PCSO Julia James: Man in 20s arrested in connection with murder

Police appealing for more information as suspect remains in custody

Sam Hancock
Saturday 08 May 2021 17:50
<p>The mother-of-two was last seen walking her dog</p>

The mother-of-two was last seen walking her dog

Police investigating the murder of PCSO Julia James have arrested a man in his 20s.

The man, a British national from the Canterbury area, was arrested at 9.30pm on Friday night and remains in custody, Kent Police said.

His name has not yet been released to the media.

Ms James, a much-loved police community support officer, known for her work helping domestic violence victims, was found dead on the outskirts of Akholt Wood near her home in Snowdown, Kent, on 27 April.

A post-mortem examination revealed the 53-year-old died from significant head injuries.

Appealing to the public once more for information, Kent Asst Ch Const Tom Richards said: “We continue to urge anyone with information, no matter how small or insignificant it may seem, to contact us.

“If you were in the Snowdown area between 1pm and 4.30pm on Tuesday 27 April please contact us.

“This includes anyone local who may have seen something out of place at the time, or who came across someone who made them feel uneasy – such as feeling compelled to cross the road or change the route they were walking.”

On Friday, Kent Police released an image of a man they described as being potentially “very relevant” to their enquiry, and urged him to come forward.

But the force later said he had been identified and they were no longer appealing for information about him.

Ms James, described as “fiercely loyal” by her family, was out walking her pet dog Toby, a Jack Russell, when she was killed.

A picture of her was released by police earlier this week, showing her in the clothes she was wearing on the day she died – a light blue waterproof coat, blue jeans and dark Wellington-style brown boots.

Kent Police has released a new image of Julia James showing the murdered PCSO in the last clothes she was seen wearing

While police hunt for Ms James’ killer, local residents have been warned to “remain cautious, vigilant and aware of your surroundings when you are out and about”.

In a notice issued by Kent Police, which was distributed door to door in the area by fellow PCSOs, and shared on social media, people were warned to inform someone before leaving their home and pre-plan walking routes.

It also advised anyone leaving their house to let a friend or family member know how long they plan to be gone.

Crimestoppers has offered a reward of up to £10,000 for information that leads to Ms James’ killer being convicted.

Anyone with information regarding Ms James’s murder is asked to contact Kent Police on 0800 0514 526.

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