NewsPublic Affairs / October 10, 2019

Merritt Invites Democrat To Serve As IMPD Chief If Elected

Merritt Invites Democrat To Serve As IMPD Chief If Elected

Republican State Sen. Jim Merritt publicly invited former IMPD deputy chief Bill Benjamin to serve as chief of police if elected mayor.

Erica Irish/WFYI

Republican mayoral candidate State Sen. Jim Merritt publicly invited former Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department Deputy Chief Bill Benjamin to serve as police chief if Merritt is elected mayor Thursday.

Benjamin ran as a Democratic candidate for Marion County Sheriff in 2018. Merritt says crime reduction is not a partisan problem and believes Benjamin is the right person for the job.

“I am asking this prominent Democrat to join us because these issues are bigger than party," Merritt says. "Whether or not he votes for me, he is the right person to serve our city.”

Merritt has not formally invited Benjamin to serve as chief under his administration, nor has he talked adminstrative policies with him.

Benjamin is currently chief of security at Tindley Schools. He declined to comment on the invitation Thursday, but says he will give a public response Tuesday.

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