, of Bramley, Hants, were also cleared of murder but found guilty of manslaughter.

Some jurors were visibly distressed by details of the case and the panel was offered counselling before the trial started.

But one young female juror was dismissed on the eve of the panel being sent out to deliberate their verdicts after being seen to smile at the defendants last Friday.

A prison guard sitting in the dock with the defendants reported her to the judge after she was seen to mouth “Bye, bye, boys,” as the trio left court at the end of the day’s hearing.

A first trial was abandoned midway in March over coronavirus and a retrial started last month.

The appalling behaviour of the defendants continued throughout both trials.

They were in the dock for only half of the retrial, spending the other half nonchalantly watching proceedings in a video suite at Belmarsh Prison.

A group of around 25 supporters were present at court as the verdicts were given.

However, the defendants themselves were unable to attend because no prison vans were available.


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