UtahPolicy.com was the first to report that lawmakers are now fearful there may be an active effort to put and entrap them in a compromising situation.
Thursday night, Sen. Evan Vickers, R-Cedar City, says a strange woman knocked on his hotel room. She then announced that she was his “date” for the evening. He said, “No, you’re not.” She said, “Yes, I’m your date.”
Vickers immediately retreated to his room and phoned several of his colleagues asking if they could come and assist him with the unwanted guest.
The allegation and potential ramifications are so severe that the Republican members of the Utah Senate are investigating the situation and how to avoid such a “honey trap” in the future. Senate President Wayne Niederhauser, R-Sandy, says the capitol police have been alerted and there is an active investigation underway.
Stanard resigned his House seat suddenly on Tuesday evening with little explanation. Less than 24 hours later, the story about his tryst with a prostitute was published.
It’s not clear whether Thursday night’s incident was a prank, an effort by a media organization to catch another lawmaker in a situation that would cause another scandal, or simply a misunderstanding. However, this latest threat following the Stanard scandal is being treated as a clear and present danger to public officials.
Senate President Wayne Niederhauser says lawmakers should consider traveling in groups in public to avoid these kinds of situations.
One lawmaker who frequently stays in a hotel during the legislative session told UtahPolicy.com he’s witnessed single women who are “dressed provocatively” milling around the hotel or walking up and down the hallways in the evenings but didn’t give much thought about it until the story about Stanard broke earlier this week.