We’ve got some sad news today out of Philadelphia, where Julia Law, a young paralegal, was found dead in her employer’s bathtub. That may seem odd, but as it turns out, Law had been dating her boss, well-known defense attorney A. Charles Peruto Jr., for a month or two, and she had a key to his condo.
Law was supposed to be celebrating her 27th birthday today, but instead, we’re awaiting her autopsy results. Law was reportedly texting with coworkers until 1 a.m. on the day of her death, lamenting the lack of “scented bubble bath” at Peruto’s home. That was apparently enough to invoke police suspicion.
At this time, the cause of Law’s death is unknown, but some observers wonder if the beautiful young woman may have been murdered….
The CBS News Crimesider blog has some of the details on the investigation into Law’s untimely death:
Homicide investigators have questioned Charles Peruto Jr., a high-profile Philadelphia attorney, after his 26-year-old girlfriend, Julia Law, was found dead inside his Center City home Saturday morning, CBS Philly reports.
Peruto is reportedly said to be a witness and not a suspect as of now. Detectives are still investigating the cause of death and have not officially ruled the case a homicide.
Peruto, who has been practicing law for more than 25 years, was described as “crying, hysterical,” upon hearing the news of his much younger girlfriend’s death. Here’s more from the Philadelphia Daily News:
[W]hen Peruto was on the scene and police cleared out, the prominent lawyer made a decision out of respect for his girlfriend: Peruto scrubbed down and cleaned the bathroom, [Richard] DeSipio, [an associate in Peruto's practice,] said.
“He wanted to personally clean the bathroom,” DeSipio said of Peruto. “He didn’t want some stranger doing that. He wanted to give her that dignity.”
Peruto was involved with the defense of some particularly violent alleged mobsters, including Joey Merlino and Nicodemo Scarfo. When you keep company with men like this, trouble is sure to follow. It is possible that someone from Peruto’s notorious client base caught up with his paralegal turned paramour.
According to the Philadelphia Inquirer, the results of Law’s autopsy may be released this afternoon. We at Above the Law offer condolences to both Chuck Peruto and Julia Law’s family during this time of grief.
“Moonstruck” paralegal was lovestruck with her boss, famed defense lawyer Chuck Peruto
[Philadelphia Daily News]
Autopsy results possible Tuesday for Peruto’s girlfriend [Philadelphia Inquirer]
Julia Law, 26, girlfriend and paralegal of high-profile Phila. attorney, found dead in his home [CBS News]
Paralegal is found dead in lawyer’s bathtub [ABA Journal]