OXFORD — Interim Police Chief Michael Ward was sworn in Thursday night as Oxford’s permanent police chief at the Board of Selectmen meeting.

Ward will oversee seven full-time and four part-time officers.

The board unanimously accepted Town Manager Butch Asselin’s recommendation of the former lieutenant to lead the department.

The Oxford native succeeds Jon Tibbetts, a 23-year veteran of the department who stepped down March 29.

Ward, 53, has worked for the department for a decade, and as interim chief since Tibbetts’ departure.

Ward was promoted from an Oxford detective sergeant to a lieutenant in 2010. The Oxford native said at that time his goal was to someday become police chief.

He began working in law enforcement in 1987. He served as a corrections officer, dispatcher and reserve officer with the Androscoggin County Sheriff’s Office. In 1988, he became a full-time deputy with the department, serving as contract deputy for Poland from 1988 to 1990.

From 1998 to 2003, Ward worked for the Mechanic Falls Police Department as a sergeant.

After a brief stint as manager of the Poland Spring House, Ward returned to police work in 2005 as a reserve officer with the Androscoggin County Sheriff’s Office and Oxford Police Department.

He began working as a patrol officer with the Oxford Police Department in 2006, became the chief deputy of the Androscoggin County Sheriff’s Office and returned to Oxford in January 2009 to become a detective sergeant in charge of investigations in the newly created position.

Ward was one of three candidates for the position of Oxford County sheriff this year.

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