Sgt. James Hunt Named New Charleston Police Chief

Mayor Amy Shuler Goodwin announced during a press conference Wednesday afternoon that Sgt. James “Tyke” Hunt will be the next Chief of Police for the Charleston Police Department. The announcement comes as Chief Opie Smith, Jr. retires after 21 years with the Department.


“I am honored to announce the appointment of Sgt. Hunt as Chief of the Charleston Police Department. Throughout his fifteen-year tenure with CPD, Hunt has worked tirelessly to make sure that Charleston and her people are safe,” said Mayor Amy Shuler Goodwin. “We wish Chief Smith the best in his upcoming retirement and thank him for 21 years of dedicated service to the City.” 


The new Chief is a Charleston native that joined the Charleston Police Department in 2004. In his fifteen-year career, Hunt has been part of several divisions across the department. After starting in patrol, he transferred to the Housing Division in 2007 working with housing authorities and conducting investigations. He then worked for five years in the Criminal Investigation Division as a detective – later becoming the Assistant Chief Detective for an additional five years. Most recently, Hunt has worked as the METRO Drug Unit Commander overseeing a multi-agency task force specifically assembled to combat drug crimes.


Throughout his time with CPD, Hunt has also become a Field Training Officer, Team Supervisor for the CPD Dive Team, Polygraph Examiner, Law Enforcement Fitness Specialist and member of the SWAT and sniper teams.


“It is an honor and privilege to become the next Chief of the Charleston Police Department,” said Hunt “I look forward to leading the brave men and women who keep our City safe.”