Adkins has been with the Kentucky Department of Corrections for 13 years, having held the ranks of Correctional Sergeant, Lieutenant and Captain, as well as internal Affairs Captain. He began his career in 2003 as a Correctional Officer at KCIW and was promoted to sergeant two years later. In this role, he also took on the role of institutional armorer, responsible for maintaining monthly inventories and maintenance of all weapons and ammunition. He also became the institution's Firearms Instructor, responsible for assisting in annual firing range requalification for staff. He was then promoted to Lieutenant, conducting adjustment committee hearings and assisting in shift supervision.
In 2009, he was promoted to Captain and was responsible for dayshift supervision. In 2012, he was reassigned as the Internal Affairs Officer for the institution. As the Internal Affairs Captain, he conducted investigations into illegal activities of inmates and staff. He also served as the primary Prison Rape Elimination Act (PREA) Investigator and was responsible for training new PREA investigators at KCIW.