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Salisbury Police Deputy Chief Shon Barnes sworn in

By Shavonne Walker

shavonne.walker@salisburypost.com

SALISBURY — Although Shon Barnes has been with the Salisbury Police Department as deputy chief about two and a half months, he was joined Monday by his family, colleagues, city officials and residents as he was officially sworn in to office.

Barnes, who was hired to direct the department’s community-oriented policing initiative and neighborhood problem-solving, began with the department May 15.

Barnes’ wife, Stephanie Barnes, and their children — Ashlee, 21; Aeiden, 8; and Addison, 6 — as well as his brother, Asheville police Officer Torian Boone, joined him at the ceremony.

Barnes said his pedigree is not what might be expected of a police officer but what is in his background is “someone who was raised by great parents who trusted in my abilities and taught me the service above everything else is the true measure of a man.”

He thanked his colleagues.

“Our goal is to reduce crime and improve citizen satisfaction with police services. That’s what policing is all about. There’s been a lot of talk recently about community policing,” he said.

Barnes said he really hates the term “community policing” because “it implies that the police and the community are somehow separated. We are not separated. We are the same. We are members of the community, and the community should be members of our police force. Crime prevention is everyone’s responsibility, and that’s the only way it works.”

He thanked Police Chief Jerry Stokes for giving him this opportunity.

“Policing is an opportunity; that’s all it is. It’s not a job. For some it’s a calling, but for everyone it’s an opportunity to help someone who cannot help themselves. It’s an opportunity to do good every day. It’s an opportunity to touch someone’s life in a way that would not be there if you had not taken the responsibility to take your oath of office,” Barnes said.

Stokes said he is as excited as a coach who had signed a star player in hiring Barnes.

“I was really impressed with your abilities from the first time I met you, and I’ve been even more impressed since you’ve been here for these weeks that you’ve been with us,” Stokes said.

Stephanie Barnes said she’s proud of her husband.

“He’s doing what he loves to do,” she said.

Stephanie Barnes said she’s excited for the knowledge that her husband can bring to the Salisbury Police Department.

“We’re just so proud of him. We are happy to be a part of the Salisbury police family,” she said.

Barnes’ daughter Ashlee said she too is proud of her father.

Sue McHugh, who attended the ceremony, said she is excited to have Barnes at the Police Department.

“He’s articulate, centered and experienced,” she said.

Sgt. Corey Brooks said Barnes has knowledge that he’s able to pass along to officers.

“He’s a great asset to this department,” Brooks said.

Capt. Shelia Lingle shared Brooks’ sentiments, saying Barnes is an asset to the community.

“We know he will continue to help this police department become a better department,” Lingle said.

Master Police Officer Chris Schenk said he is happy to have Barnes join the department.

Barnes has a varied background in law enforcement spanning nearly two decades with the Greensboro Police Department. He held multiple positions including juvenile victim’s detective, sergeant in the commercial crimes squad, specialized subject control and arrest techniques instructor, and commanding officer of three different divisions.

He became a law enforcement analyst for radio station 97.1 WQMG and is an adjunct faculty member at Guilford Technical Community College, Winston-Salem State University, and N.C. A&T State University.

Barnes holds a bachelor’s degree in history and pre-law from Elizabeth City State University and a master’s degree in criminal justice from the University of Cincinnati in Ohio. He is currently a Ph.D. candidate in the leadership studies/community and civic engagement program at N.C. A&T State University.

Contact reporter Shavonne Walker at 704-797-4253.

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