A state representative and candidate for City Council must spend three days in jail and complete a driver safety course, following a DUI conviction four years ago.
Democratic state Rep. Cherelle Parker, who is running to fill the 9th District Council seat of her former boss and mentor, Councilwoman Marian Tasco, twice appealed the conviction.
This week the state Supreme Court denied a final appeal.
Parker, who represents the 200th district which includes parts of Northwest Philadelphia, was pulled over and arrested April 30, 2011 after officers said they spotted her driving the wrong way on Haines Street in Germantown. The officers said she smelled of alcohol and had trouble getting out of her state-owned Jeep Cherokee, and she had no license, registration or insurance card.
Parker testified that she was never on Haines Street and denied telling the officers she had had two beers and a couple of martinis at Club Champagne in Germantown.
The charges were initially tossed out by Municipal Court Judge Charles Hayden, who rejected the officer's account of the traffic stop. The charges were reinstated when it was revealed that Hayden and Parker were Facebook friends.
Parker's attorney Joseph Kelly appealed the charges at the Superior Court level and was denied.
A final attempt to appeal the matter in the state's highest court was unsuccessful, meaning Parker will have to serve her original sentence: three days in jail a $1,000 fine, driver-safety class and the suspension of her license for a year.
Kelly said in a statement, "State Representative Cherelle Parker has been a committed public servant for over a decade where she has demonstrated a passion for the rule of law…The Representative respects the court's decision, and will be complying in full with their decision. She looks forward to putting this incident from four years ago behind her, and will not be commenting further on this matter."