Criminal Investigations


The Criminal Investigation Division, known as CID, is divided into two sections: General Investigations and the Special Enforcement Team.

The General Investigations Section is supervised by Sgt. Don Howe and is staffed by five Investigators. The General Investigations Section provides investigative services of all serious crimes to include burglaries and major thefts, homicides, sexual battery cases, child abuse, robberies, and financial crimes, as well as support for the investigation of less serious crimes upon request or as needed. Typically, a preliminary investigation is completed by a Patrol Officer who completes an offense report. If the case is unable to be solved by the Patrol Officer or requires specialized or in-depth investigative services, the case is forwarded to CID. Cases are reviewed and solvability factors are considered. Cases are then assigned to a specific Investigator for follow-up.

The Special Enforcement Team is supervised by Sgt. Bryan Lewis and is staffed by three Investigators. The Special Enforcement Team provides proactive investigative services of narcotics violations, other “vice” crimes, gang violence, criminal intelligence, and other specialized investigations.

Investigators have the responsibility to search out the full facts of a situation, organize the facts into a logical summary of investigative data, and present this data to the State Attorney’s Office for criminal prosecution.

Lt. Ed DeCoste serves as the Division Commander of CID.  Lt. Decoste has served in various aspects of federal, state, and local law enforcement for the past 34+ years. He is responsible to ensure accomplishment of the mission assigned to the Division and for the overall conduct of all investigative activity.

cold cases title

 Who killed Melissa Howard?

On January 6, 2006, Melissa Howard was discovered by her daughter and two other subjects murdered in her Tiffot Court home in Crestview.  Howard, a mother of three, was 33 when she died from multiple stab wounds and blunt force trauma to the head. As of this date, Melissa’s killer has not been brought to justice.

Case Number: 06-43-OF
Lead Investigator: Lt. Jamie Grant
Contact: (850) 682-3544 or

 What happened to Kristy Rogers?

Kristy Rogers, age 16, disappeared on August 2, 1997.  She told her family she was spending the night with a girlfriend but instead stayed at her boyfriend’s residence.  The boyfriend, Mack Cawthorn, told police that Rogers departed his house on N. Lloyd St. at approximately 5AM heading to her residence on W. Walnut Ave.; however, she never arrived and has not been seen since.  In February 1998, a bag containing Rogers’ clothing was discovered in a wooded area near the current Tractor Supply plaza.

Case Number: 7790-97
Lead Investigator: Lt. Ed DeCoste
Contact: (850) 682-3544 or

If you have any information regarding the above cases, please contact the Crestview Police Department’s Criminal Investigations Division at (850) 682-3544.  You may also submit an anonymous tip regarding these cases, or any other crimes, to Emerald Coast Crime Stoppers.