Peralta bonds out of jail after sexual battery arrest

St. Bernard Parish President Dave Peralta left the jail just before noon.
St. Bernard Parish President Dave Peralta left the jail just before noon.

CHALMETTE, LA (WVUE) - Just before noon Thursday, St. Bernard Parish President Dave Peralta walked out of the parish jail, where he was photographed and fingerprinted one day after he was indicted on a count of sexual battery against his wife.

Peralta, through his attorney, continues to maintain his innocence.

Not long before Peralta was booked at the jail, he walked into the courthouse where on Wednesday a grand jury handed up the indictment.

Peralta did not comment to news reporters outside the jail, or as he entered the courthouse.

Sharon Peralta has maintained for months that he tied her up and raped her in their home in October 2012.

Dave Peralta has publicly stated that the sex was consensual, and that they often engaged in "bondage" sex.

St. Bernard Parish Judge Jacques Sanborn set bond at $20,000 with Dave Peralta looking on in the courtroom. He said he didn't consider Peralta to be a flight risk.

Defense attorney Steve London said Peralta has no plans to resign as parish president.

"Let's put this in the proper perspective: This is his personal life here, this isn't like he's been accused of taking a bribe, or he's been accused of malfeasance. This has nothing to do with his position as parish president," said London.

Sharon Peralta released a statement Thursday afternoon.

"I am relieved that after all the testimony the Grand Jury heard yesterday that they handed down an indictment for sexual battery for what he did to me on my birthday! It isn't over yet. I will make a formal request and ask that all of the judges recuse themselves as they have in previous matters concerning David and I. My family and I can begin a healing process that will take some time."

"It's going to be vigorously defended, and the allegation as far as I'm concerned is baseless," said London.

And while Dave Peralta had nothing to say when he came out of the jail, his attorney said that they have strong evidence to refute the allegations.

"Oh, I know that - I already have that," said London.

Assistant Attorney General David Weilbaecher, who is prosecuting the case, had no comment.

London said he expects Peralta, who is a former police officer, to be arraigned on the charge in a month or so.

Dave Peralta has been ordered to stay away from Sharon Peralta.

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