The Washington County Commission has selected low bidder R. Clayton Huntsman of St. George as defense attorney in the murder trial of Jeffery Scott Park.

Park, 28, La Verkin, was arraigned Tuesday in 5th Circuit Court in the Aug. 29 strangulation death of his former girlfriend, Mari JuliAnne Murati, 46, La Verkin.Huntsman submitted the low bid of $24,000 to provide indigent defense services through the first right of appeal, said County Attorney Eric Ludlow.

Other attorneys submitting bids included J. MacArthur Wright and Jeff Wilcox, $60,000 plus costs and expenses; Doug Terry, $30,000; John Miles, $40,000; V. Lowry Snow and Lamar Winward, $35,000; Alan Boyack, $33,500; and Gary Pendleton, $200,000, said Ludlow.

Preliminary hearing is set for Sept. 9 at 2:30 p.m. for Park, who is being held in the Washington County Jail in lieu of $1 million cash bail.

Deputy Sheriff Pam Humphreys said the slaying occurred about four days after the woman had asked Park to move out following a disagreement. Park had been living in the house since March.

Park returned to the house on Aug. 28 with a friend, Walt Smith, to remove his belongings, according to authorities.

The woman was killed Aug. 29 between 1:30 and 2 a.m., said Humphreys.

Authorities said she was raped and sodomized and her hair had been cut off. Humphreys said the telephone lines in the house had been cut.

Teresa Rae, a friend, said Murati told her four days before her death that she was looking for a new roommate because she felt the one she had did not represent a positive situation.