A Message from the Chief...


Greetings, Elizabeth City


It is an honor to be a member of the “Harbor of Hospitality” community.  Please know that the Men and Women of the Elizabeth City Police Department strive to meet the highest ethical and professional standards in police service; our Department is committed to providing top quality law enforcement services 24 hours a day; 7 days a week. 

Let me start by telling you a little about myself. I am a native of Halifax County, NC, and I began my law enforcement career in September of 2001 with the Halifax County Sheriff’s Office. I also worked for the Northampton County Sheriff’s Office as a School Resource Officer for Northampton County High School East. In 2006, I joined the Weldon Police Department, where I served for 12 years, eventually becoming Chief of Police. In August 2018, I joined the Elizabeth City Police Department as the Deputy Chief of Police. When I was recently presented with the opportunity to serve as Interim Chief of Police for Elizabeth City, I gladly accepted the position. This city is filled to the brim with beauty, charm and a strong sense of community involvement and I am delighted to be a part of it. 

I am glad you have decided to visit our Department’s website. The Elizabeth City Police Department has many community policing initiatives that we offer that are aimed at developing and enhancing collaboration with citizens, youth, neighborhoods and community stakeholders. As your Chief of Police, I am committed to creating innovative approaches to delivering excellent police services in a fair, equitable, humane and compassionate manner. Our police officers adhere to a policy-structure-law approach and are guided by the core values of integrity, honesty, responsibility, professionalism, fairness, and respect.  Please know that we are a dedicated law enforcement agency which hires professional members who demonstrate the highest standards of performance, advocates for best practices in policing, ensures accountability, and promotes dignity and respect for every citizen.   In my new role as Chief, I intend to forge new community partnerships and explore new ideas and ways to connect and communicate with community stakeholders to ensure we stay informed of community needs.

Thank you for taking the time to read this message, and I look forward to connecting with you in the near future.   I hope you will take a moment to browse through the website to learn more about the services we provide.     




James E. Avens Jr.

Interim Chief of Police