(WXYZ) - Wayne County Sheriff Benny Napoleon says he's up for the challenge of running the City of Detroit.
Napoleon told 7 Action News that he's not giving up his post as sheriff while he runs for mayor. Sheriff Napoleon says he decided to run for mayor at the urging of Detroit's residents.
Before becoming the sheriff of Wayne County, Napoleon spent 26 years with the Detroit Police Department. He was Detroit's police chief for three of those years. He says public safety and crime will be his number one priority.
"Crime, jobs and economic development, blight and educating our children," Napoleon said, listing the major focus of his campaign.
He has been very vocal about his opposition to an emergency financial manager and is still against it, but says he will work with Detroit's EFM Kevyn Orr to solve the city's financial troubles if he's elected. The two have not met yet.
But Sheriff Napoleon's critics question his ability to run the city, because the sheriff's department continues to go over budget. Napoleon says it's because the number of inmates in the jail keeps increasing.
Polls indicate that Sheriff Napoleon and Mike Duggan would be the front runners in the mayoral race.
UAW President Bob King also attended the rally and stood on stage with the rest of the UAW officers and endorsed Napoleon for mayor.
When asked if he can beat Duggan for mayor, Napoleon answered: "Can I beat him? It's, can he beat me?"