- Associated Press - Wednesday, February 17, 2016

SALEM, Mass. (AP) - The first black sheriff in Massachusetts says he won’t seek re-election in January after two decades in office.

The Eagle-Tribune reports (https://goo.gl/m282AE ) Essex County Sheriff Frank Cousins Jr. said Tuesday that it’s time to move on.

The 57-year-old Republican says Middleton Jail’s new detoxification center is one of the top accomplishments of his 20-year run.

Cousins served as state representative in Newburyport before Gov. William Weld in 1996 appointed him Essex County sheriff to finish the term of Charles Reardon, who resigned after pleading guilty to corruption charges.

State elections officials in 2011 fined Cousins $10,000 for dozens of violations involving money orders and corporate contributions during his 2010 re-election campaign. Cousins dismissed the allegations.

Former jail deputy superintendent Jerry Robito plans to run for sheriff as a Democrat.

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Information from: Eagle Tribune (North Andover, Mass.), https://www.eagletribune.com

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