Joseph Perciavalle (left , BeaverCountian.com file photo) / David Lozier (submitted photo)
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An attorney for the suspended Aliquippa assistant police chief has motioned for a charge dismissal hearing ahead of the scheduled May 6 trial, has notified the judge he intends to call District Attorney David Lozier as a witness, and has asked to have the Beaver County District Attorney’s Office disqualified from prosecuting the case.

Joseph Perciavalle faces a misdemeanor charge of corrupting a minor and a felony violation of the Wiretap Act.

Defense Attorney Steven Townsend included with his motion a copy of the disputed recorded conversation between Perciavalle and Police Chief Donald Couch, who is also suspended. The recording had previously been played in its entirety in open court by prosecutors during a preliminary hearing for Perciavalle on Dec. 4.

Perciavalle made the 39-minute recording without Couch’s knowledge on March 2 of last year, as state police executed a search warrant inside city hall. Townsend disputes an assertion by prosecutors that it was made as the two sat together in a patrol car alone, instead asserting they were speaking between two open windows in separate vehicles in a parking lot and that others were around and heard.

On the recording, Couch and Perciavalle can be heard speculating about what the state police may be investigating, including the possibility that investigators might be looking into a misappropriation of pension funds. A third unidentified voice is also discernible on the recording.

Townsend said Perciavalle didn’t violate the Wiretap Act because he had a legal right as a witness to record it if he had a reasonable suspicion it could be evidence of a previous, current or future violent crime.

Townsend wrote that District Attorney David Lozier knew Perciavalle was a witness in an ongoing investigation with both state and federal officials. BeaverCountian.com published an investigative report on Nov. 1 detailing a series of text messages between Perciavalle and Lozier. During their exchange, Perciavalle wrote about providing evidence to Lozier of alleged financial improprieties and civil rights violations involving the Aliquippa police department.

Townsend also wrote that Couch knew Perciavalle was a participant and/or witness to an active investigation into Aliquippa finances, corruption and the police department.

Townsend alleged that Couch should have had no expectation of privacy in a public area. He also alleged that Lozier was aware of threats Couch made against Perciavalle.

In a separate motion, Townsend also alleged the evidence did not substantiate the charge of corrupting a minor.

That charge resulted from a June arrest in which county detectives accused Perciavalle of sending an obscene text message to then Aliquippa police Sgt. Kenneth Watkins’ then 17-year-old daughter, Lauren. Detectives had confiscated Lauren’s smartphone as part of Rachael DelTondo’s May 13 murder investigation.

The Wiretap Act violation charge came in July after county detectives reviewed Perciavalle’s confiscated smartphone.

Townsend wrote in his filing that the prosecution failed to prove that Perciavalle had ill intent, and that Lauren herself testified that no harm had been done.

Prosecutors projected the text message video on a large wall during the December preliminary hearing, showing a nude woman urinating while swinging on a swing.

Townsend wrote that the text message accidentally was sent as a group message labeled “Kenny Watkins” and was never intended for Lauren. Townsend also noted that Lauren testified at Perciavalle’s preliminary hearing that detectives threatened her and her parents if she didn’t cooperate with the prosecution.

Townsend wrote that he will call Lozier to testify at the hearing, which will make him a witness and that he is legally prohibited from prosecuting a case in which he is a witness.

“As such, it is respectfully requested that this Court disqualify the Beaver County District Attorney’s Office from prosecuting this case,” he concluded.


Listen To Perciavalle’s Recording:


(The first voice heard clearly on the recording (at the 12sec mark) is Donald Couch, the second louder voice is Joseph Perciavalle. The audio recording was played in its entirety as evidence in open court by the Beaver County District Attorney’s Office during a preliminary hearing held for Joseph Perciavalle on Dec. 4, 2018. It was also included as an exhibit as part of a Petition for Writ of Habeas Corpus filed with the Beaver County Court of Common Pleas on Feb. 25, 2019, by defense attorney Steven Townsend.)

BeaverCountian.com’s John Paul contributed to this report.

See Also:
Investigative Report: Aliquippa Officer Claims DA Lozier’s Office Retaliated After He Provided Evidence Of Corruption

Acting Aliquippa Police Chief Joe Perciavalle Arrested By Beaver County Detectives

EXCLUSIVE: Acting Aliquippa Chief Says Txt Msg Was An Accident – Calls His Arrest By DA’s Office Retaliation

County Detectives Arrest Aliquippa Assistant Police Chief Again – This Time For Alleged Wiretap Act Violation

EXCLUSIVE: Former Aliquippa Patrolman Was Investigating Possible Departmental Ties To Drug Rings When Fired

Lori Boone
Lori Boone (DeLauter) has more than 20 years of experience in investigative and community journalism. She’s won more than a dozen regional, state and national journalism awards.

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Janel
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Janel

amazed at the foul language and disrespect for the mentally challenged people. Shows the lack of education leadership and couth. Disgusting!!!!! Lack of professionalism.

Moondoggie
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Moondoggie

And this folks is what’s called “Aliquippa’s Finest”………………..this explains alot. Andy and Barney they ain’t.

The Courthouse Janitor
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The Courthouse Janitor

Couch! What colorful metaphors. Your mom would be proud.

Gray Squirrel
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Gray Squirrel

Besides the obvious its no wonder Defense Attorney Steven Townsend wants this case removed from Beaver County prosecutors office, if Lozier is Naive enough to really thinks this recording was made in the same vehicle , or for that matter ANY person with a single brain cell believes it was, I have the Deed to the Brookland Bridge an i’d like to sell, or perhaps you’re more interested in Ocean front property in Arizona , i have two lots for sale.

Its so obvious its from seperate vehicles , Perciavalle voice is loud an clear, while Couch is at a noticeable distance , even the radio chatter from Couch car is distant , at the end of recording its obvious they drive away in separate vehicles , do we really want 4 more years of this ASS CLOWN Lozier .

Anyone can Record Police and Public Officials in the performance of their Duties ( Couch was on the clock ) , nobody has an expectation of privacy while in Public , this has been ruled on by the 3rd Circuit , an the United States Supreme Court .

https://www.aclupa.org/issues/policepractices/your-right-record-and-observe-police/taking-photos-video-and-audio/
http://www.dmlp.org/legal-guide/recording-police-officers-and-public-officials

Accordingtome
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Accordingtome

I’ll leave the commentary about the character of the quiptown boys in blue to others….suffice it to say that in this case they’ve earned the vernacular nickname of pigs.

Instead, I’ll comment on Mr. Townsend’s defense strategy. This is a perfect example of what happens when an attorney with experience in criminal law just completely runs over our district attorney due to his lack of experience in criminal law. When an ambulance chaser becomes the DA and then after close to four years on the job still lacks even a scintilla of experience in the courtroom, you’ll continue to see case after case where he’s outsmarted by defense counsel’s strategy.

It’s been a very long four year experiment and I think that the results are pretty clear. Chasing ambulances is not the same as chasing criminals….it’s time to send Stonewall back to trying to follow the medic rescue trucks to the emergency room.

By the way, kudos, Mr. Townsend. Very nicely played.

Courthouse observer
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Courthouse observer

Everyone keep in mind that unless the democrats come out in large numbers that “ambulance chaser” will be re-elected. It’s one thing to complain on this outlet but unless voters are energized it’s all for naught. Do voters other than the readers here really know or care about the DA’s incompetence? If not expect more of the same.

Icanread
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Icanread

Any Republican who votes for Lozier is an idiot. Sometimes you need to face the reality that your party’s candidate is crap. I don’t think all Democrats will be voting for Amadio. I don’t think all Republicans will be voting for Guy, Lozier, and Cebran Nederland. Just because the party offers up a crappy candidate, that doesn’t mean you vote for him.

Raven
Member
Raven

What a staggering display of ignorance and gutter language from the mouth of a cop. How the hell could such a profane lowbrow level of behavior be hired into any responsible job? It does, though, explain how and what has happened in that corrupt place. I am assuming that these people walk on all fours with knuckles dragging, because little else could explain it.

I WON DEE-WON
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I WON DEE-WON

Joey got hired by DEE-WON because his connection to DEE-WON is a piece of related ass that Joey knocked up! Nobody in their right mind would hire this wannabe white boy onto their police force, let alone promote him to ASSt. Chief. Joey, your heart might be in the right place, but you really need to clean up your act! (Dick pic?) Really?!

ThaGooch
Guest
ThaGooch

It wasn’t s dick pic for one and two, “piece of related ass that Joey knocked up” is very disrespectful to the woman. If I had to guess you’re another hating/pussy ass cop or a “DEE-WON” hater. You should comment on the article at hand instead of slandering.

Raven
Member
Raven

The “unstated” preferred IQ for a cop is about 85, low average, though the average range of 90 to 100 is advertised for academy entrance. Smart cops can have a tough time by getting bored, arguing, not taking orders, being ambitious, etc. Sir Percy seems to fit that lower goal, but I wouldn’t apply to the State Police, FBI or Secret Service. No, stick with knocking heads in Linmar, and you’ll do just fine.

Dummy
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Dummy

This is Perciavalles mentality. He’s a wanna be thug who got hired because of the mayoress another wanna be. Cops aren’t the smartest if no one has figured this out yet.