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7 apply to be Bradenton deputy police chief

BRADENTON -- Seven candidates have applied to be the next Bradenton Police Department deputy chief.

Chief Michael Radzilowski received applications Tuesday from the city Human Resource Department from seven people applying for the No. 2 position with the BPD.

The position became available last week after the termination of former Deputy Chief Warren Merriman.

Merriman was fired after an investigation found he submitted hours for off-duty details he did not complete and had subordinates do home jobs and errands while on duty. He has pleaded not guilty to related criminal charges.

The candidates:

Steven A. Burns, recently retired colonel/chief deputy from Sarasota County Sheriff's Office after 35 years with the department.

Kevin R. Costello, president and chief executive officer of private security firm, Alert Security and Investigations, based in Kingston, N.Y. A 10-year veteran of the New York State Police.

Keith F. Davis, retired as Bradenton police deputy chief in 2013 after 25 years with the department.

William B. Fowler, captain of patrol operations for BPD and a former U.S. Air Force noncommissioned officer.

Michael A. Kessie, chief of the New College Police Department, a former deputy with Manatee County Sheriff's Office and former assistant police chief in Schererville, Ind.

Louis J. Leinhauser, a private investigator and owner of Big Bend Associates, and a former lieutenant colonel/assistant director of law enforcement, Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services; bureau chief of law enforcement for the Florida Division of Alcoholic Beverages and Tobacco; former detective with Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office; and a former detective with the Houston Police Department.

Jay Stephen Litschauer, a detective in the Manatee County Sheriff's Office's Crimes Against Children Unit. He retired as a sheriff's captain in February 2009, but returned to the agency as a reserve. In October 2010, he came out of retirement to be a detective.

Calls were made to all applicants but they either did not return calls or declined to comment.

Jessica De Leon, Herald law enforcement reporter, can be reached at 941-745-7049. You can follow her on Twitter @JDeLeon1012.

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