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ALEA names first woman ever to AL head of highway patrol

Published: Jan. 24, 2018 at 1:21 AM CST|Updated: Jan. 24, 2018 at 12:40 PM CST
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MONTGOMERY, AL (WSFA) - History has been made in the Alabama Law Enforcement Agency.

Tuesday, Chief Susanna Capps became the first woman to ever be named the head of Alabama Highway Patrol, according to ALEA officials.

According to ALEA, Capps is currently 1 of 19 female Troopers in the state and previously served as Active Chief of Alabama Highway Patrol for the past nine months. She is in her 21st year with ALEA.

"My dad was chief deputy sheriff of Suffolk County, N.Y. (her hometown),  and law enforcement had always interested me, but I wasn't aware of that many women in the field," said Chief Capps. "(Now retired) Cpl. Pam Stirling believed I could handle the physical and mental aspects of it."

Capps relocated to Alabama with her family while she was 15, according to ALEA. She began her law enforcement career in 1994 as an officer with the Phenix City Police Department, where ALEA officials say she served about two years.

Officials say she changed her course of career to work with ALEA after working a fatal crash with a State Trooper, while she was still a member of Phenix City PD.

Now in her new position, Capps doesn't plan on treating it like it's new. Rather, she just has one priority.

"You either want to do this or you don't. And if you are serious – and want to be taken seriously – you do what it takes to get there," said Capps. "I don't come to work every day with a chip on my shoulder or thinking I have to prove myself every day. I just come to work, and I do my job."

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