Bio & Incident Details
Tour: 6 years
Badge # Not available
Cause: Vehicle pursuit
Offender: Not available
Police Officer III James Walch was killed in an automobile accident while responding to a call for assistance in pursuit of a 13-year-old in a stolen car.
During the pursuit the cruiser struck a patch of black ice on Randolph Road, just west of New Hampshire Avenue, and went out of control. The vehicle spun around and struck a utility pole rear-first, causing the gas tank to rupture and the car to burst into flames. Officer Walch was killed on impact.
Another officer was also on the scene after hitting the same patch of ice in a separate patrol car. That officer received minor burns and scratches while trying to rescue Officer Walch.
Officer Walch had served with the U.S. Marine Corps for four years before serving with the Montgomery County Police Department for six years. He is survived by his wife and son, parents and siblings. He is buried at Gate of Heaven Cemetery in Silver Spring, Maryland.