THREE teenagers charged with the murder of Wallingford police officer Andrew Harper have been remanded in custody to await trial.

Henry Long, 18, from Mortimer in Reading, and two 17-year-old boys who cannot be named because of their age, appeared at the Old Bailey in London on Thursday afternoon.

The teenagers had appeared at Reading Magistrates' Court earlier in the day where they spoke only to confirm their names, dates of birth and addresses at an eight-minute hearing.

They, along with Thomas King, 21, from Basingstoke, are also accused of conspiracy to steal a quad bike.

The teenagers were all remanded in custody to appear at the same court for a plea and trial preparation hearing on December 13.

King was released on conditional bail to return to Old Bailey on December 13 as well.

The court appearances all followed the surprise news on Thursday that another man accused of murdering PC Harper, Jed Foster, had had the charge against him dropped.

Prosecutors at the Old Bailey on Thursday said there was no longer a realistic prospect of conviction and moved to end the case against the 20-year-old.

Newlywed PC Harper was killed on August 15 near the village of Sulhamstead in Berkshire when he was dragged under a van while responding to reports of a burglary.

The 28-year-old had been married to his partner Lissie for just four weeks when he died.

Based at Abingdon Police Station as part of the force's roads division, PC Harper had grown up in Wallingford and was well known and liked in and around the town.

Thames Valley Police has announced that PC Harper will have a full police funeral, but a date has yet to be announced for the event.