Command and Staff Program

Lt. Christopher Couty, Iberville Parish Sheriff’s Office, ~ 225-802-2500

Born in New Orleans, Christopher Couty moved to Baton Rouge at an early age and graduated from Broadmoor High School. He was the son of the Louisiana State Commissioner of Labor. Chris studied at Southwest Mississippi Community College before completing his B.S. in Business Administration from the University of Phoenix. Chris has well over 20 years full time experience in law enforcement. has worked in corrections, communications, and emergency medicine, and is the proud father of five, four of which are currently active duty or have prior military service. He has also served as an adjunct instructor with the United States Department of Transportation’s “Transportation Safety Institute”, and has published several articles in scholarly publications, as well as being a former contributor to American Police Beat magazine.

Captain Christopher “Chris” Fontenot, Ascension Parish Sheriff’s Office,  ~ 225.362.8343

• Christopher (Chris) Joseph Fontenot
• Ascension Parish Sheriff’s Office serving since 1992
• Served in the capacity of Corrections Officer, East and West Ascension Patrolman, Narcotics Detective, Criminal Investigations Detective, East and West
Ascension Patrol Sergeant, Patrol Lieutenant, Supervisor of a Special Assignment/ Street Crimes Unit and currently as the Supervisor of Property and
Financial Crimes with the rank of Captain.
• Committed to providing a positive work atmosphere that flourishes by individual success and member ownership.
• 1991 Gonzales Volunteer Fire Department “Fireman of the Year
• 1996 Knights of Columbus Council 2657 & VFW Deputy of the Year
• 2007 Knights of Columbus Council 1087 Deputy of the Year
• 2019 Promoted to the Rank of Captain
• 2019 Graduate of the Leadership Ascension Program.
• Married to Debbie Munson Fontenot of St. Amant where they reside with three children, Haley 21, Carley 19 and Cade 12

Captain Shawn Winchester, Ascension Parish Sheriff’s Office, ~ 225.268.5016

My name is Shawn Winchester and I am 47 years old. I am married to Tiffiny Mitchell-Winchester for 3 years and have one daughter Courtney Winchester, 26 years old and two grandchildren who are the love of my life Erin, 8 years old and Eason, 21 months old. I am employed with Ascension Parish Sheriff Office for 23 years in which all of them has been in Corrections. I have worked in many capacities from Shift to Pre-Trial, Classification/Records, and now to Captain/Assistant Warden. I am also the POST Corrections Instructor along with Red Cross First Aid, CPR, & AED Instructor for my department. I am also the contact person for the AFIS. I really enjoyed helping people in our parish.
In my spare time I love to travel and spend time with my family and friends and watching sports. I have started to take control over my health by eating healthier and being more active on a daily basis. I have turned part of my garage into a home gym. One of my proudest accomplishment was to attend school for 12 years without missing a day of school.

Lt. Lawrence (Larry) Dearing, Foley PD, ~ 251-424-8033

I was born in Little Rock, Arkansas. As a child, my parents were missionaries and I lived in Guatemala, Central America. I enlisted the Army Reserve in 1987 at the age of 17 with an MOS in Communications. I graduated from Sylvan Hills High School in Sherwood, Arkansas in 1988 and in 1990 I attended college at John Brown University in Siloam Springs, Arkansas. In 1995 I enlisted in the Arkansas Army National Guard with a Communications Unit where I remained until my EOS in 2006. I worked in my family’s construction equipment business from my teenage years until my father sold the business in 2000. I moved to Northwest Arkansas where I worked as the Service Manager of a Caterpillar construction equipment dealer until I joined the Fayetteville, Arkansas Police Department in 2002. In 2008 I moved to Foley, Alabama after accepting employment with the Foley Police Department. During my career with Foley, I began in patrol and then moved to Narcotics in 2009.

I worked Narcotics attached to the Baldwin County Drug Task Force until 2011 when I joined the Foley Police K9 Unit. In 2012 I became the Police Department’s Juvenile Detective and Evidence Custodian. In 2013 I promoted to the rank Corporal and transferred to the Patrol Division where I assumed an acting Sergeant role for a shift Sergeant who was on military deployment. In 2015 I transferred back to Narcotics and joined the Federal Bureau of Investigation Safe Streets Task Force in Mobile, Alabama. I promoted to the rank of Sergeant in 2017 and transferred back to the Patrol Division as a shift Sergeant, maintaining my duties and my security clearance with the FBI. In 2018 I began a local Narcotics Unit in the Foley Police Department, rotating and training Patrol Officers in interdiction, street drugs, undercover operations and task force and gang initiatives. In 2020 I transferred back to the Criminal Investigations Division as the Sergeant and later in September, 2020 I promoted to the rank of Lieutenant, assuming command of the Foley Police Department Criminal Investigations Division.

I am married to my wife, Tamaira, a paralegal for a local Attorney, and together we have two daughters: Elizabeth, 26, who lives in Daphne, Alabama and works for the FBI in the Mobile Field Office, and Ava, 24, who lives in Denver, Colorado and works in real estate. I am extremely proud of my family and of my careers in service, both military and Law Enforcement.

Deputy Chief of Police Kevin Carnley, Foley PD, ~ 251-424-8161

Deputy Chief Kevin A. Carnley was born in Fairhope, Alabama in 1975. He attended Baldwin County Public School in Fairhope and graduated from Fairhope High School in 1995. He began public service in 1997 as a volunteer firefighter with the Fairhope Volunteer Fire Department. In July 1999, he started his career in Law Enforcement as a Communication Officer for the City of Foley Police Department. The following year he was promoted to Patrolman and attended the South West Alabama Police Academy.

As a patrolman, he served in various capacities, such as a Narcotics Enforcement Team member, Field Training Officer, and Canine Handler. As a Canine Handler, he conducted 25 successful tracks and had over 100 canine-related arrests. He earned an Exceptional Service Award for his job performance.

He was promoted to corporal in 2007 and served as a first-line patrol supervisor and supervisor of the Canine Unit until being assigned to the Professional Development Unit in 2009. While assigned to the Professional Development Unit, he researched, developed, instructed, scheduled, and tracked training of all police department employees. He was awarded the Exceptional Service Award for his performance as it directly contributed to the professionalism of the department’s ninety-plus employees.

In 2013, he was promoted to the rank of sergeant and assigned to the Patrol Division. He was again awarded an Exceptional Service Award for the exceptional manner he performed as a Patrol Sergeant.

In 2017 he was promoted to the rank of lieutenant and was assigned to Patrol Division Commander. As Lieutenant of Patrol, he is responsible for managing the purchase and maintenance of the department’s fleet within the budget and the city’s purchasing procedure. He was again awarded an Exceptional Service Award for exceptional Leadership as the Patrol Commander.

In 2020, he was promoted to the rank of Deputy Chief, Chief of Staff, and currently oversees the department’s four-division (Patrol, Criminal Investigation, Community Safety, Admin/Corrections) and the annual budget.

Chief Carnley has attended numerous specialized schools related to his various assignments and career to include Field Training Officer, FBI Certified Instructor, K9 Handler, K9 Unit Management Course, Less Lethal Instructor, Taser Instructor, Reality Based Training Instructor, National Incident Management System (NIMS), Southeastern Leadership Executive Development (SLEDS), and also attended numerous hours in multiple leadership training classes. Over the last 22 years, Chief Carnley has received nearly 2000 hours in various police-related training.

Chief Carnley has been recognized throughout his career for his work and dedication to the Foley Police Department. He was named Officer of the Year in 2008. He has been awarded the K9 Ribbon, Law Enforcement Instructor Ribbon, Pistol Expert Ribbon, and the Major Felony Arrest Award.

Throughout his years with the police department, he has been involved in the research and implementation of new technologies such as in-car camera systems, less-lethal options, body cameras, and radio systems. He has also been involved in the writing of various department policies and procedures.

Chief Carnley currently serves as the Chairman of the Local Emergency Preparedness Committee (LEPC) for Baldwin County.

Chief Carnley and his wife Chrissy have been married for 14 years and have a 5-year-old son. They live in the Barnwell Community and attend St. Margret of Scotland Catholic Church in Foley.

Captain Tommy “Chris” Weeks, Pascagoula PD, ~ 228-217-7419

I was born in Ft. Meyers, FL, and moved to Pascagoula, MS at an early age. I graduated from Pascagoula High School in 1988 and enlisted in the United States Marine Corps in 1989. I served as a nuclear weapons security guard at NSB Kings Bay and an infantry team leader with BLT 1/6 at Camp Lejuene, NC. I graduated from the Harrison County Law Enforcement Training Academy in 1995. I was subsequently hired by the Moss Point Police Department in 1997.
While employed at the MPPD, I served as a Patrolman, Traffic/DUI Officer, K9 Handler/Interdiction, Field Training Officer, and Firearms Instructor. I was promoted to Sergeant and Lieutenant during my tenure. In 2008, I took a job with the Pascagoula Police Department as a Patrolman.

While serving as a Patrolman, I was given additional responsibilities as an FTO. I transferred to the Special Response Team, which was responsible for the service of felony warrants and crime suppression. This unit migrated into working towards the department’s first state accreditation, which was accomplished in seven months. I was promoted to Sergeant and served as a Patrol Sergeant. The department decided to pursue national-level accreditation through CALEA and I was appointed as the Accreditation Manager where we received our initial accreditation and a re-accreditation. In 2020, I was promoted to Captain as the Director of Professional Standards.

As the Director of Professional Standards, I am responsible for Accreditation, Training, Internal Affairs, Warrants, and the Marine Patrol. I serve as an instructor in different disciplines for the agency and I am currently the Commander of the department’s SWAT Team.

Lt. Mitchell Lofton, Pascagoula PD, ~ 228-382-2049

Lt. Mitchell Lofton is a lifelong resident of Jackson County, Mississippi, and has been married to his wife, Martha Lofton, for twelve years. Mitchell comes from a law enforcement family and enjoys hunting and fishing. He has served the City of Pascagoula for the past seventeen years.

Mitchell began his career as a Detention Officer in the Pascagoula Municipal Jail in April of 2005. In 2006, he was promoted to Patrolman and attended the Mississippi Law Enforcement Officers’ Training Academy (MLEOTA) Class #216. As a patrolman, he quickly became a Field Training Officer and has been involved in the training of numerous officers. In 2008, He was selected to serve on the Special Response Team (SRT), which was tasked with crime suppression either by covert operations or high visibility proactive patrols. The team was also tasked with executing Search and Arrest Warrants.
In April of 2012, he was assigned to the Accreditation Team tasked with preparing the department for accreditation through the Mississippi Law Enforcement Accreditation Commission. After completing the accreditation process, he was reassigned to the Warrants Division in 2013.
In October of 2013, he was promoted to Sergeant and reassigned to the Patrol Division. He became a Crisis Negotiator in 2014 and attended the Mississippi Law Enforcement Command College in 2019.

In 2020, he was promoted to Lieutenant and assigned to the Professional Standards Division as the Accreditation Manager. He is certified by NITV Federal Services as an examiner in Computer Voice Stress Analysis (CVSA). He is a Field Training Officer Instructor, Police Traffic RADAR/LIDAR Instructor, and NARCAN Instructor. He also manages the departments’ community service program and serves on the Marine Patrol Unit.

Deputy Chief Joe Don Cunningham, Pascagoula PD, ~ 228-219-6704

Deputy Chief Cunningham is a 1983 graduate from Moss Point High School in Mississippi. He started his law enforcement career as a Police Dispatcher in 1986. In 1987 he became a certified Police Officer. During his career, he has worked as a Dispatcher, Patrol Officer, Detective, Detective Sergeant, Patrol Sergeant, Patrol Lieutenant, and Deputy Chief of Police. As the Deputy Chief, he is responsible for the day to day operation of the Pascagoula Police Department. He is also responsible for the 57 sworn and 25 civilian employees of the agency.

During Deputy Chief Cunningham’s career, he has been the lead detective on numerous high profile case. He has also worked with the Federal Bureau of Investigations Safe Street Task Force, U.S. Customs Blue Lighting Task Force, U.S. Marshal’s, Drug Enforcement Administration, along with State and Local agency task forces. He has held numerous certifications throughout his career and has attended numerous training and leadership courses.

Deputy Chief Cunningham’s main focus and responsibility are the employees under his command and the people who live and travel to the City of Pascagoula. Deputy Chief Cunningham lives in the City of Pascagoula, which he serves. He has ten children and four step children. He is married to Tobie Cunningham and hopes to follow in his late father Chief Jack Cunningham’s, footsteps by becoming Chief of Police