Investigation continues into death of woman found dead in attorney's bathtub

Posted: June 12, 2013

AS A GRAND JURY continues to piece together the details surrounding the May 25 death of a paralegal found in the bathtub of her lawyer boss and reported lover, her family is moving toward closure of another sort.

A Philadelphia judge on Monday ordered that the remains of Julia Papazian Law be released to her mother for burial.

Law, who died days before her 27th birthday, was found facedown in bathwater by a maintenance man at the Rittenhouse Square home of A. Charles Peruto, a prominent Philadelphia criminal-defense lawyer.

Peruto, 58, has said he was at the Jersey Shore at the time of Law's death.

The city Medical Examiner's Office has not released the manner nor cause of death and will not do so until police have completed their investigation, said Jeff Moran, a spokesman for the city Health Department.

Despite the judge's ruling releasing Law's remains to her mother, Moran said, toxicology tests are still being conducted from samples.

"They have what they need to perform the tests; there's no need to retain the body," he said.

There were no signs of trauma to Law's body nor a struggle in the home, authorities have said, and no suspects have been linked to the death.

During Monday's court hearing, Law's mother, Laureen Law, of Absecon, N.J., told Common Pleas Judge John Herron that Law had been in therapy and had been hospitalized for eating disorders and alcoholism, the Inquirer reported.

Sources have said that Law's blood-alcohol level was five times the legal limit to drive at the time of her death.


On Twitter: @MensahDean

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