This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

LA MESA, Calif. — Walt Vasquez, a 29-year veteran of the San Diego Police Department who currently serves as its assistant chief, will take over as head of the La Mesa Police Department next month, officials announced Thursday.

Vasquez will be sworn in as the East County city’s top cop on April 6, filling a vacancy left by career LMPD lawman Ed Aceves, who retired in December after three years as chief.

The choice of Vasquez followed a “very thorough application process that attracted a wide range of candidates inside and out of the region,” according to La Mesa City Manager Dave Witt.

“I have every confidence that Mr. Vasquez is the most qualified candidate for La Mesa’s new chief and will provide the energy and professional commitment needed to be successful in his new role at La Mesa,” Witt said.

Vasquez began his career with the San Diego Police Department in September 1986 as a police recruit. In 1994, he was promoted to sergeant, then lieutenant in 1998 and captain in 2005.

In his current position, he oversees the SDPD Canine Unit, SWAT team, property room, information services, communications and the chief’s community advisory boards.

Download Fox 5 iPhone app  |  Download Fox 5 Android app