Becker retires from CCSO, joins La Plata police
Retires from sheriff’s office after 30 years
After a dedicated career of 30 years with the Charles County Sheriff’s Office, Maj. Chris Becker’s last day with the agency was Friday. On Monday, he became a captain and assistant chief of the La Plata Police Department.
Becker, born and raised in Bowie, joined the sheriff’s office in 1987 as a patrol officer. Over the course of the next three decades, he spent time in many different capacities, and was often thrust into a leadership role.
“Chris is definitely a leader. It goes without saying,” said Sheriff Troy Berry (D). “You can see that from the diverse nature of his career.”
“He’s a person of integrity,” the sheriff added. “He’s a high energy person, meaning that he loves to be engaged and involved in protecting and serving his community, which he has done for so many years.”
From accident reconstruction, to hostage negotiation, to criminal investigations, to internal affairs, Becker’s diverse experience and calm, professional demeanor, especially during emergency situations, helped propel him through the ranks throughout his career.
As major, Becker served as assistant sheriff of operations, a position he was elevated to under Berry’s administration.
“Corrections, patrol, criminal investigations, all of that falls under this helm,” Becker said of his role. “And it has been a great opportunity to be in charge and help develop all of those components.”
Reflecting on his career, Becker found his work as a narcotics detective to be most satisfying, building cases against higher level drug dealers in the 1990s.
“The heroin epidemic that we’re seeing now wasn’t in existence then,” he said. “Crack and PCP were predominately the drugs of choice when I was in narcotics, but the level of violence was still there. As you see today, it was true back then, almost all crime can be rooted back to a nexus to drugs.”
He spent three years there before he was promoted to sergeant and supervisor of the detectives in the auto theft and robbery unit. Later, he was assigned to the internal affairs unit as an investigator, and eventually was raised to lieutenant and commander of the unit.
In 2005, he made history as the first commander of agency’s newly formed Homeland Security Division, which helped facilitate information-sharing between local, state and federal law enforcement entities.
In 2008, he was transferred again to oversee patrol operations in the county, working as both a district and operational commander, until he was promoted to major when Berry took office in 2014.
“As I was provided opportunities, I tried to make the best of them and show people that I was an asset in whatever assignment you were asking me to do,” Becker said of his career. “… Leaving here is very, very bittersweet, [but] knowing that I’m staying local and staying in law enforcement helps ease that a little bit.”
“I’m very fortunate to feel like I’ve had a part of making this agency the great agency that it is,” he added, “and I anticipate it continuing to grow.”
On Tuesday, the sheriff’s office honored Becker’s career with a special lunch celebration after a staff meeting, a goodbye to a role model and friend to many.
“Our loss here at the sheriff’s office will definitely be the La Plata town police’s gain,” said Berry. “… He will serve Chief [Carl] Schinner very well.”
“Major Chris Becker is, and always will be, a part of the Charles County Sheriff’s Office family.” he continued. “He will be missed.”
Schinner is happy to have him on board.
“Major Becker will bring to the La Plata Police Department 30 years of experience as a law enforcement professional,” Schinner said. “As the agency continues to grow in the number of sworn officers and expands its specializations, Major Becker’s experience will accentuate a talented team who provide La Plata citizens and business owners a high quality of professional service.”
Maj. Chris Becker with Skylah Brown, 4, as they celebrated National Night Out at the Sheffield neighborhood on Aug. 2, 2016.
Sheriff Troy Berry (D) presented Maj. Chris Becker with his retirement badge after a lunch celebration on April 25, a thank you for his 30 years of service to the Charles County Sheriff’s Office.