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Julia James murder suspect Callum Wheeler pleads not guilty


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A 21-year-old man accused of murdering PCSO Julia James has denied any involvement in her death.

Callum Wheeler is charged with killing the mum-of-two by inflicting serious head injuries as she walked her dog in Snowdown, between Canterbury and Dover.

Julia James was found dead on Tuesday, April 27
Julia James was found dead on Tuesday, April 27

Wheeler, of Sunshine Corner Avenue in nearby Aylesham, was arrested 10 days after Julia, 53, was found dead on April 27 this year.

The mum-of-two's body was discovered close to Ackholt Wood, about 400 metres from her home.

Wheeler appeared at Maidstone Crown Court today via videolink from Broadmoor, where he is being held on remand.

Wearing a burgundy sweater, he spoke to confirm his name and that he understood the proceedings.

Asked to enter a plea for the charge of murder, he replied: "Not guilty."

A trial had been set to start at Canterbury Crown Court on November 29, but has been put back to a date yet to be fixed.

A photo of Julia James wearing what was wearing on the day she died. Picture: Kent Police
A photo of Julia James wearing what was wearing on the day she died. Picture: Kent Police

Wheeler was remanded in custody until his next court appearance.

Julia, who was found with her Jack Russell by her side, worked with the domestic violence unit at Canterbury police station.

A post-mortem investigation revealed she suffered "significant head injuries", sparking a widespread hunt for her killer.

She had been working from home on the day of her death.

Officers spent weeks scouring land in Snowdown and days in Sunshine Corner Avenue, where Wheeler's home was cordoned off.

To read more of our in depth coverage of all of the major trials coming out of crown and magistrates' courts across the county, click here.

For information on how we can report on court proceedings, click here.

Read more: All the latest news from Canterbury

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