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Puckett retires as police chief

Anthony Puckett

Spring Hope’s former police chief has retired as the top cop in Nashville.

Anthony Puckett has spent three decades in law enforcement, serving as Nashville’s police chief since the summer of 2019.

Spring Hope Police Chief Nathan Gant replaced Puckett in Spring Hope.

“Congratulations to my colleague and long-time friend Chief Puckett on his retirement,” Gant said. “I am proud to have worked under him as he served the town of Spring Hope and alongside him as he led the Nashville Police Department.”

Gant said Puckett was influential law enforcement official.

“His leadership and mentorship have touched many lives, and I am among those who are truly grateful for this,” Gant said. “I know he will continue to do great things in his new endeavors and wish him all the best.”

Puckett not only served as chief in Spring Hope and Nashville but also in the Nash County Sheriff’s Office, Rocky Mount Police Department and Wake Forest Police Department. He began his law enforcement career in 1995.

Puckett holds degrees from N.C. Wesleyan University and the University of Central Missouri. He’s an adjunct professor at Nash Community College.   

Puckett replaced Tom Bashore, who stepped down in December 2018 to work for the N.C. Sheriffs’ Association. With Puckett’s retirement, J.T. Winstead II, a captain on the force, will serve as the town’s new police chief.

J.T. Winstead II

Winstead served as a deputy with the Nash County Sheriff’s Office for 16 years, joining the Nashville Police Department in 2019. Winstead, a Sandy Cross native, said he will seek to strengthen partnerships with the community and other law enforcement agencies, as well as continuously grow the department into an institution of advancement through knowledge and skill for all officers and personnel alike.

Winstead has been a member of the Coopers Volunteer Fire and Rescue Department for 22 years, including 10 years as president. 

He’s married with two children.