Newspaper article Sarasota Herald Tribune

Venice Policeman Suspended

Newspaper article Sarasota Herald Tribune

Venice Policeman Suspended

Article excerpt

COMMENTS: He will serve 40 hours of unpaid leave for sexually charged talk


A Venice Police Department sergeant was disciplined after an internal investigation found he had made sexually inappropriate remarks to fellow officers, including telling a female officer that she had "birthing hips."

Sgt. Ronald Perisho, who has been on the force since 2001, will serve a 40-hour unpaid suspension next week after the investigation that also resulted in him being reassigned.

Investigators determined that Perisho made several sexually charged comments at a training exercise and made inappropriate comments about dating fellow officers' sisters and mothers.

Police Chief Tom McNulty said he agrees with Perisho's punishment, which he, Director of Administrative Services Alan Bullock, City Manager Edward Lavallee and attorney Mark Levitt handed down.

"(His behavior) was definitely inappropriate," McNulty said. "I didn't appreciate it, and I don't condone that from anyone in the department -- especially from supervisors."

Bullock said it is rare for city officials to conduct this type of disciplinary meeting and that these meetings are typically reserved for major disciplinary cases. He said about three of these meetings happen each year between all the city's departments.

It was the first time Perisho had been investigated and disciplined by the department. Attempts to reach Perisho for comment were unsuccessful.

The first incident happened on May 27, when Perisho and his night- shift squad were participating in a service training exercise. It was organized so officers could learn how to physically protect themselves against an assailant.

When the group was doing a butterfly stretch, which limbers the inner-thighs, Perisho allegedly looked over at a female officer and made a comment about her flexibility, which he credited to her "birthing hips. …

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