MARTINSBURG, W.Va. — Martinsburg’s Police Chief has announced he’s stepping down after more than

four decades of service to the city.

A press release from the City of Martinsburg Monday confirmed Chief George Swartwood’s last day on the job

will be June 9th.

Chief Swartwood talked about his enthusiasm for the work:

“It’s been the greatest honor of my career to lead the men and women of the Martinsburg Police
Department,” said Chief Swartwood. “I love Martinsburg and I love the Martinsburg Police Department.
I am extremely proud of the dedication and professionalism of the entire department. Together, MPD
has made great strides as a Police Department in every aspect, competitive increased wages, the very
finest of equipment and the most cutting-edge police building in the state.

Earlier in the year, Chief Swartwood spoke with great pride about his department’s accomplishments:

I’m confident that the Martinsburg Police Department will continue to thrive and the time is right to enjoy retirement, my family
and my church. I sincerely thank my family and everyone who has been by my side during my career.
There are simply too many individuals to name. It would not have been possible without them,” Chief Swartwood said.

Chief Swartwood began his law enforcement career and his tenure with Martinsburg in 1984. Prior to his
role as Chief of Police, a position he has served in for the last three years, Chief Swartwood rose through
the ranks from patrolman (1984-1990), detective/detective sergeant (1990-2008), detective lieutenant
(2008-2012), detective captain (2012-2016) and deputy chief (2016-2020), according to the release.

Mayor Kevin Knowles congratulates Chief Swartwood on his retirement and praises Chief Swartwood’s
unquestionable loyalty and dedication to the City of Martinsburg and the Martinsburg Police Department.
“There is no question that Chief Swartwood loves our city. In his 40 years of public service, George has
been one of the most dedicated, loyal, passionate and enthusiastic public servants in every role that he
has held. There are very few people in our city and state who do not know George. I cannot adequately
express how much I appreciate his service and contributions to our city and our people. His contributions
to public safety and his legacy within the city and our Police Department will be long-enduring. I am
grateful for his friendship and wish him the absolute best in his retirement. It is well-deserved.”
City Manager Mark Baldwin has worked with Chief Swartwood for the last 27 years. Baldwin says, “It has
been an honor working with Chief Swartwood and I also want to thank him for his unquestionable
commitment to public safety and service. George will be missed. We wish him the best of luck and well
wishes in his retirement and future endeavors.”

Chief Swartwood has served as MPD’s representative for Berkeley County Crime Solvers; has assisted in
the development of the Citizens Police Academy; was selected by former chiefs to perform critical
administrative internal investigations and administrative investigations; graduate from West Virginia
State Police Basic Academy in 1984; graduate from the FBI National Academy in 1992; special deputation
by the FBI in 1992 and 1995 and special deputation by the US Marshal Service in 2007, as well as served
as acting Chief of Police briefly in 2010.

During his career, Chief Swartwood has investigated a variety of crimes, including homicides and
robberies, has mediated disputes, performed background investigations including internal and
administrative investigations. He has managed the criminal investigative unit of MPD, supervised
detectives and various officers and was instrumental in establishing an Honor Guard and implementing
the Handle with Care program and the Martinsburg Crime Interdiction Response Team (CIRT), in addition
to many other accomplishments during his career.

City Manager Mark Baldwin stated that the process to fill the vacancy created by Chief Swartwood’s
retirement announcement will be solidified in the coming weeks.