Sheriff Napoleon served in Michigan, which includes Detroit, for more than a decade, unsuccessfully running for mayor of the city

WEST BLOOMFIELD, Mich – Benny Napoleon, the Wayne County Michigan Sheriff and former Detroit Police Department who ran unsuccessfully for the city’s mayor, died Thursday. He was 65 years old

Current Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan confirmed the death on Twitter Sheriff Napoleon had been hospitalized in Detroit for weeks with Covid-19 complications

He joined the Detroit Police Department in 1975 and rose to serve as police chief from 1998 to 2001 when he retired from the department, The Detroit Free Press reported

Sheriff Napoleon, a Democrat, became deputy general manager of Wayne County, where Detroit is located, in 2004 and was appointed county sheriff in 2009. He retained that position after winning the 2012, 2016 and 2020 elections

Gov Michigan’s Gretchen Whitmer was among those to pay tribute to Sheriff Napoleon Thursday. “Sheriff Napoleon’s love for the people he served has been returned many times over,” she said in a statement. “His quick laugh, ardent partnership, and frankness I will miss most advice ”

Benny N Napoleon was born in Detroit in 1955, one of seven children to Harry and Betty Napoleon, the Detroit News reported. His father was a minister

He attended Cass Technical High School, a public school in the city, and later earned degrees from the University of Detroit Mercy and Detroit College of Law

He ran for Detroit Mayor in a crowded peloton in 2013, at a time when the job was largely considered toothless because the city’s finances were in the hands of a bankruptcy judge

“If we are to win this thing, we have to be outside knocking on doors every day of the week,” he said to the volunteers at the time,

He was the top voter among more than a dozen candidates in the main vote, but faced a tough challenge from Mr. Duggan, a former executive director of Detroit Medical Center who ran an enrollment campaign

This November, Mr. Duggan defeated Sheriff Napoleon by a wide margin and became the first white mayor in four decades of a city where more than 80 percent of the population were African American

Sheriff Napoleon, who was previously married to Lisa Cunningham, is survived by his mother Betty (84) his daughter Tiffani Jackson; and his brother, Hilton Napoleon, the police chief of Highland Park, Mich, a township that borders Detroit, and it wasn’t immediately clear how many of his six siblings survived him

In April, Sheriff Napoleon wrote an emotional article for a local news site about watching his brother and other relatives become infected with the coronavirus

“If you’ve suffered from the symptoms of Covid-19 or a family member has encountered the brutal virus, you know how devastating it can be,” he wrote in the online newspaper The River Rouge. “So imagine before, several family members are simultaneously affected by the same malignant disease ”

Sheriff Napoleon tested positive for Covid-19 on November 19 and was hospitalized the next day a week later, he was ventilated

On Sunday, Ms. Jackson wrote on her father’s Facebook page that his condition was improving, but she also said that Covid-19 “is such a complex virus, with many ups and downs, and the case my father was no different ”

Michigan lieutenant governor Garlin Gilchrist II said on Twitter the death of Sheriff Napoleon was an “enormous loss” for the state, Wayne County and Detroit

“Benny has been a pillar in the ward – an exemplary civil servant who sets an example with conscientious words and selfless service,” said Mr. Gilchrist wrote, “He offered himself as a mentor at every opportunity so that young leaders like me can be, believe in, and become our greatest selves”

Benny Napoleon

World News – USA – Benny Napoleon, Sheriff of Michigan and former Police Chief of Detroit, dies at the age of 65