Wednesday, May 09, 2001

Parker wins GOP primary

Lawyer will run for Mason bench

The Cincinnati Enquirer

        LEBANON — George Parker defeated three other lawyers to win the Republican primary for the Mason Municipal Court judge's seat in Tuesday's election.

        Mr. Parker received 2,595 votes, beating Robert Peeler who had 1,146 votes; James A. Whitaker, with 718 votes and Thomas E. Fox Jr., 623 votes.

        Mr. Parker is likely to be the next municipal judge in the heavily Republican city unless a strong write-in candidate files for and then beats him in the November general election.

        It was the only candidate race in Southwest Ohio in Tuesday's primary election.

        If elected this fall, Mr. Parker will replace Judge David Batsche, who is retiring at the end of the year after serving 30 years as Mason's judge. The court serves about 50,000 residents in Mason and Deerfield Township. Misdemeanor criminal and traffic cases, initial hearings for felony offenders and some civil complaints are heard in the court.

        The six-year judicial term is considered part-time even though the court has hearings five days a week.

        Mr. Parker, 36, is a graduate of UC and Capital University Law School.

        He waged an unsuccessful campaign three years ago against Anthony Valen for a seat on the 12th District Court of Appeals.

        Mr. Parker has served as acting municipal judge, a magistrate handling domestic relations cases in Butler County common Pleas Court and as coordinator of the dispute-resolution program in Butler County.

        Mr. Fox, 46, is a graduate of the University of Cincinnati College of Law. He has served as the primary acting judge in Mason Municipal Court in Judge Batsche's absence since 1995.

        Mr. Peeler, 48, is a graduate of Salmon P. Chase College of Law. He was endorsed by the Miami Valley Association of Trial Lawyers, and by Butler County Prosecutor Robin Piper.

        Mr. Whittaker, 54, has served as Lebanon's prosecutor for 24 years and preceded Robert Peeler as prosecutor in Mason.


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