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While speculation swirls as to Columbia, S.C. mayor Steve Benjamin’s future plans – and his proximity to an illegal video poker ring – a federal law man is reportedly eyeing Benjamin’s current job.

According to our sources, Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) analyst Larry Sypolt is strongly considering challenging Benjamin in the Columbia, S.C. mayoral race this November. In fact one of our sources says Sypolt – who also owns a pair of successful businesses – may have even provided the U.S. Department of Justice (USDOJ) with notice of his intention to step down.

“He’s running,” our source says, adding that a public announcement of Sypolt’s plans could come as early as next week.

Hmmmm …

According to our USDOJ contacts, Sypolt is an intelligence analyst with the FBI’s Columbia, S.C. division – one who has extensive experience researching the growing gang problem in the Midlands region of the state.

Beyond that, we’ve heard absolutely nothing about the guy … well, except from one of our loyal female readers, who informed us that Sypolt “will do well with the ladies.”

Again … hmmmm.

Obviously public safety issues will factor heavily in the upcoming race given the recent rash of violence in downtown Columbia’s Five Points region – and the piss poor police work of Benjamin’s hand-picked chief, Randy Scott.

Will that give a law enforcement candidate an advantage? It could …

Anyway, Sypolt is on Twitter so we’ll be following his account in the event any announcements are forthcoming.

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