In a surprise turnaround, voters picked political newcomer Mario King as the Democratic candidate for mayor.
King received 1,279 votes to longtime public servant Billy E. Knight’s 1,180.
King, 30, said he was not a candidate for the young or the old but for everyone.
“I just thank God the people were interested in the election enough to vote for a candidate that had a plan and was willing to stand up for each citizen across the city,” King told the Sun Herald on Tuesday night.
King will face independent Mayor Billy Broomfield, Republican John Mosley Jr. and independents Wanda Williams and Timothy “Mr. Dubs” Dubose in the general election June 6.
Voters also picked David Chapman over Shirley Dubose Chambers, who gave up her post as Ward 4 alderwoman to run for the at-large seat.
Alderman-at-large winner Chapman said he believes the wide margin of votes in his favor indicates residents want to make sure “we have the right transparency and accountability at City Hall.”
Chapman told the Sun Herald he believes that is the public sentiment.
He said the win is “quite an honor, and I’m appreciative of the support I got throughout the city.”
Voters were tough on incumbents in the primary, and three faced runoffs Tuesday in Wards 1-3.
In the Tuesday runoff, Ward 1 incumbent James C. Smith lost to Sherwood Bradford; Ward 2 incumbent Chuck Redmond defeated Ruby Hill and Ward 3 incumbent Robert H. Byrd Jr. defeated James Winters.
In Ward 4, Ennit Morris defeated Willie Mena Martin.
Moss Point results
Billy E. Knight Sr.
David E. Chapman Sr.
Shirley Dubose Chambers
Ward 1 Alderman
James C. Smith (I)
Ward 2 Alderman
Chuck Redmond (I)
Ward 3 Alderman
Robert H. Byrd Jr. (I)
Ward 4 Alderman
Willie Mena Martin
Note: (I) stands for incumbent. Total votes are the votes available by press time Tuesday, not including absentee ballots.
Ocean Springs results
Ward 3 Alderman, Republican
Joseph Bellman Jr.
Ward 2 Councilman, Democrat
Richard “D.J.” Jackson
Tobey L. Bartee