Get in touch: send your photos, videos, news & views by texting YORK to 80360 or send an email»
Heather Cooper's partner denies murdering detective
THE partner of a police officer who grew up in York has denied murdering her last autumn.
Peter Foster entered a not guilty plea to the allegation that he killed Det Con Heather Cooper when he appeared before Lewes Crown Court for a plea and case management hearing yesterday.
Miss Cooper was a serving police officer with Surrey Police at the time and Foster is a former detective constable.
The mother-of-two from Acomb was on maternity leave when her body was found in Blackdown Woods in West Sussex last October. She had suffered head and throat injuries. She was 33 and had a three-year-old son and baby daughter.
Foster, 35, of West Street, Haslemere, will now stand trial on June 11 at Lewes Crown Court after he entered his plea before the Recorder of Brighton and Hove, Judge Richard Brown.
Miss Cooper joined Surrey Police in 2003 and worked in the public protection investigation unit at Guildford Police Station.
She received a commendation in 2009 in recognition of her “professionalism, dedication and commitment” among other praise by senior officers.
She grew up in Acomb and was a keen horse rider, training at Naburn Grange Riding Centre. She studied equestrian science at Bishop Burton College in East Yorkshire before training as a policewoman.
After her death, Surrey Police Federation set up a special trust fund to help her two children, when they are old enough, to go to university.
Within months, it attracted donations nearly three times its original target of £10,000.
Miss Cooper’s funeral was held at York Minster in November and a special memorial service was later held in Guildford Cathedral.
The woods where her body was found are owned by the National Trust, close to Haslemere, on the highest point of the South Downs National Park.