LINCOLNVILLE — A police officer who has worked in West Virginia and for three Lowcountry law enforcement agencies has been hired to patrol the northern Charleston County town of Lincolnville.

Kim Farst, 43, a graduate of state police academies in West Virginia and South Carolina, has 12 years of law enforcement experience. She was sworn in Wednesday at the rank of patrol officer, and will be the only salaried member of the Lincolnville Police Department, Mayor Tyrone Aiken said.

Farst replaces Richie Hill, formerly the town's only paid officer, who left earlier this year to work in Hanahan.

Farst will work at the Charleston County Sheriff's Office, which patrols Lincolnville. Her duties will include traffic enforcement, and a very important part of her job will be working with citizens to improve the community's crime watch program and its youth programs, Aiken said.

Aiken said Farst, whose salary starts at $28,000, was one of four people interviewed for the post by a special committee comprised of a town council member and citizens. The search for a new police officer began in July.

"I am excited about this and I know she will do well," Aiken said.

He said Farst came to South Carolina about a year ago after working in Clarksburg, W. Va., and has worked for the S.C. Department of Corrections, the State Ports Authority police and the Medical University of South Carolina's Public Safety.