LCPD would like to congratulate retired Sergeant/current Dispatcher Mark Hopkins on 35 years of service with our agency! Hopkins was recognized at the Lincoln City City Council meeting on Monday, June 10th. Hopkins comes from a law enforcement family: his grandfather, father, sister, and brother-in-law all worked in law enforcement, and when he graduated from high school he “wanted to be part of the revolution of new cops who were going to change the horrible image of ‘60s police excess.”
He enlisted in the US Army and served for four years as a Military Police Officer stationed in Vicenza, Italy, and embarked upon his career with LCPD in 1980 while we were still located at the NE 15th St Station, and remained a patrol officer until 1996 when he was promoted to Sergeant. Among his many duties, Hopkins was assigned to update and supervise the property room as it transitioned from a closet to a properly secure facility, and for a few years he was second-in-command while the position of lieutenant was left unfilled.
In addition, he was the staff advisor on the city’s first Traffic Safety Committee and served on Lincoln County’s Major Crash Team, he was the Accreditation Manager for the department, and a Union Steward who helped the city learn to be a fair employer. He even performed the pre-employment background check for long-time Det. Bud Lane. But his favorite “other duty as assigned” was being trained to be the department's first "McGruff the Crime Dog" and going to the schools.
Hopkins retired as the agency’s senior Sergeant in 2007, but continued to be involved in law enforcement as a Police Instructor at the Oregon Police Academy beginning in 2008. He still works there regularly, having assisted in training 90 classes of recruits roughly equaling 3,600 officers to date. In 2011, Hopkins returned to LCPD as a part-time 911 Dispatcher because he “needed medical insurance,” but also because he felt he still had useful training and knowledge that he could contribute to the community. In 2012, he became a full-time Dispatcher and maintained that position until recently, when he was able to transition back to a part-time position.
Throughout his prolific career, Hopkins has earned eight DPSST certifications in Police, Telecommunications, and Training disciplines, and his knowledge and experience is not only impressive but immeasurable. While some of the work was frustrating and horrific, he appreciates having the opportunity to have worked in law enforcement and help where ever he could. That innate desire to help those in need is also visible in his personal life, as he and his wife rescue dogs left behind by their owners and provide them with a loving home.
He is our historical guru and a fountain of knowledge regarding all things LCPD, and a highly appreciated asset to our department. Thank you, Mark, for truly dedicating your life to serving our community!