The current temporary chief constable for Devon and Cornwall will take the top spot permanently.

Shaun Sawyer has filled the role on a temporary basis since the departure of Stephen Otter in March 2012, he has also served as the served as the force's deputy chief constable

The decision is subject to a confirmation hearing by a police and crime panel in early February.

There were five applicants who went forward to a selection and interview panel led by the new Police and Crime Commissioner Tony Hogg.

Mr Hogg said: “We were extremely pleased by the quality of all the candidates. It’s testament to the high regard in which the Devon and Cornwall force is held nationwide. A rigorous, transparent and very fair interview process culminated in a unanimous decision by the five strong panel. Shaun Sawyer impressed us tremendously with his clear vision for the future of policing in this area, and I’m very much looking forward to working closely with him.”

“Shaun Sawyer and I have already built an excellent working relationship and i’m confident that will develop further in the future with our joint aim of cutting crime. Shaun has already made some good progress in this regard since taking temporary charge nearly a year ago.”

Shaun Sawyer began his police career in 1986, initially as a uniformed officer in central London. More recently he was the Metropolitan Police lead for covert operations and intelligence (2005-2007), lead for violent crime and geographic policing in South West London (2007-2008) and in 2008 was appointed as Head of Counter terrorism within Scotland Yard. He joined the Devon and Cornwall force as Deputy Chief Constable in April 2010.

He’s now relishing his new role: “I am delighted to have been selected at this stage to be the new chief constable, and look forward to continue working with the police and crime commissioner, Tony Hogg, to provide the best possible policing service across the peninsula. I would like to say how privileged I feel to have been given the opportunity to continue to lead such a dedicated and skilled workforce.”

“This is an excellent force and I am proud to have served as both deputy chief constable and temporary chief constable over the past few years.”

“The force still faces many challenges over the next few years, but I am confident that through the ongoing hard work and dedication of my staff and officers we can continue to drive down crime, protect vulnerable people and provide an excellent policing service to people across Devon, Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly.”