Beacon Mayor’s Stepson Killed in Motorcycle Accident

Officer James

Walden police officer was 31

Dustin James, a police officer with the Walden Police Department and the stepson of Beacon’s mayor, was killed on April 18 while off duty when his motorcycle collided with a car in Gardiner.

James, 31, died at MidHudson Regional Hospital in Poughkeepsie after his Harley-Davidson collided with a Toyota Camry driven by Alejandra Rodas-Perez, 19, of Bloomingburg. Among the officer’s survivors are his mother, Etha, and his stepfather, Beacon Mayor Randy Casale.

James was posthumously promoted to the rank of investigator in the Walden Police Department. He also was a part-time officer for Montgomery.

James, who lived in Middletown, was born Aug. 25, 1985, in Poughkeepsie, the son of Byron James and Etha Grogan. He began his career with the Walden P.D. 10 years ago as a dispatcher after serving in that same position for the Town of Fishkill.

Besides his parents and stepfather, other survivors include his wife, Maryellen James, his stepmother Linda James, his sister Jessica Hein (Kaspar), his brother Nicolas James, his nephew Koltan, his stepsister Gina Russo, his grandparents Phil and Lorraine James, his mother-in-law Jeanne Marie Flanagan and his brothers-in-law Matthew, Michael and Mitchell Flanagan.

A police service was held on April 20 with a funeral mass is scheduled for 1:30 p.m. on Friday, April 21, at Holy Name of Mary Church, 89 Union St., in Montgomery. Memorial contributions may be made to the Walden PBA, P.O. Box 648, Walden, NY 12586, of which James served as president.