Floyd Bonner sworn in as first elected African-American sheriff of Shelby County
MEMPHIS, TN (WMC) - Sheriff Floyd Bonner Jr. was sworn into office as the first elected African-American sheriff of Shelby County among a sea of who’s who in county and city government, including mayors Jim Strickland and Lee Harris.
He’s the 47th sheriff of Shelby County.
Bonner gave credit to his father, Floyd Bonner Sr., who twice ran for sheriff of Fayette County and lost.
Thursday, he got to watch his son fulfill his dream.
“That guy right there is the reason that I’m standing here,” Bonner Jr. said, talking about his father. “It’s hard to explain. A lot of work on the campaign trail. Worked over a year to get to this point."
Sheriff Bonner said he’s already hard at work, focusing on completing his support staff then turning his attention to the jail.
“We’ve gotta address our needs in the jail. We’re crowded at the jail, no if, ands, or buts about it,” he said.
Another priority for the sheriff is making sure there are enough deputies on the street. They are currently about 65 short.
“We’re getting ready to start the process now. The next class will probably start in January and then another class shortly thereafter,” Sheriff Bonner said.
Another major component of Bonner’s speech Thursday night was community involvement, specifically getting clergy involved in helping to lower juvenile crime.
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