Share On Social Media


The death investigation—now ruled a homicide—took place mid-afternoon Friday at a home in the 1600 block of Manor Drive. USA, LLC

The man, identified as James Wallen, was found by his wife about 4:45 p.m. Friday. 

It was the 27th reported homicide to take place in Brevard County since Jan. 1. 

Police and medics arrived within minutes of the wife’s call to 911. 

Police said they believe Inklebarger targeted the single-story home, which sits in the scenic community along the oak and palm tree-lined riverside.

In the front yard is a campaign sign for President Trump while an American flag could be seen hanging from the garage. 

Detectives continue to investigate the case and were awaiting forensics results from the crime scene.

James Wallen was killed in a burglary at his Cocoa home. A photo from his employment application with Brevard Public Schools shows him in 1970.

Wallen served on the Cocoa City Council two times, representing District 2 from 1979-1981 and again from 1983-1986.

Cocoa Detective Chris Hattaway was one of Wallen’s students at Kennedy Middle School in the 1990s when he worked at the Rockledge school as a teacher. 

“As I remember Mr. Wallen, he always had a smile on his face,” Hattaway said. “He was very kind and caring and compassionate to everybody.

She said police have been questioning someone and have that person in custody on unrelated federal charges.

Martinez said Matthew Inklebarger, 42, was taken into custody and is being held by U.S. Marshals on bank robbery charges, unrelated to the robbery and homicide.

Matthew Inklebarger, 43, was taken into custody and is being held by U.S. Marshals on bank robbery charges without bond. He is a suspect in a burglary and homicide in Cocoa, for which police said he will face charges.

Martinez said he will be charged locally with burglary and murder pending Florida Department of Law Enforcement lab results. 

Police are saying that Inklebarger broke into Wallen’s home and killed Wallen during a confrontation before leaving with several stolen items. 

Inklebarger’s friend, 44-year-old Cecilia Poteet, was arrested in connection with the burglary and homicide, according to police reports.

No information was available on the charges or how police connected her to the incident.

Police believe Inklebarger  targeted the single-story home

with a campaign sign for President Trump

Detectives continue to investigate the case and were awaiting forensics results from the crime scene.

Share On Social Media

9 responses to “Trump Sign Owner Killed By Burglar”

  1. should political signs be placed in yards ?

    with people being killed over political signs maybe homes should not have any signs placed in their yards

    1. Perhaps we should not be allowed to write or say anything because any wacko may be offended by it and kill us.

    2. biden signs or ok. just not the trump ones.

      make the election a surprise like last time. so much fun to rerun the exploding heads on the tv networks.

    3. Maybe we should prosecute and deport the thousands of sick career criminals being dumped in our country, instead of trying to reason with them.

    4. Ridiculous! What’s needed is for CNN and friends to stop encouraging violece against Trump supporters. This should have been roundly condemned when people were being told they shouldn’t wear MAGA hats for the same reason. Also it should have been unacceptable for mainstream news agencies to imply that half of the country was racist because they support the President.

  2. I’m ordering two Trump signs and a Trump flag today. Come on in little burglar. I have a little present for you too. Bring your friends. I have plenty to go around.

  3. America has the first amendment. All Americans have the right to their political opinions. This any crimes committed against a person because of political party should be a hate crime .

Leave a Reply