DA rejects intimidation charges against Palermo - KPLC 7 News, Lake Charles, Louisiana

DA rejects intimidation charges against Palermo

Joseph R. Palermo Jr. (KPLC Archives) Joseph R. Palermo Jr. (KPLC Archives)

Attorneys for Sulphur businessman Joe Palermo say the Calcasieu Parish District Attorney's Office is dropping witness intimidation charges against him.

Palermo, 70, was indicted earlier this year on various charges, including forgery, possession of stolen things and altering and removing the ID numbers on a motor vehicle.

Palermo was also arrested recently on charges of intimidating a witness.

Karl Koch, Palermo's attorney, says DA John DeRosier knows that Palermo did not intimidate a witness and that DeRosier wanted to embarrass Palermo.

"The witness intimidation charge was a baseless matter. This arrest of Mr. Palermo was nothing but harassment," said Koch "We knew that this case was going to end the way it did, which is with the district attorney dropping the charges."

"John DeRosier from the start was afraid to face Mr. Palermo in court on these charges. That's why the DA fought us on something so basic as getting access to the arrest warrant affidavit," Koch said.

DeRosier disputes this and says that just because they are not filing charges now, it does not mean they will not be in the future.

"The Calcasieu Parish District Attorney's office does not file criminal charges to embarrass or to hurt or injure anyone. We file complaints based on reports given to us by law enforcement that are based on the evidence and every decision we make is evidenced based," DeRosier said. 

"This defendant and his platoon of lawyers will have many opportunities to visit with Mr. Holland and I in the courtroom," DeRosier said.

Palermo's attorneys are expected to file various motions in the case next month.

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