PHOENIX (3TV/CBS 5) -- Arizona Governor Doug Ducey announced Monday that director of the Arizona Department of Public Safety is stepping down. In a statement, Ducey said that Col. Frank Milstead will retire in April "after 35 years of distinguished law enforcement service to Arizona."

"For over 35 years, @Frank_Milstead has worn the uniform and put his life on the line to protect the safety of Arizonans. I’m grateful for his service and wish him the best," Ducey said on Twitter

Col. Frank Milstead

Two sources with first-hand knowledge told CBS 5 investigates on Saturday that Milstead made the decision himself in order to accept a position outside of Arizona state government. Before joining DPS in 2015, Milstead served for five years in the Mesa Police Department, and 25 years with the Phoenix Police Department.

Milstead released this following statement:

“For the last 35 years, I’ve had the honor of working with Arizona’s finest women and men in uniform, and because of that I consider myself one of the luckiest guys in public service,” said Col. Milstead. “I’m grateful to Governor Ducey for the honor and privilege to serve as DPS director, and I’m thrilled that my friend and colleague, Heston Silbert, will have the opportunity to lead this fine agency.”

Ducey said that  DPS Deputy Director Heston Silbert, who has served in the Arizona law enforcement for over 31 years, will succeed Milstead as DPS Director. Prior to his time with DPS, Silbert served with Phoenix and Mesa police departments. Silbert will serve as the new director of DPS starting on Apr. 4.

"Heston Silbert's commitment to Arizona spans beyond his courageous protection of public safety," he said. "With an innovative approach to management and accountability that has helped rebuild @Arizona_DPS. "I'm grateful to have him serve as director of the agency." 

Morgan Loew's hard-hitting investigations can be seen weekdays on CBS 5 News at 6:30 p.m. and 10 p.m.

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