DINWIDDIE COUNTY, Va. (WRIC) -
On Thursday morning, Virginia State Police unveiled the memorial portrait of Master Trooper Junius A. Walker, who was killed in the line of duty last spring.
Trooper Walker’s portrait will also be dedicated during a VSP memorial service.
On March 7, 2013, Trooper Walker pulled up next to 28-year-old Russell E. Brown III’s vehicle, which was stopped on the shoulder of I-85 and appeared to be disabled, to see if he needed any help. Brown then opened fire on the 63-year-old trooper, whose patrol car ran off the road, coming to rest 30 feet from the travel lanes. He ultimately died from multiple gunshot wounds.
Brown exchanged gunfire with a responding trooper before fleeing into the woods. He tore off his clothing as he ran, and was later found naked at a towing company on the 19600 block of Boydton Plank Road.
According to Dinwiddie County Commonwealth's Attorney Lisa Caruso, a clinical psychologist determined Brown was incompetent to stand trial. Police said in court documents that Brown made unusual comments and behaved erratically toward his family in the weeks prior to Walker's murder. Brown claims that God made him kill the master trooper.
In March 2014, Caruso recommended Brown be sent to Central State Hospital for treatment, so that he may stand trial at a later date. A status hearing will be set on June 17. Brown is facing eight felonies, including capital murder.
"Master Trooper Walker was a highly-respected and long-time veteran of our department, which has made his shocking death especially hard on the Virginia State Police family," VSP Superintendent Colonel W. Steven Flaherty said last year. "For 35 years he served us proud as a mentor to multitudes of new troopers, as a valued partner and colleague to his fellow Area 7 troopers, and as a true friend and protector of the Dinwiddie County community. He was and always will be one of Virginia's Finest."
Trooper Walker was a 40-year VSP veteran who left behind a wife and two daughters. Last year, a portion of I-85 was dedicated to Trooper Walker.
On the day of Trooper Walker’s death, then-Governor Bob McDonnell said in a statement, "Today, Virginia lost one of its heroes. Our hearts go out to the family, friends, and Department of State Police, as we mourn the loss of Master Trooper Walker who was killed in the line of duty today after 40 years of service."