This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2015, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.
Three weeks ago, I had never heard of Eric Moutsos.
Now, through some weird cosmic phenomenon, he keeps popping up as a newsworthy character even though I never went looking for him.
Moutsos is the former Salt Lake City police officer who was placed on paid leave after he refused an assignment to ride his motorcycle in the Pride Parade.
He appeared in my column recently when he announced he had gone to work for the conservative Sutherland Institute as a fundraiser and community organizer, explaining that he had resigned from the police department to stand up for his religious beliefs.
I wrote a second time about Moutsos when I learned he was the same officer who cited two gay men for trespassing after they were confronted by LDS security officers for showing romantic affection for each other on the LDS Church-owned Main Street Plaza in 2009. Those charges eventually were dropped.
Now, Moutsos has earned a third trip to my column.
It turns out he is a buddy of Evander Holyfield and played a role in bringing about the "Fight for Sight" bout between the ex-heavyweight champ and former GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney a match that raised $1 million for charity.
In his pre-cop days, Moutsos was a budding country singer under the record label Real Deal Records, which was headed by Holyfield. He went by Eric Ryan, his middle name.
Moutsos said his short music career ended when a record promoter, who had heard his demo, asked him about his throwing arm.
Moutsos said it was OK and wondered why the question was asked.
"Because," the promoter replied, "you have a better chance of being a quarterback in the NFL than making it as a country-western star."
So he came back to Utah, where he grew up, and became a cop.
When Josh Romney, Mitt's son and president of CharityVision, was brainstorming about a celebrity fundraiser, a board member told him about Moutsos and his relationship with Holyfield.
Romney called Moutsos, who gave him the boxing legend's cellphone number.
"I was surprised when I called," Josh said, "and Evander answered the phone immediately."
With that simple call, the fight was on.
We're on a (Tootsie?) roll • Last week's story about Utah's No. 1 ranking in candy consumption reminded me of a column I wrote several years ago pertaining to Utahns and sugar.
Utah Jazz fans, as I reported back then, led the NBA in ice cream sales. There were no hard data to calculate how much more ice cream was sold at Jazz games compared with other teams, but the long lines for frozen treats at EnergySolutions Arena were telling.
A catering official said revenue from ice cream sales at the Salt Lake City arena rivaled beer sales at most other NBA venues and continue to do so.
Good timing • In Tuesday's story about budget cuts at the Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control, spokeswoman Vickie Ashby said one savings measure under consideration was reduced travel.
It just so happens that DABC Executive Director Sal Petilos is in Phoenix for a conference of the National Alcohol Beverage Control Association.
But Ashby says the association is paying his expenses.
Water wasters • Despite pounding rains that persisted through the night, sprinklers at the LDS meetinghouse on 1100 East at 5290 South in Holladay were watering away Tuesday morning.