WHS alumni loses life in line of duty

Published 9:25 pm Tuesday, April 1, 2014

BCCC | CONTRIBUTED GRADUATING CLASS: Thalmann is pictured here, back row, third from the right, with his graduating class of 2013 for BLET School.

GRADUATING CLASS: Thalmann is pictured here, back row, third from the right, with his graduating class of 2013 for BLET School.


Officer Alexander Thalmann, a Washington High School and Beaufort County Community College graduate, was tragically shot Friday in New Bern by a man he had stopped because of suspicious activity.

According to reports, Thalmann and Officer Justin R. Wester stopped Bryan Stallings in the area of Craven Terrace at about 11:45 p.m. on Friday. Stallings ran and started shooting at the two officers, hitting Thalmann.

Thalmann, who had been with the New Bern Police Department for seven months, died from his injuries on Monday with his family by his side.

According to Capt. Russell Davenport of the Beaufort County Sheriff’s Office, Thalmann’s was his student at Basic Law Enforcement Training School.

“He was an exceptional student,” said Russell Davenport. “It was definitely a privilege teaching him.”

Davenport stated that, as one of the first instructors that students encounter, he teaches ethics — a subject in which Thalmann excelled.

“I go around the room and ask them why they want to go into law enforcement,” Davenport said. “I remember him saying that he wanted to protect those who couldn’t protect themselves. I told him that if you want a job where you get little pay, you put your life on the line every day and you serve the public, then you’re in the right classroom — and, of course, he didn’t get up and leave. He stayed.”

Davenport went on to say how Thalmann was intelligent and well liked. He also participated in a ride-along program with the Beaufort County Sheriff’s Office before and during BLET School.

According to a statement from New Bern Police Chief Toussaint E. Summers Jr., Thalmann spent seven short months with the NBPD, but his dedication and service to the community were evident from the very beginning. He leaves behind family, coworkers, friends and a brotherhood of officers who remain committed to keeping our communities safe.

According to reports, the family and NBPD has received an outpouring of support from law enforcement all over the area and some from across the state.

“Everybody at our sheriff’s office is saddened to hear about this tragic event, but all law enforcement is saddened,” Davenport said. “It’s bad for something like this to happen, but this can happen any day. We put our lives on the line every day, and it is hard to be reminded when this actually happens — it’s a bad way to be reminded.”

Thalmann was a talented soccer player; an active volunteer with the Pamlico Tar River Foundation; a United States Marine; completed BLET School at Beaufort County Community College in June 2013; and charismatic and wise beyond his age, according to his obituary which can be found on page two of the Washington Daily News.