Chief Turner poses with several members of the patrol division following the announcement she would be leading the department.

One of Tipton County’s most notable law enforcement officers is returning.

On a 5-1 vote Tuesday, the City of Covington hired Donna Turner as its next police chief. Alderman John Edwards was the only nay vote.

Turner, who has a storied career which spans several decades, earned her B.S. in Criminal Justice from UT-Martin in 1997 and her masters in Criminal Justice – Law Enforcement Administration from the University of Memphis in 2004. She has worked for the Martin and Jackson police departments, Madison County Sheriff’s Office, was a field agent with the Tennessee Bureau of Investigations, and most recently led the Tennessee Department of Corrections Office of Investigations and Conduct.


Prior to that, Turner was the deputy chief for the Tipton County Sheriff’s Office for more than a decade under Sheriff Pancho Chumley.

Turner is a seasoned investigator who is also a graduate of the FBI Academy.

She has broken many barriers during her law enforcement career and is also the first woman to be police chief in Covington.

The vacancy she fills was left when former chief Larry Lindsey abruptly resigned the week after Thanksgiving.

The other four finalists were CPD interim chief Jack Howell, a captain with the department; former Millington police chief Mark Dunbar; Frank Winston and John Brooks. As is the usual procedure for the City of Covington, an independent review board conducted interviews and scored candidates.

Mayor Justin Hanson said, “In addition to a stellar assessment performance and interview, I and many of the aldermen received tremendous public input about chief-elect Turner. Her years of experience in law enforcement, along with her familiar face, will be a perfect fit for the Covington Police Department. We are confident that Chief Turner will be immediately effective in preventing, deterring, and solving crime in Covington while promoting the highest standards of professionalism and efficiency within the ranks of the department to serve the public.”

Chief Turner will begin in her new role in the coming weeks.

Echo Day
Author: Echo Day

Echo Day is an award-winning journalist, photographer and designer. She is currently The Leader's managing editor.