Members of the Charles County Sheriff’s Office attended the State’s Attorney’s Office of Charles County’s Awards Ceremony on Friday, December 11 at the Greater Waldorf Jaycees. Three officers from the CCSO were honored at the event: retired Sergeant Jeff Bryant, Corporal Chris Shankster and Pfc. Vernon Warker. The Honorable Anthony B. Covington gave opening remarks and presented the awards.

Retired Sgt. Jeff Bryant was awarded the Special Service award for his professionalism and dedication to his position at the Charles County Court House, where he served as the Administrative Sergeant. He recently retired from the CCSO after more than 33 years of service.

Cpl. Chris Shankster, who is a detective in the major crimes unit, was named Detective of the Year. His passion, consistency in completing thorough investigations, and relentless pursuit of obtaining justice for victims were all noted. Cpl. Shankster has been with the CCSO for nearly 18 years.

Pfc. Vernon Warker was named Patrolman of the Year for many different reasons, but most of all for the courage he displayed in May of 2015. Pfc. Warker was the first on the scene of a house fire in Waldorf and learned that there was still one person trapped inside the house. Without hesitation or any protective gear, Pfc. Warker pushed open the locked front door, went inside, and dragged the man out to safety, saving his life.

“We have an excellent working relationship with the State’s Attorney’s Office and were honored to attend their event,” said Sheriff Troy Berry. “We are very proud of these officers as well as the rest of our employees. It is always great when they receive recognition from other organizations.”

Charles County Crime Solvers offers rewards of up to $1,000 for information that leads to the arrest or indictment of a person responsible for a crime in Charles County. Anyone with information about an unsolved crime or the location of a fugitive may contact Charles County Crime Solvers by calling 1-866-411-TIPS, texting CHARLES + the tip to CRIMES (274637) or submitting tips online at All individuals who provide tips through Crime Solvers will remain anonymous. Learn more at the CCSO’s website.

The Charles County Sheriff’s Office is a full-service law enforcement agency comprised of more than 600 police, corrections and civilian personnel responsible for protecting more than 150,000 residents. The CCSO was accredited by the Commission on the Accreditation of Law Enforcement Agencies (CALEA) in 2001 and has been designated as a CALEA Gold Standard of Excellence agency since 2011. Established in 1658, the CCSO is one of the oldest law enforcement agencies in the United States. For more information, visit      

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Janelle Love