Benton County Sheriff Steve Keane announces his retirement - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Benton County Sheriff Steve Keane announces his retirement

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KENNEWICK, WA - Benton County Sheriff Steve Keane held a retirement press conference today at Benton County Justice Center to explain his decision to step down April 1st.

Reporter Rex Carlin attended the conference, and learned that today was a day of reflection for Sheriff Steve Keane as he looked back on his 6+ years running the Benton County Sheriff's Office, but he says he knows it's time to step aside.

Sheriff Keane says although his chemotherapy has finished, his body hasn't been properly recovering since the treatment...and that waiting to finish out his term simply isn't an option for him.

"I'm in remission, and I'm getting healthier," Sheriff Keane explained. "One of the challenges with cancer in a position like this is a 24/7 operation. Even the stress that you're used to, just the amount of work and activities that go on with this profession makes it difficult to allow your body to heal."

The Benton County Commissioners will get the final say on who will take over for Sheriff Keane when he steps down April 1st. Sheriff Keane says his replacement will probably be named by mid-April at the latest, and will need to run again when his term is up next year.

And as for Sheriff Keane? He says he'll be moving out to his cabin in northern Idaho for a while as he continues to get healthy, but he says he'll be back and will stay in touch with the Sheriff's Office as needed.