BY ART BUKOWSKI
TRAVERSE CITY — There won't be a new sheriff in town.
Incumbent Grand Traverse Sheriff Tom Bensley, a Republican, was on track to beat Democratic challenger Joe McCarthy by a wide margin late Tuesday.
"I'm thankful for the support," Bensley said. "We ran a very straightforward, positive campaign."
Bensley handily defeated two-term incumbent Sheriff Scott Fewins in 2008, and fended off challenger Kevin Sandvig in the August primary.
McCarthy, a Traverse City Police detective, couldn't be reached for comment.
Bensley believes county residents were pleased with his first term.
"Hopefully, they saw that there's been some changes in the sheriff's department and that we've been working to improve it," he said.
Blair Township resident Jake Jorns cast his vote for Bensley.
"It seems like he's forthright, is very knowledgeable at what he does, and he's proactive in the community," he said. "He's done a good job."