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Former Idaho Republican chairman who served time for stalking wife is back in jail

Former Idaho Republican chairman who served time for stalking wife is back in jail

From the August crime report: Kidnapping, internet crimes, a sleeping juror and more series
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Jonathan Parker

Former Idaho Republican Party Chairman Jonathan Parker appears in court in 2019 on a felony stalking charge. He was arrested Wednesday for allegedly violating his probation. 

BOISE — Former Idaho Republican Party Chairman Jonathan David Parker is being held in jail without bond after allegedly possessing drugs and alcohol in violation of his probation from a 2019 conviction for stalking and illegal entry.

In December 2019, Parker was sentenced to two weeks in jail and five years of probation after he pleaded guilty to stalking his estranged wife and illegally entering the home of a female colleague. On Wednesday, he was returned to custody by a probation officer on an agent’s warrant, according to a spokesperson for the Ada County Prosecutor’s Office, Emily Lowe.

At a video arraignment hearing on Thursday, Judge Karen Vehlow read from an affidavit submitted to the court by Parker’s parole officer, which alleged that Boise Police officers found methamphetamine and alcohol at the defendant’s residence on Wednesday. Parker also tested positive for meth, pending laboratory confirmation, according to the affidavit.

The affidavit added that police had “routed new charges” of felony possession of a controlled substance related to the incident.

As part of Parker’s 2019 plea agreement, 4th District Judge Patrick Miller also issued a five-year no-contact order with the two victims and ordered a psychological evaluation for Parker, who was ordered to do 100 hours of community service.

At a sentencing hearing at the time, Parker said that he had experienced personal difficulties after adopting a child and seeing his wife file for divorce.

“During the last year I experienced a great deal of emotional ups and downs,” Parker said in court. “I was not emotionally prepared for these changes, and I made poor and irrational choices.”

In her victim impact statement, Parker’s ex-wife told Judge Miller that Parker was “a very skilled liar and manipulator. I actually lived through more of that than I care to recount here today.

“I just want to underline the fact that my concern for my safety really lies in the fact that he continues to blame me for all of the unraveling in his life.”

Parker’s guilty plea to the two charges settled five pending criminal cases against him. Parker faced up to five years in prison and up to a $10,000 fine on felony stalking charges and a maximum of 6 months in prison and a $1,000 fine on a misdemeanor unlawful entry charge.

Prosecutors had asked the court for a sentence of 90 days in jail, but Miller handed down a sentence of just two weeks.

Parker’s legal problems began May 30 that year, when Boise police arrested him on a felony stalking charge at his then-estranged wife’s apartment complex. He later was charged with misdemeanor privacy trespass, a misdemeanor no-contact order violation, misdemeanor unlawful entry and felony witness intimidation.

The unlawful entry and witness intimidation charges stemmed from interactions with the female colleague at whose house Parker once stayed. The other charges pertained to his ex-wife.

In February 2019, Parker resigned from his position with the state GOP, stating that he wanted to focus on his job and raising his child. There were more than two years left in his term.

Parker will next appear in court for a hearing on Aug. 30 before Judge Miller.

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