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Michigan Sheriff's Association

Wayne County

Sheriff: Sheriff Benny Napoleon

Address: 4747 Woodward Ave.
Detroit, MI 48201

Telephone: 313-224-2222


Benny N. Napoleon was educated in the Detroit Public School system and graduated from Cass Technical High School. He joined the Detroit Police Department in 1975 as a trainee police officer and was admitted to the Detroit Police Academy in June of 1975. He served the Detroit Police Department in many patrol, investigative, undercover and administrative capacities. He began his career walking a beat in the Second (Vernor) Precinct. He quickly rose through the ranks of the police department, being promoted to sergeant in 1983; to lieutenant in 1985; to inspector in 1987; to commander in 1993; to deputy chief in 1994; to assistant chief in 1995; and was appointed Chief of Police by the Honorable Mayor Dennis W. Archer in 1998.
After more than 26 years of distinguished service, Chief Napoleon retired from the Detroit Police Department in 2001. In 2004, Napoleon was named Assistant Wayne County Executive to help facilitate the administration of the nation’s 13th largest county. Napoleon served in that role until his appointment as Wayne County Sheriff in July 2009. He won re-election by 74 percent margin in 2012 to solidify his four-year term.
The Sheriff has implemented numerous initiatives that are reaping exponential results for the agency. Sheriff Napoleon expanded the Electronic Monitoring program to more than 500 tether participants a day generating an annual cost-savings of $21.8 million. He realigned Jail Food Service staffing which is expected to reduce costs approximately $800,000 annually. He also reinstituted the Jailer’s Training Academy to spearhead the aggressive hiring needed to curtail thousands of hours of overtime accrued each week due to court mandated staffing levels. And, he effectively reduced daily inmate populations to levels predating his tenure by utilizing alternative incarceration options.
Napoleon continues to participate in the national dialogue as an expert panelist on judicial and law enforcement reform. For more than a decade he has been engaged and involved with Fight Crime: Invest in Kids. He has also participated most recently in the NAACP Forum Race and Politics in America; Congressional Black Caucus’ Symposium In Pursuit of Policing and Criminal Justice Reform; and the League of Women Voters Policing in the 21st Century.
Napoleon earned his Associate’s Degree in Law Enforcement, Cum Laude, from Mercy College of Detroit in 1980; his B.A. in Criminal Justice, Cum Laude, from Mercy College of Detroit in 1982; and his Juris Doctor Degree from Michigan State University College of Law in 1986. He is also a graduate of the FBI National Academy; the United States Secret Service Dignitary Protection School; the Northwestern University School of Police Staff and Command; the Aresty Institute of Executive Development at the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania and Harvard University, Kennedy School of Government, Executive Education in which he was awarded a certificate of completion for the Senior Executives in State and Local Government Program, July 2011. He is also a member of the State Bar of Michigan and has been licensed to practice law since 1987.