ESCONDIDO — Police Chief Ed Varso recently announced he is leaving the Escondido Police Department for Menifee at the end of the month.
Varso accepted a new position this month as the next police chief for the Riverside County city.
Varso’s last day with the Escondido Police Department is June 28 and he will be sworn in as the new Menifee police chief on June 30, assuming duty on July 5.
Varso started his career in 1997 with the Los Angeles Police Department before he was hired as a police officer in Escondido in 2001. He worked for the police department for 21 years, more than two of those as chief after being promoted in January 2020.
Varso lived in Escondido until early 2022, according to Teresa Collins, the city’s deputy director of communications. He is now a resident of Menifee.
“While I am excited for the opportunity to lead the Menifee Police Department, it is sad to say goodbye to Escondido,” Varso said in a statement provided by the city.
In the statement, Varso praised the Escondido Police Department.
“Day after day I witness a level of dedication and professionalism from all members of the Escondido Police Department that is second to none,” Varso said. “EPD is an outstanding police department and I know that it will continue to provide exceptional service for years to come.”
Varso was unavailable to speak to The Coast News before his departure.
City Manager Sean McGlynn will appoint an internal interim police chief from the department’s command staff. The city plans to conduct a nationwide search for a new chief.
“No one has been chosen yet,” Collins told The Coast News via email.
McGlynn called Varso’s departure a “loss” for the city of Escondido.
“We will work quickly to engage in a national recruitment to find a replacement who will continue to advance the mission and values of our organization,” McGlynn said.