Matt Bingham is the conservative Republican candidate ready to continue serving the people of Smith County as their Criminal District Attorney. Matt is well-known in the criminal justice system for being fair, but tough on crime. With almost eighteen years' service as an experienced and skilled prosecutor, Matt has the background, qualifications, and experience to ensure that justice is done in Smith County. In 1995, Matt started as an entry-level misdemeanor prosecutor in Smith County. Through hard work and constant dedication to crime victims, law enforcement, and the people of this county, Matt rose through the ranks of the D.A.'s Office to eventually become the District Attorney.
Matt enjoys an outstanding personal and working relationship with Smith County law enforcement. He is honored to have the support and endorsement of Gary Swindle, Smith County Sheriff Larry Smith, Troup Police Chief Pat Hendrix, Craig Shelton, Constable John Smith, Constable Ken Bibby, and many other hard-working men and women in Smith County law enforcement.
As an Assistant District Attorney and the District Attorney of Smith County, Matt has handled tens of thousands of criminal cases and successfully prosecuted before a jury of Smith County citizens over 150 felony cases, including thefts, burglaries, possessions and distributions of drugs, sexual assaults, aggravated sexual assaults of children, murders, and capital murders. He has prosecuted the most violent offenders in Smith County. Matt has successfully prosecuted before a jury twenty-seven murder and capital murder cases, receiving numerous Life sentences and six Death Penalty verdicts. His experience and trial skills have ensured that the criminals are held accountable for their actions, and that the victims of crime receive justice.
Matt graduated from Baylor University with a BBA in Finance in 1989. After graduating from Baylor, Matt earned his law degree from the University of Tulsa in 1992. Upon graduation from law school, Matt worked for Republican United States Congressman Sam Johnson, Third District of Texas, as a Legislative Assistant. After leaving Congressman Johnson's office, Matt went to work in the District Attorney's Office in Potter County as a felony prosecutor. In 1995, Matt accepted a job as a misdemeanor prosecutor in Smith County, working for then District Attorney Jack Skeen, Jr. Matt was very successful as a misdemeanor prosecutor, and quickly rose through the ranks to become a first-chair felony prosecutor, having been assigned to all three of the felony district courts.
In 1999, Matt was selected as one of six prosecutors state-wide to serve as a Special Assistant United States Attorney for the Eastern District of Texas, on the newly initiated Project Exile. This program was initiated by then Texas Attorney General John Cornyn, and then Governor George Bush, to prosecute convicted felons and drug dealers who possessed firearms. In 2002, Matt was appointed by then District Attorney Jack Skeen, Jr., to serve as the First Assistant District Attorney. Matt served as the First Assistant until Jack Skeen was appointed Judge of the 241st Judicial District Court. Upon Judge Skeen's appointment, Matt served as the Acting District Attorney of Smith County, until his appointment to the position of District Attorney by Governor Rick Perry in 2004.
Matt is honored to share his knowledge and experience with prosecutors from around the State at the Center for American and International Law in Plano, Texas. He has presented lectures on Capital Murder litigation and Mental Health issues involved in criminal litigation. Matt is often contacted by other Texas prosecutors seeking his opinion and advice regarding Capital Murder litigation and trial strategy when the defendant is alleging that he is insane or mentally retarded. Matt successfully represented the State of Texas against Death Row inmates in the first, and every subsequent, appellate claim in Smith County made by Death Row inmates, claiming they were mentally retarded and ineligible for execution as sentenced by the trial juries. After extensive court hearings, all were found by a Judge to not be mentally retarded.
Matt is a member of the State Bar of Texas and is admitted to practice in the United States District Courts for both the Eastern and Northern Districts of Texas. He is a member of the National District Attorneys Association, the Texas District and County Attorneys Association, the Smith County Bar Association, East Texas Peace Officer Association, and the Tyler Area Chamber of Commerce. Matt has previously served on the board of MADD, currently serves on the board of the Children's Advocacy Center, and is a Fellow of The Texas Bar Foundation.
Matt is known as a crime fighter, and as a strong advocate for the rights of crime victims. He is a conservative Republican, and a strong supporter of the Party's conservative principles.
Matt has been married to his wife, Anne, who teaches at a Title 1 School in Tyler, for eighteen years. Fourteen years ago, they were blessed to adopt their beautiful daughter, Haylie. Matt and his family are members of First Baptist Church, here in Tyler.