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Capt. Erdel was born in Virginia and spent his formative years in Jacksonville, Fla. After graduating from high school, Capt. Erdel joined the U.S. Marine Corps as a military policeman and was stationed at Marine Corps Base Hawaii, Kaneohe Bay. While stationed in Hawaii, Capt. Erdel began studying for his bachelor’s degree in criminal justice administration at Chaminade University of Honolulu. Capt. Erdel’s duties included patrol, supervision and physical security inspector. After re-enlisting and being stationed at MCAS Beaufort, Capt. Erdel transferred to Park University, where he graduated Summa Cum Laude with a bachelor’s degree in Criminal Justice Administration. Capt. Erdel is currently pursuing a Master’s Degree in the field through Southern New Hampshire University’s distance learning program.
Upon leaving the Marine Corps as a Sergeant (E-5) and being hired by the Beaufort Police Department in late 2003, Capt. Erdel attended the South Carolina Criminal Justice Academy and received the distinguished graduate award. His experience at the Beaufort Police Department includes six years as a patrol officer and assistant patrol supervisor, and 10 years as an investigator and investigation division supervisor. He has received numerous awards, including the Exchange Club 2011 Officer of the Year, Commendable Service Award, and 2018 runner-up for the Rotary Club of Beaufort’s Jesse L. Altman Jr. Award for Excellence in Law Enforcement.
Capt. Erdel was promoted to his current role in February of 2019, where he oversees the department’s emergency preparedness efforts, as well as the administration of the department’s training, hiring and internal investigative functions. Capt. Erdel also serves as the department’s public information officer.