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City of Muskegon swears in new Director of Public Safety

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The City of Muskegon has a new Chief of Police, as Timothy Kozal Monday was officially sworn in as the city’s next Director of Public Safety.

Kozal had officially been offered the job on August 10th after a nationwide search that lasted months. According to a source on the search committee, ideal candidates were hard to come by, as the Director of Public Safety in Muskegon not only oversees the Police Department, but the Fire Department and building Inspections as well; and finding applicants who have experience in all three areas proved to be a challenge.

Kozal fits that bill, having previously run the police and fire departments in Manistee, Michigan as its Director of Public Safety before most recently serving at the Chief of Police in Ludington.

After being sworn in Monday, Kozal addressed those in attendance, including Muskegon Mayor Ken Johnson and Muskegon Interim City Manager LeighAnn Mikesell.

“I’m very proud, very humbled to be offered this position,” Kozal said. “I am really looking forward to today, my first day, and leading police, fire and building inspections.”

Kozal will have his work cut out for him. Despite the revitalization of Muskegon over the past few years, the city still ranks as one of Michigan’s more dangerous areas to live.

According to crime and statistics, he chance of becoming a victim of either violent or property crime in Muskegon is 1 in 30, and a crime rate that is higher than 94% of all other Michigan cities and towns of all sizes.