Walter J. Hughes

Sergeant of Detectives

Dayton Police Department - 1910
Pages 26-27

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Sergeant of Detectives Walter J. Hughes is, without doubt, one of the busiest officers of the Dayton Police Department. It takes a big man with much patience, with a keen insight of human nature and a broad versatility to take charge of the police headquarters of any large city, and Chief Allaback is most fortunate in having Walter J. Hughes in this position. Sergeant Hughes has an executive ability which qualifies him in the best manner for the position he holds. He knows "crooks" and their ways and he understands his fellow men. He knows how to turn away with a relieved mind a complaining citizen who rely has no grievance. In fact, he knows how to fill the job.

In reply to the question, "to what qualities do you attribute your eminent success as a detective?" Common sense. If a detective will be just as patient, resourceful and persistent as the average merchant or manufacturer he will always prosper at his calling. There is no mystery in the business of revealing crime and getting at the criminals; just a plain task of assembling the facts and then working out a rational postulate. At times, nearly every case, big or little, seems barren of possibilities, and only confusion of dreary details, but a conscientious detective will keep on working. Each thief, no matter how experienced, will leave behind him physical tracks by which he can be followed.

The plain clothes men of the department who are under Sergeant Hughes all like and respect him, and his popularity is strongly in evidence throughout the entire membership of the police department. Sergeant Hughes is capably filling the position which he holds and is certainly a valuable man to the department.

Walter J. Hughes was born in Dayton on November 7, 1866. He received a liberal education in the public schools, and after leaving the schoolroom secured employment as a grocery clerk. He was thrifty and saving with the result that he was able to own a grocery of his own within a few years. He was engaged in this business when appointed patrolman on the police force, June 22, 1900. Such a shrewd and successful officer did he prove that in less than three years, February 1, 1903, he was promoted to the detective department. His leadership and skill again asserted itself with the result that he was promoted to Sergeant of the detective force the following October. Sergeant Hughes is affiliated with the A. O. H. He was married in early life to Miss Ella B. Varley. They have no children.

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