I am deeply saddened today with the senseless murder of an old friend and "Brother in Arms". Yesterday afternoon, Virginia State Police Trooper J.A. Walker was shot multiple times, murdered for no reason on Interstate 85, while stopped to check on a vehicle pulled over on the shoulder of the road. Trooper J.A. Walker joined the Virginia State Police in the early 70's and had been assigned to the Dinwiddie/Petersburg area of Virginia since 1986. I met Trooper Walker early on in my career with the Petersburg Bureau of Police. It was common practice for city and county police to provide "back up" for Troopers on traffic stops or accident investigations, and vice versa. Trooper Walker was a giant of a man, in both stature and integrity. He was truly "one of the good guys". He was respected by all who knew him, whether it be the general public, fellow officers, Prosecutors and Defense Attorneys alike and even those he arrested. He treated all with great kindness and respect. He took his job seriously and believed that there was good in everyone. He was the epitome of what a cop should be. Dedicated and professional, yet able to crack a joke to lighten the mood, he brought joy to many. For me, he was a friend and role model.
J.D. Thomas is a Board Certified Forensic Science Analyst and Board Certified Criminal Defense Investigator.