She is the Top Cop of Licking County.
A sheriff’s deputy was awarded the title by the Licking County Prosecutors office.
Teresa Holmes is the first female officer to get the award. Her journey to a life of fighting crime actually begins with becoming a victim.
Deputy Teresa Holmes has been with the Licking County Sheriff’s office for 15 years, and is now being honored for that work.
“It’s an honor, I am humbled by it,” Holmes said of receiving the July award. But her recognition is not just for her work in her Licking County Cruiser, but also in the classroom, “Just changing the mindset that is where the teaching comes in.”
Since 2015, Holmes has taught at Central Ohio Technical College teaching several subjects, including one she knows all too well, domestic violence. It is part of COTC’s Ohio Peace Officer Basic Training program.
In 1999 she says her then-husband attacked her after an argument.
“He slammed my head this post we had on our front porch,” Holmes said. It happened again months later, this time he had a weapon, “He pointed a gun at me, and was threatening to kill me.”
She then left for good, taking her children with her.
“I will never forget the first time he became physical with me, and I will never forget the last time he became physical,” Holmes said. But it took her several months to leave her abuser, it’s one lesson she teachers her students today, “They need to understand that leaving is a process, you don’t just do it overnight.”
Upon leaving her then-husband, Holmes was inspired to join the sheriff’s office and help others, the same way she was once helped.
“I am not a victim, I am a survivor,” Holmes said.
Holmes is now remarried to another member of law enforcement.