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Chad Stahl


Chad joined the Lake Area Tech team in March 2023 as a Law Enforcement adjunct instructor. In July 2023, he became a full-time instructor and department supervisor. Chad is a graduate of Mitchell High School in Mitchell, SD, and completed his Associate Degree in Criminal Justice through Eastern Gateway Community College.

Chad was born in Watertown and was raised in Mitchell where he graduated from Mitchell High School. He eventually returned to Watertown and began his career in Law Enforcement as a Patrol Officer with the Watertown Police Department in July of 2003. In January of 2007, Chad became a Corporal and assisted with the supervision of a Patrol Division squad. In September of 2007, he was assigned to the Detective Division as a Narcotics Investigator. Chad was promoted to Sergeant in May of 2013 where he supervised a Patrol Division Squad. In July of 2014, he returned to the Detective Division where he supervised a squad of detectives. While in the Detective Division, Chad took part in hundreds of investigations ranging from drug distribution and property crimes, to conducting and supervising crimes against people to include sexual assault and homicide investigations. He was also an integral part of a multi-year federal investigation named “Operation Black Widow”.

In April of 2021, Chad was promoted to Patrol Captain. In May 2023, he retired from the police department.

He has served as a Codington County Drug Court Team member, certified Drug Recognition Expert, Defensive Tactics Instructor, Team Leader on the SWAT team and Crime Scene Team Leader.

Throughout his career Chad has worked tirelessly to make our community a safe place to live, work and raise a family. For his efforts, he is a two-time Watertown Police Department Officer of the year, two-time VFW Post No. 750 Officer of the Year, Optimist Club Officer of the year and Watertown Police Department Supervisor of the Year.

In his free time, Chad enjoys lifting weights, playing softball, golfing and spending time outdoors. Chad has also spent many years coaching youth sports where he enjoyed encouraging and showing them how they can work hard and achieve their goals while still having fun.

Chad Stahl
Law Enforcement Instructor