CHARLES TOWN — Charles Town Chief of Police Chris Kutcher took over the reins of the police force April 20, according to Mayor Peggy Smith.
Kutcher, an 11-year veteran on the force was one of 111 applicants that filed for the position.
“Applicants came from across the country,” Smith said, adding she set up a committee that consisted of seasoned law enforcement people.
“My committee included myself, retired chief Barry Subelsky, Don Clendening, Ed Boober, former sheriff and myself,” Smith said.
Smith said it took months of searching before the committee interviewed the top six applicants. “All were very good. One was from Kansas, one from Washington state.”
Kutcher had the advantage being local and knowing the area.
“Chris was already doing an outstanding job as a lieutenant and detective,” Smith said.
“He is well qualified. He interviewed well and we are pleased to have him serve as our new chief.”
There are currently 14 officers in the Charles Town Police Department.
Kutcher, 37, said, “I am honored and privileged to be selected chief.”
He said he has already made some issues priorities.
“We are working on day-to-day operations,” he said. “I will be focusing on some training.”
Kutcher is married, has two sons and lives in Kearneysville. He said he has resided in the Eastern Panhandle for 23 years.
He is a graduate of Wesleyan College, the National FBI Academy and West Virginia State Police Academy of Law Enforcement.
Kutcher replaced former chief Barry Subelsky who retired in January after serving as chief of the force for six years.