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East Bay community remembers deputy killed in Idaho

The shooting death of a sheriff’s deputy in Idaho is hitting many in the Bay Area hard. 

The 27-year-old officer grew up in Walnut Creek and began his career in Contra Costa County.

“From the very first time you met him he had a smile on his face and was energetic and he just showed up to do whatever you asked him to,” Berean High School Principal Nicholas Harris said.

“Tobin was full of life. You knew when he was around because he was laughing and he was giggling. He was having a good time,” teacher Brandon Runyon said.

That’s how teachers at Berean Christian High School in Walnut Creek describe their former student. 

They say Tobin Bolter was outgoing, giving, and laser focused on becoming a police officer even in high school. 

“He was determined he was headstrong. He knew exactly what he wanted to do,” Runyon said.

The Ada County Sheriff’s deputy was shot and killed during a traffic stop in Boise, Idaho Saturday night. 

The Walnut Creek native had moved to Idaho with his wife less than two years ago for a change of pace, and to start a family 

“We are broken. Tobin went up to Idaho for a slower pace of life and we missed him and to get this news was was just tragic to us,” Harris said.

Bolter began his law enforcement career at the Pleasant Hill Police Department where the chief says he was a SWAT team crisis negotiator, started up the department’s drone program and received a commendation for helping save people from an apartment fire in 2022. 

“Really you know wasn’t one of those guys who was thinking about himself. He was always thinking about others, and how he could give back and impact them,” Harris said.

Harris said that after college, Bolter returned to his alma mater to coach track and cross country while he attended the police academy. Harris says he poured everything he could into the kids he coached. 

“Preparing them to go out into the world and be great people as well,” he said.

As the Boise community pays tribute to Bolter, those who know and love him in the Bay Area say they’re hurting, but are also proud. 

“The world needs more people like him, folks who are willing to serve and to look out for other people,” Harris said.

Source: NBC Bay Area

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