Florida

The lawyer sent angry text messages to a child. Now, he’s doing life in prison

Joseph Pallante III
Joseph Pallante III Florida Dept. of Corrections

A Florida attorney was disbarred, a career buried by his conviction on 41 counts of child rape, child molestation and child pornography possession.

The child in these crimes by Melbourne attorney, former Brevard Sheriff’s deputy and University of Miami law school graduate Joseph Pallante III was a relative by marriage.

And bullying text messages from the 49-year-old Pallante III unlocked the door.

“You act as if you are embarrassed of me, you’re no good, you are only going to be trailer trash.”

Court documents say that’s what Feb. 11, 2014, text messages from Pallante to the girl said “in substance.” Pallante, the girl told her math teacher, felt she acted as if she was embarrassed by him when she ran into him at Walgreens.

As the math teacher walked the girl to the guidance counselor, court documents say, she sensed it was worth asking, “Does he touch you?”

“He beats me.”

“No, is he touching you in a sexual way?”

The girl denied that, at first. But, the court documents say, she said later to the guidance counselor: “He makes me give him” oral sex “sometimes.”

In a written statement quoted in court documents, the girl stated, “The last time I had to give him a blow job was a couple of weeks ago because my mom wasn’t home. If I don’t give him a blow job or what he wants, then he gets mad at me and picks me up and pulls my hair then throws me across the house.”

The statement ended with, “Also, to go along with the sexual abuse, he had tried and half succeeded in licking my private parts, but I’ve kicked him off. He started the sexual abuse when I was about 10 years old.”

In Pallante’s probable cause affidavit, Satellite Beach police reported that he “would masturbate in front of the victim” and later forced her to fondle him.

Also, Pallante, the affidavit said, “made the juvenile victim watch pornographic videos of persons having oral sex on a couple of occasions as to enhance her performance.”

Teya Pallante.jpg
Teya Pallante Florida Dept. of Corrections

The girl had told the guidance counselor that Pallante’s wife, Teya Pallante, “drinks an awful lot, so when I tell her stuff, she doesn’t remember.”

Alcohol fueled what Satellite Beach cops found on a computer snagged from the Pallante home during the investigation.

“I observed at least three videos that showed the defendant, Teya Pallante, naked with exposed genitals and obviously intoxicated,” an investigator wrote in Teya Pallante’s probable cause affidavit. “One video showed the intoxicated naked juvenile dancing. (Joseph Pallante) asks the juvenile if she is drunk. The juvenile replies yes, and then she is asked how many ‘shots’ she had. The juvenile replied ‘three.’

Teya Pallante “is present on the couch and does not stop or verbally oppose the consumption.”

In another video, Joseph Pallante asks his naked relative, as she sits on a couch drinking a Keystone beer next to her mother, “why are you floating?”

The affidavit says the girl answers, “Because I’m f----- up.”

Teya Pallante did 17 months in prison on three counts of use of a child in a sexual performance and one count of child neglect. She got out on Sept. 12, 2017, and is on probation until Sept. 11, 2027, and must register as a sex offender.

A Brevard jury convicted Joseph Pallante III of one count of providing obscene material to a minor, two counts of rape by an adult on a victim under 12, three counts of rape on a minor by a custodial family member, eight counts of lewd and lascivious molestation by an adult on a victim under 12, two counts of lewd and lascivious exhibition by an adult on a victim between 12 and 16 years of age, and 26 counts of child pornography possession.

He has been sentenced to life in prison.

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