Matt Manweller (Washington State House Republicans)

Matt Manweller (Washington State House Republicans)

Ellensburg lawmaker accused of relationship with 17-year-old

A former high school student says she had a sexual relationship with Rep. Matt Manweller in the 1990s.

Associated Press

OLYMPIA — A former Idaho high school student of embattled Washington lawmaker Rep. Matt Manweller says she had a sexual relationship with him in the 1990s, when she was 17 and he was 27.

Under Idaho state law at the time, sex between an adult male and a female younger than 18 constituted statutory rape.

The Northwest News Network reported Friday that the unnamed woman came forward in part because of the Republican’s response to an investigation finding he engaged in a pattern of unprofessional and inappropriate behavior at Central Washington University.

The university fired the political-science professor last month. Manweller has vehemently denied the allegations and is suing for wrongful termination.

He is running for re-election this fall.

Manweller acknowledged that he taught the woman at a high school in Hailey, Idaho, but denies that he had a sexual relationship with her when she was 17.

House Republican leaders Friday evening called on Manweller to resign. He hasn’t responded to a request for comment.

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