Cache County Republicans Pick Parker's Replacement

Cache County Republicans Pick Parker's Replacement

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HYRUM, Utah (AP) -- Cache County Republicans have picked Curt Webb of Providence to replace Rep. Brent Parker, R-Wellsville, who resigned Friday after being cited for allegedly soliciting sex from a police officer posing as a male prostitute in Salt Lake City.

Webb, who lost to Parker in a primary race last fall, was picked at a special meeting Saturday, which drew 144 of the 185 GOP delegates from House District 5, despite the short notice.

"I feel very bad for Mr. Parker and his family," said Webb, who was quoted by The Salt Lake Tribune. "There's a lot to learn."

Cache County Republican Chairman Clair Ellis expects Gov. Mike Leavitt to accept Webb as the party's choice to replace Parker and said Webb will be sworn in Monday and complete Parker's term, which was to end in 2004.

County Republicans said it was important to move quickly in finding a replacement for Parker as there are only three days left in the 2003 legislative session.

The nomination of Webb, who is the manager of a title company, was endorsed by Rep. Loraine Pace, R-Logan, who said he would be a friend to Cache County citizens.

Parker, father of six and grandfather of six, runs a dairy farm in Mount Sterling.

Salt Lake City police say Parker solicited the undercover officer just before midnight Wednesday near Exchange Place downtown Salt Lake City. Police reports allege the legislator drove to a secluded location a block away, where he offered the officer money for oral sex.

Parker was cited and released. A solicitation charge carries a potential sentence of up to six months.

(Copyright 2003 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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