Dumfries Town Council appointed James McCarthy as the new police chief Nov. 13.

The council unanimously voted at a special meeting to name McCarthy as chief, said Mayor Derrick Wood. McCarthy, who has worked in law enforcement since 1995, served as acting chief since Oct. 14, Wood said. He will be sworn in on Tuesday, Nov. 20.

The council interviewed four sergeants who work for the Dumfries Police Department, including McCarthy.

“McCarthy had the most experience, and he will be well respected among all the police officers,” Wood said.

McCarthy is “well rounded,” bringing finance and grant writing skills, Wood said, adding he was recommended by a former commonwealth’s attorney for Caroline County.

“We think he has the heart for the community, and he has the heart for training young police officers and making sure they do things the right way,” Wood said. “I think that’s what our community wants to see and what our community deserves.”

McCarthy will oversee 14 employees in the police department. In the coming years, Wood said he would like the town’s police department to be accredited by the Virginia Department of Criminal Justice Services.


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