Submitted Javin Cripps recently announced his candidacy for 15th Judicial District Circuit Court Judge.

Submitted

Javin Cripps recently announced his candidacy for 15th Judicial District Circuit Court Judge.

Assistant District Attorney General Javin Cripps has announced his candidacy for 15th Judicial District Circuit Court Judge.

Cripps is a life-long Smith County resident with experience in handling both civil and criminal cases during his 14-year career. He is proud to bring a strong work ethic and a commitment to fairness to his campaign.

Cripps grew up on a family cattle farm between Smith and Wilson counties, where he worked every day when he wasn't in school. On summer breaks he joined his father, a general contractor, at work.

Cripps worked 30-40 hours per week as a construction laborer while working on his undergraduate degree at Middle Tennessee State University. He earned his bachelor's degree in criminal justice in 2001 with a double minor in psychology and political science.

Before starting law school in 2002, Cripps earned his contractor and plumbing license.

Cripps is a graduate of the Cecil C. Humphreys School of Law in Memphis. He interned for two years at the Shelby County Public Defender's Office before joining the Holliman Law firm in Carthage.

In private practice, Cripps accepted contract work for the public defender and handled a wide variety of civil cases, such as child custody, divorce, workers' compensation, and Social Security.

In late 2006, Cripps was offered positions at both the public defender's office and the district attorney's office at the same time. After much deliberation, thought, and prayer, he chose to become an assistant district attorney. Since that time, he has worked in every county in the 15th judicial district (which includes Jackson, Macon, Smith, Trousdale and Wilson counties), practicing in Macon County for the last five years.

"I am proud to be a part of this community, and that is why I chose to serve here," Cripps said. "I have built relationships with the people and with the legal and law-enforcement communities in every county in this district. Over the years, I have prosecuted every type of case from speeding to first-degree murder."

Cripps has been married for two years. His wife, Melanie, is a chiropractor in Carthage. He shares custody of his two daughters, both honor students and athletes at Union Heights.

"Their mother and I co-parent very efficiently and effectively," Cripps said. "Part of the job of a circuit court judge is to help families navigate the process of becoming co-parents, and I have now experienced that process as an attorney and as a father. I can bring a level of understanding and insight that families who go through this difficult transition often need."

The Republican primary will be held in March.

Macon County native Judge John Wootten, Jr., who has served the 15th Judicial District as a circuit judge since 1998, will retire effective Jan. 1.