Det. Charlie Kapps retires after 55 years in law enforcement

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Det. Charlie Kapps retires after 55 years of service. (Photo submitted)

With 55 years in law enforcement, on Sept. 28, Det. Charlie Kapps has decided to hang up.

“Charlie has been a tremendous asset to this office and the citizens of Stokes County,” said Sheriff Joey Lemons. “He is a great friend and mentor to me and he was to everyone who worked alongside him. It was an honor to work alongside Charlie as a detective and also serve as a sheriff. The loss of his knowledge and experience is irreplaceable, but I’m sure he will always accept my phone calls to help in any way he needs.

As a young man, Kapps dropped out of high school and decided to join the United States Marine Corps Reserves in 1958. He remained with the Marine Corps Reserves until 1966. During this time, he started working at Western Electric in Winston Salem, where he and a good friend of his decided to apply to the Winston Salem Police Department in 1960. Kapps says his friend got the job because he had a “University education”.

In 1967, Kapps says his good friend called him and asked if he was still interested in becoming an officer in the Winston Salem Police Department, to which he absolutely replied. This is when his career in law enforcement began under Chief Justice Tucker.

Kapps began his career in law enforcement as a patrol officer, before moving to what was then called Vice and ending up with Winston Salem Police in their Special Narcotics Division. While working for the Winston Salem Police Department, Kapps was sworn in by the Forsyth County Sheriff’s Office, Sheriff Preston Odem, as a special deputy in 1986. In 1988, Charlie left the police department by Winston Salem.

While working as a special assistant in the Forsyth County Sheriff’s Office and part of an 8 county drug task force, Kapps worked on several cases in Stokes County. Because he was helping with narcotics investigations in Stokes County, Sheriff Mike Joyce told Kapps he didn’t want his authority “stopping at the county line.” Sheriff Joyce was sworn in to Kapps as Deputy for Stokes County on September 13, 1991.

In May 1998, Kapps began the next chapter of his law enforcement career and was hired by Chief Tim Patrick of the King Police Department as a patrol officer. Kapps worked with the King Police Department until 2003, when he retired with medical issues as a lieutenant in the Investigations Division.

After retiring from the King Police Department, Kapps began working regularly for the Stokes County Sheriff’s Office as a part-time criminal detective. Throughout his years in the sheriff’s office, Kapps began to specialize in financial crimes. His passion for helping people began to show even more in his work when his enthusiasm showed up because he recovered lost money for a victim, especially an elderly person. From July 2021 to present, Kapps was able to recover over $200,000.00 for victims who were scammed. As it is not an easy task and requires a lot of time and court orders, Kapps has definitely thrived in handling these cases. He currently has outstanding warrants for individuals across the United States, recently bringing a suspect back from Texas to stand trial.

Since Kapps started in 1967, he has completed over 5,900 hours of training, completed Basic Police Training in 1968, earned his Intermediate Law Enforcement Certificate in 1976 and his Advanced law enforcement in 1977. Kapps became a Certified Criminal Justice Instructor in 1991 and a Certified. firearms instructor in 1993.

“Thank you for your service and dedication to citizens, officers and the profession,” said Sheriff Joey Lemons. “You represented the badge with honor. God bless you on your retirement.

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