Former St. Bernard Parish President Dave Peralta found dead in his home

CHALMETTE – Former St. Bernard Parish President Dave Peralta has been found dead in his home.

Parish President Guy McInnis issued a statement on the St. Bernard Parish Government’s official Facebook page on Peralta’s passing.

According to the St. Bernard Parish Sheriff’s Office, deputies responded to Peralta’s Newport Street home in Meraux about 11 a.m. Tuesday. A relative found Peralta, 64, cold and unconscious. He was pronounced dead at his home.

St. Bernard Parish Sheriff James Pohlmann said no foul play is suspected, and Peralta’s death appears to be from natural causes.

In 2016, Peralta, who served one term as parish president, pleaded no contest today to felony malfeasance and abuse of office and misdemeanor stalking charges as part of a plea deal that kept him out of jail.

He was indicted in August 2015 on 22 charges, including malfeasance in office, obstruction of justice, extortion and stalking.

His legal troubles began in 2013, when his now ex-wife Sharon Schaefer accused him of raping her in their home.

Those charges were dismissed, but he faced additional charges in other parishes.

He ran for re-election while under indictment, but placed fifth out of seven candidates.