PC Andrew Harper murder accused said he ‘watched Fast and Furious’ on night of killing, court told

A TEENAGE driver claimed he had been watching the film Fast & Furious on the night he dragged PC Andrew Harper to his death after attempting to steal a quad bike, a court has heard.

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Henry Long, 19, allegedly drove at speeds of 42.5mph on winding country lanes for more than a mile after PC Harper became entangled in a strap attached to his Seat Toledo on the evening of August 15 last year.

The Old Bailey has heard the 28-year-old officer had been trying to apprehend Long and two other youths after they made off with a quad bike from a home in Berkshire.

Long, along with his passengers Jessie Cole and Albert Bowers, both 18, have denied murder but admitted conspiring to steal the £10,000 bike.

Long has also pleaded guilty to Pc Harper’s manslaughter, jurors have been told.

On the second day of the retrial, prosecutor Jonathan Laidlaw QC told how the defendants were arrested soon after the Seat was located by a police helicopter at Four Houses Corner travellers’ site.

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After being told a police officer had died, Long allegedly said words along the lines of: “Look at me. Do I look like a murderer?”

Later, in a prepared statement, he said he had been at the caravan site that evening.

He said: “We watched DVDs. One was Goonies, Fast & Furious. I went bed I think around 10.30pm. Police woke me up. I had been outside just for a cigarette but otherwise had not left.”

On being charged, Long allegedly said: “I don’t give a f*** about any of this.”

Mr Laidlaw told jurors that Long now accepts he was the driver of the car but was “still refusing to face up to the whole truth”.

He said Long maintains he did not know he was dragging anybody for the mile or so he drove down to the A4.

But the prosecutor suggested the evidence would show “he knew perfectly well he was dragging a person behind the car – furthermore it could only have been a police officer from the unmarked car that had confronted them in Admoor Lane”.

The retrial of Long and Bowers, from Mortimer, near Reading, and Cole, of Aldermaston, continues.

Reading Chronicle