Polk County Court Group 8 Candidates: Ruth Moracen Knight and John Flynn
In Group 8, a vacancy for County Judge required voters in Polk County to select between a former prosecutor and a current public defense. Florida’s Polk County Court Group 8 candidate Ruth Moracen Knight faced John Flynn in the fight for the seat. In contrast, Flynn defeated Knight by receiving 62% of the vote, while Knight received only 38% of the vote. Let’s Know More About The Polk County Court Group 8 Candidates And Their Political Journeys:
Ruth Moracen Knight Political Party:
According to her campaign website, Ruth Moracen Knight graduated from the University of Florida Levin College of Law with a law degree. Knight worked as a staff attorney for Florida Rural Legal Services in Lakeland for two years after passing the bar test. The nonprofit organization gives low-income customers in 13 counties, as well as farm workers from all around the state, free legal assistance. Knight joined the 10th Judicial Circuit Public Defender’s Office in 2002, which represents criminal defendants who cannot afford to employ a private attorney. According to her campaign website, Lakeland resident Knight has defended clients accused of crimes ranging from first-degree murder to misdemeanor traffic violations. The National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers is a group that Knight belongs to.
Knight has applied for judgeships in the 10th Judicial Circuit numerous times when openings occur, most notably last year when she ran for the position of circuit court judge in the 10th Judicial Circuit to replace Judge Steven L. Selph. Lori Winstead was chosen for that job by Florida Governor Ron DeSantis. The Southern Poverty Law Center has endorsed Knight. Knight had disclosed approximately $21,000 in campaign contributions as of October 14. Her financial backers include former public defender Marion Moorman of Winter Haven, the Turnbull Law Firm in Lakeland, fellow assistant public defender Amy Thornhill, and Polk County School Board member Kay Fields.
John Flynn Political Party:
Flynn, 48, graduated from Loyola University in New Orleans with a law degree and also has a master’s in business administration from Nova Southeastern University. After passing the Florida Bar Exam in 2002, he was hired by Jerry Hill, who is since retired, as the State Attorney for the 10th Judicial Circuit. Flynn worked as a prosecutor for three years before opening his practice. The Mulberry resident has run The Flynn Law Group, a private office in Bartow, since 2005. Flynn served as the chair of the Unauthorized Practice of Law Committee and served as the former chair of the 10th Judicial Circuit Grievance Committee.
Grady Judd, the sheriff of Polk County, has given Flynn his support. The West Central Florida Police Benevolent Association’s endorsement is something else he highlights. However, Flynn reported having received close to $50,000 in campaign contributions as of October 7. Numerous other attorneys and law businesses, including Lopez and Humphries, Kaylor Law Group of Lakeland, and Saunders Law Group of Bartow, are among his donors.
Regarding the election results for Polk County Judge, Ruth Moracen Knight received 72,161 votes. But John Flynn prevailed with 120,094 votes.