Crestview's new police chief will take over a city that is dealing with two open homicide cases in the last few months.

CRESTVIEW — City manager Tim Bolduc announced Wednesday that Ocoee Deputy Police Chief Stephen McCosker has been selected as the city of Crestview’s chief of police. Chief McCosker will assume his new role by September.

Monday evening, the two finalists, Deputy Chief McCosker and former Highlands County Sheriff’s Office Chief Deputy Mark Schrader, participated in a public meet-and-greet at Warriors Hall. Monday’s meeting was the final step in an exhaustive search that began several months ago when former CPD Chief Jamie Grant retired.

The nationwide search yielded 36 candidates from across the country and within the Police Department.

“My goal in this process and everything we are trying to do in the city is to move us forward and to provide a safe place to live, work and play,” Bolduc said.

Bolduc said McCosker impressed him, not only with his experience as a law enforcement professional, but also by his commitment to community outreach and service, and dedication to family and community.

Starting as a patrol officer in 1992, Chief McCosker brings an extensive, nearly 30-year law enforcement career to Crestview, including experience as a criminal justice instructor and adjunct professor of criminology at Valencia College.

He pioneered community outreach programs, including those focused on youth services, managed his agency’s accreditation process, implemented combined training with Ocoee’s other public safety agencies, ran emergency operations during multiple hurricanes, addressed homelessness issues, and established a safe driving course for all operators of city vehicles.

McCosker’s education includes two master’s degrees: One in criminal justice and another in public administration in addition to graduating from the FBI National Academy.

“My family and I are extremely excited about my being selected to serve the city of Crestview as the chief of police,” he said in a press release from the city. “I would like to thank the mayor, elected officials and city manager Bolduc for this opportunity.”