Meet the Special Agent in Charge

Headshot photo of Special Agent in Charge Ashan BenedictAshan M. Benedict began serving as the Special Agent in Charge of the Washington Field Division of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) in January 2019. He is responsible for ATF operations throughout Washington, D.C., the Commonwealth of Virginia and the eastern panhandle of West Virginia..

Mr. Benedict previously served as the Special Agent in Charge of the New York Field Division from October 2016 to January 2019 where he was responsible for ATF operations throughout the entire state of New York. Mr. Benedict is a member of the Senior Executive Service (SES).

ATF is a key law enforcement agency within the U.S. Department of Justice that protects our communities from violent criminals, criminal organizations, the illegal use and trafficking of firearms, the illegal use and storage of explosives, acts of arson and bombings, acts of terrorism, and the illegal diversion of alcohol and tobacco products. The men and women of ATF perform the dual responsibilities of enforcing federal criminal laws and regulating the firearms and explosives industries to protect against crime, violence, and other threats to public safety.

Mr. Benedict, a 25-year federal law enforcement veteran, has served ATF in several major posts of duty that include New York, Los Angeles, Washington, D.C. and Baltimore Field Divisions. He began his ATF career in 1998 as a special agent assigned to ATF’s High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area (HIDTA) Task Force in Washington, D.C. As a street agent he investigated violent drug trafficking organizations, armed robberies of commercial businesses, armed carjacking, gang-related racketeering murder and firearms trafficking offenses. He also served over 3 years as a tactical operator on ATF’s Special Response Team (SRT) assigned to the teams in Los Angeles, CA and Washington, D.C.

Mr. Benedict was promoted in 2007 and served for over 4 years as a resident agent in charge (RAC) in the Washington Field Division, prior to his promotion in 2011 to Assistant Special Agent in Charge (ASAC). He served for over 2 years as an ASAC in the Baltimore and Los Angeles Field Divisions. Mr. Benedict served for over 4 years in ATF National Headquarters (HQ) assignments, conducted over two tours. He held HQ leadership positions in the Special Operations Division (SOD), Office of Public and Governmental Affairs (PGA) and the Office of Professional Responsibility and Security Operations (OPRSO). Mr. Benedict began his law enforcement career in 1995 as a special agent with the U.S. Treasury Department’s IRS – Criminal Investigation Division, stationed in the Los Angeles and New York Field Offices.

Mr. Benedict was involved in ATF’s response and investigation of several notable events and incidents, including the September 11, 2001, terrorist attack on the Pentagon; the Beltway Sniper investigation; ATF’s response and support to New Orleans, LA after Hurricane Katrina; the Washington, D.C. Navy Yard active shooter; the San Bernardino, CA, mass shooting terrorist attack in December 2015 and the mass mailing of pipe bombs in New York City in October 2018, and the National Civil Unrest in Washington, D.C. during May/June 2020.

Mr. Benedict is a New York City native and grew up in the Bronx and Yonkers. He holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Accounting from Fordham University and is a graduate of the Asian American Government Executive Network’s Senior Executive Service Development Program. In 2017, Mr. Benedict received the Federal Drug Agent Foundation’s (FDAF) Lifetime Achievement Award. He and his wife, ATF Special Agent Katherine Benedict, have three children.

Last Reviewed August 31, 2020