Police back campaign by PC Andrew Harper’s widow for killers to get life in jail 


Police chiefs back campaign by PC Andrew Harper’s widow for killers of emergency service workers to get life in jail

  • Hero PC was killed by a gang when he tried to stop them stealing a quad bike
  • The backing of police chiefs is major step forward in campaign for Harper’s Law
  • National Police Chiefs’ Council is the latest police organisation to support campaign

Police bosses last night lent their support to a campaign led by the widow of hero PC Andrew Harper for killers of emergency service workers to get life sentences. 

National Police Chiefs’ Council chairman Martin Hewitt met with Lissie Harper to discuss the drafting of a law to protect the emergency services. 

The backing of police chiefs is a major step forward in her campaign for Harper’s Law, in memory of her husband who was killed by a gang of teenagers when he tried to stop them stealing a quad bike in Berkshire last year. 

Police bosses are lending their support to a campaign led by the widow of hero PC Andrew Harper (pictured) for killers of emergency service workers to get life sentence

The heroic officer died after being dragged behind their getaway car for more than a mile. Yet his killers, who were sentenced for manslaughter, could be freed in as little as eight-and-a-half years. 

Mr Hewitt said the law must be strengthened to deter attacks on police. 

He said: ‘Every day, police officers and staff are out in communities keeping people safe, protecting the vulnerable, and dealing with crime and criminals. 

‘Those officers and staff deserve the full protection of the criminal justice system, and I support Lissie in driving the consideration on how best this can be achieved.’    

Yesterday Mr Hewitt said the law must be strengthened to deter attacks on police.

Referring to the recent murder of Metropolitan Police officer Matt Ratana who was shot dead by a suspect in a police station last month, he said: ‘Every day, police officers and staff are out in communities keeping people safe, protecting the vulnerable, and dealing with crime and criminals.

‘In doing so, they will often place themselves in harm’s way to do their duty and, tragically, as we have seen again in recent weeks, that can result in the ultimate sacrifice.

‘Those officers and staff deserve the full protection of the criminal justice system, and I support Lissie in driving the consideration on how best this can be achieved.’

Mrs Harper wants to change the law so that anyone convicted of killing an emergency services worker would receive a life sentence with a specified minimum term in prison.

The National Police Chiefs’ Council is the latest police organisation to lend its backing to the campaign, which has also received the support of the Police Federation of England and Wales, representing rank and file officers and the Superintendents Association.

Lissie, now 29, had been married to Andrew, 28, for just four weeks when he was killed by a gang of three teenage thieves in August last year. Pictured on their wedding day

Lissie, now 29, had been married to Andrew, 28, for just four weeks when he was killed by a gang of three teenage thieves in August last year. Pictured on their wedding day

Mr Hewitt said he was keen to hear the detail of the proposed legislation.

He said: ‘It was good to have the chance to meet with Lissie and discuss her campaign for Harper’s Law.

‘We discussed the detail of the proposed legislation and the work that is being undertaken within the Home Office and Ministry of Justice to progress drafting.

‘It was positive to learn of the cross-party and cross policing support that exists.”

Following the meeting on Monday, Mrs Harper said: ‘The National Police Chiefs’ Council are clearly an important and influential group, representing Chief Constables across the country.

‘They have the ear of politicians and the Home Secretary, and so it was really great to meet with Martin Hewitt and talk to him about the plans for Harper’s Law.

Mrs Harper (pictured) wants to change the law so that anyone convicted of killing an emergency services worker would receive a life sentence with a specified minimum term in prison

Mrs Harper (pictured) wants to change the law so that anyone convicted of killing an emergency services worker would receive a life sentence with a specified minimum term in prison

‘It was a really positive discussion, and we were happy to explain to Martin what Harper’s Law will be and why it is needed to protect our emergency services heroes.

‘It’s great to hear he is backing our campaign and that he was happy to help and offer support in the future.’ It comes after the Home Secretary Priti Patel gave a commitment to working with the widow to achieve Harper’s Law this week at the Conservative Party Conference.

Mrs Harper added: ‘Having the vocal support of the Home Secretary for Harper’s Law is truly appreciated. She shares my revulsion at those who think they can get away with despicable crimes against our emergency services heroes.

‘Having the support of the Government and those on Opposition benches means that if we all work together we can achieve Harper’s Law, which would be a fitting legacy to Andrew.’

Read more at DailyMail.co.uk