RALEIGH, Miss. (WDAM) - Several gathered at the courthouse in Raleigh Friday for the swearing-in of Matt Sullivan as circuit court judge for the 13th District.
This ceremony comes after the passing of former Circuit Court Judge Eddie Bowen, who died from COVID-19 complications in February.
Gov. Tate Reeves announced Thursday that he had appointed Sullivan to the court, which covers Covington, Jasper, Simpson and Smith counties. Sullivan had been serving as district attorney for the 13th district.
“Judge Bowen hired me as an assistant DA back in 2007, and I didn’t have many lawyers in my family,” Sullivan said.
That didn’t stop Sullivan from continuing to learn.
“Judge Bowen took me in with no experience, trained me as an ADA, and showed me a lot about the law,” Sullivan said.
As the new circuit court judge, this is what Sullivan said he’s bringing to the table.
“I’m going to work hard to have mercy on those who are deserving of mercy, and I’m also going to hear cases and if someone is deserving of punishment, I’m going to see that they receive justice,” Sullivan said.
Taking over as district attorney for the 13th district is Chris Hennis, who was also sworn in at the ceremony Friday.
“I’m in awe of being appointed to this position,” Hennis said. “I’ve been a prosecutor for 16 years, and like the governor said, this is not a job to me, it’s a passion.”
Reeves spoke at the ceremony honoring both men for their hard work and dedication.
“Their job is to seek justice and that is a challenge and difficult, but I know that they are up to challenge,” Reeves said. “They are going to do a good job.”
Judge Michael Randolph, Chief Justice of the Mississippi Supreme Court, administered the oaths of the office.