Tishaura Jones will be the next mayor of St. Louis. (303380)
Tishaura Jones will be the next mayor of St. Louis. Credit: City of St. Louis

St. Louis Treasurer Tishaura Jones, who has been outspoken in her criticism of the criminal justice system’s “arrest and incarcerate” model, won the St. Louis mayoral election Tuesday and will take over as the first Black female mayor in a city beset by yet another wave of violent crime, reports NBC News.

Jones defeated Alderwoman Cara Spencer in the general election with 51.7 percent to Spencer’s 47.8 percent, based on unofficial results posted on the city’s website. She will be sworn in April 20.

“St. Louis: This is an opportunity for us to rise,” Jones said in her victory speech. “I told you when I was running that we aren’t done avoiding tough conversations. We are done ignoring the racism that has held our city and our region back.”

Spencer, in her concession, noted the historic achievement of her opponent.

“This is something we should all celebrate,” Spencer said. “Our city broke a glass ceiling tonight, a ceiling that shouldn’t have been there.”

Jones, 49, is a former state representative who has been treasurer since 2013. She will replace incumbent Mayor Lyda Krewson, who announced in November that she would not seek a second term. Krewson, 67, is the city’s first woman mayor.

Jones has pledged to bring in more social workers, mental health counselors and substance abuse counselors, rather than adding more office.