PC Andrew Harper’s killers could have manslaughter jail terms INCREASED as Attorney General refers case to Court of Appeal – saying ‘such heinous crimes should be punished with the greatest severity’
- Albert Bowers and Jessie Cole, both 18, have received 13-year jail sentences
- They have already lodged applications to challenge manslaughter convictions
- Duo were jailed on July 31 alongside Henry Long, 19, who got 16 years in prison
- They killed officer when their getaway car dragged him to his death last August
- PC Harper’s mother Debbie Adlam says ‘whole nation stands with us in outrage’
The Attorney General today referred the sentences of PC Andrew Harper’s three killers to the Court of Appeal amid concerns they were too low.
Albert Bowers and Jessie Cole, both 18, have already lodged applications with the same court to challenge their manslaughter convictions and 13-year jail sentences.
They were jailed on July 31 alongside Henry Long, 19, who received 16 years in prison, for killing the Thames Valley Police officer when their getaway car dragged him to his death after his ankle became caught in its trailing tow rope in Berkshire.
But a jury at the Old Bailey cleared the trio of murder. Speaking today, Attorney General Suella Braverman said: ‘This was a horrific crime which resulted in the death of a much-respected police officer while he was on-duty, protecting his community.
PC Andrew Harper was dragged to his death after he was caught in a crane strap as he tried to stop three thieves fleeing after they stole a quad bike in Berkshire last year
Henry Long (left), the driver of the car who had previously admitted manslaughter, was jailed for 16 years and Jessie Cole (centre) and Albert Bowers (right) were given 13 years each
‘Having personally considered the details of this shocking case, I have decided to refer the sentences of PC Andrew Harper’s killers to the Court of Appeal.
‘Attacks made against emergency workers will not be tolerated and offenders should be punished with the greatest severity for such heinous crimes.’
Following today’s news, PC Harper’s mother Debbie Adlam said: ‘I’m pleased to see that the Attorney General Suella Braverman has taken the important step of referring the sentences to the Court of Appeal under the Unduly Lenient Sentence scheme.
‘My family and I know that the whole nation stands with us in outrage at the sentences handed down to my son’s killers.
‘We can only hope that a fairer outcome is reached by the Court of Appeal to deliver the justice that Andrew deserves.
Lissie Harper, the widow of PC Andrew Harper, pictured outside London’s Old Bailey on July 24
‘As a family we will not stop campaigning until our blue light heroes are safer as they step out each and every day to protect us as a society.’
It comes as the officer’s widow, Lissie, 29, launched the Harper’s Law campaign for automatic life sentences for those convicted of killing emergency service workers.
She has requested a meeting with Home Secretary Priti Patel and has been backed by the Police Federation of England and Wales, which represents 120,000 officers.
Long, Bowers and Cole killed PC Harper by dragging him for more than a mile over winding country lanes at high speeds on August 15 last year.
Attorney General Suella Braverman (above) has referred the sentences to the Court of Appeal
The traffic constable had been trying to stop the trio, from a travelling community in Reading, getting away with a stolen £10,000 quad bike.
The teenagers whooped and cheered over the videolink from Belmarsh Prison as they were cleared of murder but found guilty of manslaughter last month.
Long, the driver of the car who had previously admitted manslaughter, was jailed for 16 years and Cole and Bowers were given 13 years each.
PC Harper’s widow and his family have argued their sentences were far too lenient. No date has been set for the court hearing of the appeals by Bowers and Cole.
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