Highest-ranking female officer in LCPD history retires Wednesday | Community Spirit
Captain Denise Hughes, the highest-ranking female officer in the Lake Charles Police Department’s history, will retire Wednesday, according to a news release from Lake Charles Chief Don Dixon.
Dixon said Hughes joined the police department in 1979 as a police dispatcher. She’ll officially retire Wednesday after 33 years of service.
Hughes graduated from Sulphur High School in 1976 and later attended McNeese State University. After being hired in Lake Charles, Hughes attended the 21st session of the Calcasieu Parish Training Academy where she was elected class president and graduated top of her class.
Hughes served in the patrol division, detective division and was a member of the multi-jurisdictional task force responsible for investigating all homicides in Calcasieu parish, Dixon said.
Dixon said Hughes finished her career as the department’s intelligence officer, while also supervising the community policing division and the department’s members of the combined anti-drug task force.
“During her tenure, Captain Hughes was decorated with numerous awards including ‘Officer of the Year’ by three different civic organizations, medal of merit, and twice selected as the department’s supervisor of the year," Dixon said. “Captain Hughes has been a trailblazer at the Lake Charles Police Department. She was the first female officer to be promoted to Lieutenant in 1996 and Captain in 2011.”
Hughes said upon retirement, she plans to, “continue to serve the citizens of Lake Charles through various charitable organizations.”