METAIRIE, LA (WVUE) - A well-known Metairie restaurant owner is facing sexual battery allegations. A hair salon operator has filed a civil lawsuit against Joseph Impastato, claiming he made unwanted sexual advances toward her.
The operator of the salon, who leases her space from Impastato, claims he touched her against her will, tried to kiss her and solicited sex from her on multiple occasions, suggesting "she engage in sex with him in the new bedroom and sauna/shower he had built above Impastato's."
The lawsuit also alleges that Impastato requested the salon operator to "take care of him" sexually. The lawsuit says there were witnesses to the alleged sexual battery. Tulane law professor Joel Friedman says those witnesses could play a big role in this lawsuit.
"If you have witnesses, particularly contemporary witnesses, witnesses who were there at the time, that's very compelling evidence," said Friedman.
We reached out to Impastato's attorney, but he said both he and his client have no comment.
According to the lawsuit, when she told Impastato she "could no longer tolerate his repeated sexual batteries" and "would never succumb to his unwanted sexual advances," Impastato retaliated against her by initiating action to evict her from the property before the lease expires in 2019.
"If this were true, this could also be a criminal matter, which she could decide to file a claim, a charge with the district attorney and then they either prosecute it or not as they investigate it," said Friedman.
We called the plaintiff's attorney, but they declined our request for an on-camera interview.