South Carolina Department of Public Safety


March 18, 2015
Contact: Sgt. Mike Still, 803-530-7181


COLUMBIA – The South Carolina Department of Public Safety announced the 2014 State Transport Police (STP) Officers of the year in a March 17 ceremony. Seven men were recognized for exemplary work ethic and acts of bravery on the job.         

“We are proud of these men for their dedication to duty, which has resulted in safer roadways,” said SCDPS Director Leroy Smith. “They set the bar high – as it should be – for law enforcement standards, ethics and courage.”

State Transport Police Col. Leroy Taylor said:

“I look around this room and any one of you could be receiving this award. We are so proud to have each of you on Team DPS,” Taylor said.     

Those award recipients include:

District One: Lance Corporal Chiman Chan has served with the State Transport Police for five years. In 2014, Chan did a total of 898 inspections resulting in 727 violations. He is known as one of the first to volunteer for additional training.  He is originally from Lexington, SC. He and his wife, Jessica, have two sons, Owen and Ethan, and live in West Columbia, SC.


District Two: Senior Officer James Arnold has served with the State Transport Police for four years. Officer Arnold’s activity ranks among the top in the district, declaring 112 drivers and 134 vehicles in violation in 2014. He was in the Marine Corps and currently serves in the South Carolina Army National Guard. He has also served with the Laurens County Fire Department since 2008. He lives in Laurens, SC.


District Three: Senior Officer John Lollis has served with the State Transport Police for four years. Officer Lollis is described as being self-motivated and dedicated. His high activity numbers include 1,093 inspections for the year. He has 30 plus years of experience in the transportation industry. He and his wife, Denise, have two sons, Ty and Tanner, and live in Williamston, SC.


District Four: Senior Officer Stephen Holmes has served with the State Transport Police for four years. He was in the top two in his district for activity for nine out of 12 months in 2014, and was the number one officer in his district for seven of those nine months. He is a graduate of Newberry College and is originally from Chapin. He and his wife, Mary Beth, have one daughter, Harper, and live in Rock Hill, SC.


District Five: Senior Officer Charles Norton has served with the State Transport Police for five and a half years. He has taken the initiative to assume extra responsibilities including field training, basic skills instruction, firearms instruction and driving instruction.  In the last three years, he has trained five officers. He has 16 years of law enforcement experience with the Darlington County Sheriff’s Office. He and his wife, Samantha, have two daughters and one son and live in Darlington.


District Six: Officer First Class Michael Darby has served with the State Transport Police for two and a half years. In 2014, he cited 4,349 violations during his inspections.  He is a graduate of Appalachian State University and is originally from Portsmouth, VA. He and his wife, Audrey, live in Summerville and have one daughter, Caroline.


District Seven: Lance Corporal Robert Harman has served with the State Transport Police for five years. During 2014, officer Harman conducted 719 inspections; 430 of these were Level One and Level Two, during which he placed 167 vehicles out of service.  He also led the district in the number of fuel dye inspections completed for the year at 266. He is a graduate of the Citadel and is originally from Irmo. He and his wife, Kate, live in Bluffton.


Overall Winner STP Officer of the Year


Lance Corporal Charles "Chuck" Norton, District 5/Darlington, was named 2014 Overall STP Officer of the Year. L/Cpl. Norton began his career with the Department of Public Safety in 2010. His previous law enforcement experience includes employment with the Florence Police Department and Darlington County Sheriff’s Office, where he served as Lieutenant overseeing the Warrant Division and Training. L/Cpl. Norton is also a driving instructor, firearms instructor, field training officer and basic instructor. He lives in Darlington with his wife, Samantha, and children, Jordan, Brittany and Trey.


On December 4, 2014, Norton was driving his patrol vehicle on Pearl St. in Darlington County when he noticed two small children, a two-year-old boy and a six-year-old girl, heading into oncoming traffic. He immediately activated his blue lights and turned his vehicle sideways to block both lanes of traffic. He stepped out of his vehicle and the boy ran into his arms.  He then made sure the children were safely returned to their mother, who was vacuuming her car nearby and was unaware that her children had wandered off.


L/Cpl. Norton attends First Baptist Church in Darlington where he works with the youth program. He assists with activities at the Darlington High School athletic department.  



The South Carolina Department of Public Safety includes the Highway Patrol, State Transport Police, Bureau of Protective Services, Office of Highway Safety and Justice Programs, Immigration Enforcement Unit and the South Carolina Law Enforcement Officers Hall of Fame. Our mission is to ensure public safety by protecting and serving the people of South Carolina and its visitors.
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