Crump bested former assistant District Attorney Stephen Hatchett by a margin of 3-1 districtwide, scoring an unofficial number of 15,246 to Hatchett’s 5,385.
The winner held a 2-to-1 margin in McMinn, Polk and Monroe counties, but Bradley County turned out in force, giving the new DA a 77 percent to 22 percent win in his home county.
“One of the things we’ve talked about all along in this campaign is to focus on accountability and standards and we’re going to be starting that conversation [with the staff] early on,” Crump said.
He said his office will start by reaching out to law enforcement and judges, as well as the community, and “letting them know what we have in mind and plan on doing.”
“We want to reintroduce them to the staff. One of the things that makes people comfortable is if they know people,” Crump said. “All they know about the staff right now is what they’ve had the opportunity to read in the news.”
He said once the focus of the staff has been renewed, the office can move forward.
“I believe there are some very good people in that office. I think there are people who are capable of doing some amazing things. I just think they need leadership, and we’re going to begin that process,” Crump said.
He also said he believes the transition from current District Attorney General Steve Bebb’s administration will be a smooth one.
“Steve Bebb has said all along he wanted to make it that way,” Crump said. “He told me a year ago if I won he would work with me to make that transition smooth. I have no reason to believe he won’t.”
Hatchett said he knew he was the underdog coming into the race, and sent Crump his best wishes.
“I am obviously disappointed in the result, but I am proud of all of the people who helped me,” Hatchett said Tuesday evening after his loss to Crump, who was a former assistant district attorney general under Jerry Estes.
“The voters have spoken and Mr. Crump has a job to do. I wish him all the best,” Hatchett said.
Crump laughed when asked if he feels like the dog who chased a car and finally caught it.
“Having been an assistant DA, I have some idea of what the car tastes like, but I don’t think the idea I’ve won has really hit yet,” he said.
“Until the first day when I’m required to make those decisions, I don’t think I’ll really feel that. Right now, I feel like the dog that might be right at the tire, but close enough where I can smell it.”