Florida Sheriffs Association Picks First Female Leader

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) — The Florida Sheriffs Association has elected its first female president, Highlands County Sheriff Susan Benton.

The association on Tuesday also named Miami-Dade County detective Oscar Plasencia as its deputy of the year.

Plascenia killed a murder suspect who had just fatally shot two of his partners in January 2011 as they tried to serve an arrest warrant.

Benton is the first woman to head the organization is its 118-year history. She succeeds Volusia County Sheriff Ben Johnson.

A grandmother, Benton has nearly 40 years of law enforcement experience and previously was the association’s vice president.

She was born and raised in Miami-Dade and followed in the footsteps of her great-grandfather, who was chief of police in St. Augustine in the 1920s.

(© Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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