PCSO Julia James's murderer 'left mobile phone at home to avoid detection'

The killer of PCSO Julia James may have deliberately left their phone at home to avoid being traced as desperate police stopped cars in the hope of a breakthrough, it was revealed today.

A lack of GPS data close to where the mother-of-two was bludgeoned to death in a Kent village north of Dover suggests that her attacker is 'local' and a man, a source has claimed.

Mrs James was murdered eight days ago but no arrests have been made, with Britain's FBI, the National Crime Agency, brought in to help with the forensics search of the fields where she was found dead on Tuesday, April 27.

As the hunt for the fugitive continues, Kent officers were stopping drivers in Aylesham, asking them where they were on the day she died and taking their names, dates of birth, addresses, phone numbers and registration plates. Such is the panic locally, dog walkers are being urged not to go out alone and even to carry a rape alarm or walking stick.

It came as Julia's family hit out at the lack of public uproar around her murder - two months after mass vigils and protests over the abduction and murder of Sarah Everard, who was found in woodland around 25 miles from where Mrs James died. Her son Patrick visited flowers left in her memory yesterday.

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A source told The Sun: 'A week is a long time in a murder investigation. It's understood extensive phone signal and GPS checks have failed to locate anything of note, leading them to suspect he has left it at home on purpose.

'Phone data and analysis plays a huge part in the vast majority of murder investigations. A huge amount of effort is going into finding him. Not taking a mobile phone would suggest he's local as he would need to know the area.'

PCSO Julia James in Aylesham, Kent, whose body was discovered at Akholt Wood on Tuesday close to Snowdown, Kent, with police reportedly unable to trace the killer's mobile phone

PCSO Julia James in Aylesham, Kent, whose body was discovered at Akholt Wood on Tuesday close to Snowdown, Kent, with police reportedly unable to trace the killer's mobile phone

Officers stopped drivers in Aylesham, Kent, and were asked what they knew about the murder and where they were on the day Julia died as officers fail to make any arrests

Officers stopped drivers in Aylesham, Kent, and were asked what they knew about the murder and where they were on the day Julia died as officers fail to make any arrests

Patrick James, Julia's son, looks at floral tributes left near her family home in Snowdown, near Aylesham, East Kent

Patrick James, Julia's son, looks at floral tributes left near her family home in Snowdown, near Aylesham, East Kent

Julia's heartbroken neighbours, who have praised their kind and funny friend, put candles out in her memory last night

Julia's heartbroken neighbours, who have praised their kind and funny friend, put candles out in her memory last night

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Julia had finished her shift and headed out from home with her Jack Russell at around 3pm - her body, with her loyal dog sat next to it, was found at 4pm on Tuesday, April 27

Julia had finished her shift and headed out from home with her Jack Russell at around 3pm - her body, with her loyal dog sat next to it, was found at 4pm on Tuesday, April 27

Yesterday well-wishers left flowers and lit candles in the village of Aylesham, Kent, close to where Julia, 53, was found dead near Canterbury last Tuesday with her Jack Russell terrier, Toby, unharmed by her side. 

It comes less than two months after thousands took to the streets to take a stand after Sarah Everard's body was found just 25 miles away in Great Chart, Kent. 

Julia's cousin Samantha Griffin posted on Facebook on Monday: 'Where is the uproar about my beautiful cousin? Where is the huge outrage and pouring of despair? Where are the vigils and protests about her murder?

'She was walking her dog, near her home. Thats all......and somebody must know something about what happened!

'The person who did this, is walking our streets and your communities...so let's stand up and make sure we swamp social media with her beautiful face in the hope that we can get information or the vile human who did this decides to hold their hands up. Our family, her friends and colleagues will not rest.'

Another relative, Lois Ghost, also said in a Facebook post: 'Any information, however small could be so valuable - please continue to share this message and let's get the monster that did this!' 

The daughter of the murdered PCSO has urged supporters to light a candle on their doorsteps to remember her a week after she was killed. 

She lit a candle and posted an emotional social media post saying: 'There are no goodbyes for us, wherever you are, you will always be in my heart.'

Bethan placed the blue candle next to a framed picture of her mother in the window of her home as thousands of well-wishers followed suit as part of the #justice4julia campaign.

Next to it was a white heart-shaped stone with 'the ones we love are always in our hearts' printed on it. 

Meanwhile, Home Secretary Priti Patel wrote on Twitter: 'Like many others across the country tonight, my thoughts and prayers are with Julia's family, friends, and colleagues. Please join them in lighting a candle at 7pm in her memory.'

And Boris Johnson said last night: 'Tonight we remember PCSO Julia James. My thoughts are with her friends and family.' 

Julia's cousin Samantha Griffin posted on Facebook on Monday: 'Where is the uproar about my beautiful cousin? Where is the huge outrage and pouring of despair? Where are the vigils and protests about her murder?'

Julia's cousin Samantha Griffin posted on Facebook on Monday: 'Where is the uproar about my beautiful cousin? Where is the huge outrage and pouring of despair? Where are the vigils and protests about her murder?'

Julia's daughter Bethan lit a candle and posted an emotional social media post saying: 'There are no goodbyes for us, wherever you are, you will always be in my heart'

Julia's daughter Bethan lit a candle and posted an emotional social media post saying: 'There are no goodbyes for us, wherever you are, you will always be in my heart'

Flowers have been left by mourners near Julia's home following her murder last week

Flowers have been left by mourners near Julia's home following her murder last week

Lit candles and notes were among items left in tribute following the death of Julia last week

Lit candles and notes were among items left in tribute following the death of Julia last week

Priti Patel posted on Twitter

Boris Johnson posted on Twitter

Priti Patel and Boris Johnson joined others around the country to remember Julia a week on from her death

A pile of floral tributes was left near Julia's home in Aylesham a week on from her death

A pile of floral tributes was left near Julia's home in Aylesham a week on from her death 

Julia's uncle urged the public to 'think hard' after police signalled they were no closer to finding her killer. 

Sharing a Kent Police Facebook post about the murder alongside a photo of Julia on her day, Michael Turnbull, 65, said: 'Someone knows something but maybe doesn't realise yet. Think hard.'

Mr Turnbull previously posted an emotional tribute to Julia on Facebook, in which he pleaded with members of the public to find her 'monster' killer.  

It came as family of the murdered PCSO branded her killer a 'vile human' and 'monster' and her daughter called for a candlelight doorstep vigil to remember her on Tuesday at 7pm. 

Meanwhile, the head of the police force investigating the murder warned people in the area to 'be very careful about going out alone'.

Kent Chief Constable Alan Pughsley's comments, made a week after her death, will strike fear into families living near to the crimescene.

He told

: 'At the moment people have to be very conscious, very safe and very careful about going out alone. We will find out all we can to find out whoever did this and bring them to justice.

'People have to be vigilant and have to be very careful.'      

Julia's daughter Bethan Coles urged friends and villagers to light a candle instead so police resources were not diverted away from the investigation.

Julia's family started a social media campaign to help keep awareness of the murder investigation in the public eye called #justiceforjulia.

Posting on Facebook her daughter Bethan said: 'I'm so grateful for people sharing posts for #justiceforjulia

'A number of people have asked about holding a vigil for Mum, and whilst I am so grateful for people wanting to remember her, I am very conscious that any gathering would need to be policed (if it was even allowed), I've discussed this with my family and we are in agreement that we would prefer all police resources to be concentrating on the investigation as there is so much work to be done.

'I've been thinking perhaps we could ask those who wish to remember Mum to light a candle for her and leave it on their doorstep. This would be a beautiful nod to Mum in a way that doesn't intrude on the Police investigation.

'It marks a week since we lost Mum. At 7pm I will light a candle for her. #justiceforjulia' 

Julia James with her son, Patrick Davis, in June 2017, and her daughter Bethan Coles

Julia James with her son, Patrick Davis, in June 2017, and her daughter Bethan Coles

A lit candle marks one week since the death of Julia, at her family home in Snowdown, near Aylesham, East Kent

A lit candle marks one week since the death of Julia, at her family home in Snowdown, near Aylesham, East Kent

Kent Police search officers continue their search of fields near the scene where PCSO Julia James was killed at Akholt Wood. The National Crime Agency has been brought in

Kent Police search officers continue their search of fields near the scene where PCSO Julia James was killed at Akholt Wood. The National Crime Agency has been brought in

Julia's daughter Bethan Coles urged people to share the message to light a candle in memory of her mother tonight

Julia's daughter Bethan Coles urged people to share the message to light a candle in memory of her mother tonight

Reclaim These Streets, a group set up in light of the murder of Sarah Everard, has also called for people to join the doorstep candle vigil in memory of the murdered PCSO.

In a statement posted on Twitter, it said: 'A week ago, PSCO Julia James was murdered while out walking her dog.

'Our thoughts are with her family, and we're joining their call to light a candle on your doorstep tonight at 7pm to remember Julia and to shine a light on the issue of women's safety.' 

Police search teams are continuing to scour areas of woodland and fields close to the spot on a footpath on the edge of Ackholt Wood near Aylesham, Kent.

It came as terrified families living near the path where Julia was killed have been advised to tell loved ones where they are going, and when they will be back, before leaving the house.

Locals are also being warned to keep mobile phones fully charged and with them at all times while also carefully planning walking routes, as police continue to hunt for the fugitive killer.  

A Kent Police notice posted on Facebook issued safety advice said they 'understand if people are feeling uncertain at the moment about their safety' after the murder.

And it urges locals to 'remain cautious, vigilant and aware of your surroundings when you are out and about'.

A strong police presence remained in the nearby village of Aylesham, Kent with her PCSO colleagues patrolling the streets.

They have also set up a special blue tent in the historic Market Square for worried residents to speak to officers about their concerns.

Dover Chief Inspector Dan Carter of Kent Police reassured residents 'some of the very best detectives in the land' are trying to catch the killer.

And although 'no arrest has been made; we are not ruling anything out and are open to all possibilities'.

He said in a message to locals: 'As your district commander, I am truly shocked and saddened by the death of PCSO Julia James.

'Julia was well liked and highly respected by her colleagues and members of the public and we are all devastated by what has happened. 

Julia was walking her Jack Russell (pictured: Ms James and her dog) at the time of her death. The dog remained at the scene with her body, according to reports

Julia was walking her Jack Russell (pictured: Ms James and her dog) at the time of her death. The dog remained at the scene with her body, according to reports

This worrying update from the police told people to let others know where they were going before leaving their homes

This worrying update from the police told people to let others know where they were going before leaving their homes

'She will be fondly remembered and missed by all - my thoughts go out to Julia's family and friends and to each and every one of you within the community at this difficult time.

'One of the biggest policing teams I have known, including some of the very best detectives in the land, are working tirelessly, leaving no stone unturned, to bring the offender to justice.

'Working with our partners, the safety of our communities remains our priority and we urge anyone who has concerns to speak with our officers who are out and about in the local community, or contact us.'

An appeal for information says it is 'vitally important' anyone who was in the area on Monday or Tuesday and saw something suspicious, regular walkers of the route who noticed something out of place or drivers who passed with dashcam footage to come forward.

A 'significant uniformed presence' will be in the area and surrounding villages throughout the week.

It came after it emerged on Sunday local police were aware of a potential dognapping incident which took place weeks before Ms James's death - with some now suggesting the killing could have been a 'dog napping gone wrong'.

The warning, published in a parish magazine, urges dog walkers not to go out alone and even to carry an alarm or walking stick.

Police say the warning was sparked by a report of a suspicious man in a BMW approaching two dog walkers back in March.

The man, thought to be in his 60s, is said to have offered to 'exchange' the pair's dog for cigarettes.

The warning reads: 'Dog owners are warned to be vigilant when your dog is outside the house. Your dog cannot be safely left unsupervised even in your own garden!

'On Tuesday, March 16, two dog-walkers were approached - in broad daylight - by a man in his 60s, from a black BMW in the lanes between Nonington

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