Over the last two months, Democrat state Rep. Sonya Williams-Barnes has pursued multiple unsuccessful challenges on the residency status of her fellow Democrat opponent in the District 119 election, Jeffery Hulum III. Hulum served on active duty until late 2017 before being discharged on 100% disability.
On April 15, a judge in Hinds County Circuit Court finally ruled in favor of Mr. Hulum, who was not represented, and against Williams-Barnes, represented by former state representative and Democrat party insider Brandon Jones. The claims, that Hulum didn’t meet the two year residency requirement due to his active duty commitments.
Rep. Williams-Barnes filed her first petition on March 7 with the Mississippi Democratic Party Executive Committee, they voted 4-3 in Hulum’s favor. Then the Mississippi Democratic Elections Committee held a hearing on the petition, ruling 32-2 in Hulum’s favor. The committee then certified Hulum to run. Williams-Barnes appealed the ruling, taking the decision to court.
Judge Larry Roberts with the Mississippi Supreme Court was then assigned to the case. According to court transcripts filed this week, he also ruled in favor of Mr. Hulum.
You can view the court transcripts here:
According the the transcripts and a conversation with Mr. Hulum, for the last 22 years he has been serving in the United States Armed Forces. He served from February 1996 until February 2018. After retiring from service he returned to Gulfport where he was born and raised.
“I wanted to do something good for my community so I decided to run,” said Hulum. “The power of God prevailed and we won’t the court case.”
Transcripts from court also show that the judge was presented with facts that on January 24 of 2018 the Army delivered Mr. Hulum’s belongings to a Gulfport residence. This gave the Judge a “strong indication” that this was his home.
From the transcripts of the Judge Roberts speaking:
When asked if she would appeal the decision from Judge Roberts, Williams-Barnes said:
“I am respecting the Judge’s decision and am excited about meeting Hulum on the campaign trail.”
Below is the petition for Judicial Review: