Judge says woman tied to disturbing Livingston Parish rape case can't leave state
LIVINGSTON PARISH - A woman arrested in a Livingston Parish rape when she stepped off a cruise ship in New Orleans will not be permitted to travel outside the state, a judge ruled Friday.
Former Livingston Parish Sheriff's Office employee Melanie Curtin, 41, had bonded out of jail after being charged with first-degree rape and video voyeurism. Her charges involve adults but are connected to Cynthia and Dennis Perkins, a couple charged with child porn, rape, attempted rape, sexual battery and video voyeurism.
Curtin's bond restrictions limited her to traveling only within Louisiana. She asked that the judge allow her to leave the state due to threats for her safety and her work.
Curtin's attorney, John McLindon said that Curtin can work remotely.
Judge Brian Abels ultimately denied the request. He cited her 14 cruise vacations over the past 18 months indicated that she had the means to leave to avoid prosecution and denied her request.
"The point of the cruises was that this was not out of the ordinary," Curtin's attorney John McLindon said. "It wasn't something that she did to get away. She goes on cruises a lot like a lot of people go to Destin. We'd gladly turn in her passport that's not an issue."
Curtin's bond was set at $350,000, and GPS monitoring was a condition of her release. The sheriff's office says Absolute Best Bail Bonds, a commercial bonding company owned by David Babin, posted her bail.
Curtin had been employed with the sheriff's office in 2011 and 2012.
The Livingston Parish Sheriff's Office released a statement about her previous employment there:
"Melanie Curtin has not been employed with the Sheriff’s office since August 13, 2012. She worked for the Sheriff’s Office for roughly 18 months in the tax department. She terminated her employment with this office on August 13, 2012."
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