EATONTON, Ga. — A judge has denied bond for a former police officer accused of shooting to death his wife earlier this year at their home on Lake Oconee in Putnam County.
Michael Seth Perrault, who is jailed in Jones County, appeared through live stream video conference before Ocmulgee Judicial Circuit Superior Court Judge Terry A. Massey on Tuesday morning.
The 43-year-old Perrault, who was a rookie patrolman with the Eatonton Police Department for less than a year, is accused of murdering his wife, Amanda Pardue Perrault, 44.
Amanda Perrault was found shot to death on Feb. 3 in the couple’s master bedroom of their home on Long Island Drive.
Before Judge Massey denied bond in the case, Ocmulgee Judicial Circuit District Attorney Stephen A. Bradley summarized the basic facts of the case. He was joined at the bond hearing by Assistant District Attorney T. Wright Barksdale.
“The defendant ask to be released on bond, because of the COVID-19 risks, and because his lawyers can’t adequately communicate with him because of the restriction at the jail,” Bradley said.
Perrault’s defense attorneys, Bethany and William Lavingno, of The Law Firm of Lavingno & Kenney in Conyers, argued their client should be granted a bond.
Repeated attempts to reach defense attorneys at their office on Wednesday morning were unsuccessful.
“They (defense attorneys) argued that the case deserves a bond, but we ask the court not to give Mr. Perrault a bond, citing the severity of the case, the lack of ties to the community, and the fact that he was out on bond when he was charged with this crime,” Bradley said.
The case has not yet been presented to a grand jury for jurors to consider whether or not to return a murder indictment, Bradley said.
“It was scheduled, but because of the judicial emergency declared by [Georgia Supreme Court] Chief Justice [Harold] Melton and [Ocmulgee Superior Court] Chief Judge [William] Prior Jr., all grand juries have been held off, so we’ve not been able to present this case to the grand jury,” Bradley said.
The district attorney said they had planned to present the case to a grand jury in Putnam County more than two months ago, but because of the pandemic such did not happen.
“I assured the court as soon as we have the ability that this case is prepared for grand jury and we’re ready to go,” Bradley said. “I just don’t have a grand jury that can hear it yet. We’re hoping that won’t be too far in the future, but we realize it won’t be right around the corner, either.”
The murder case was investigated by the Putnam County Sheriff’s Office and spearheaded by Sheriff Howard R. Sills. The sheriff’s office received assistance in working the crime scene from the Georgia Bureau of Investigation Crime Region 6 Office in Milledgeville.
After his arrest as a suspect in his wife’s killing, Perrault was fired from his job as a police officer with the Eatonton Police Department by Chief Kent Lawrence.
Just six days before the fatal shooting, Seth Perrault was arrested on misdemeanor domestic violence charges involving his wife. Those crimes allegedly happened on Jan. 28 at the couple’s home, authorities said.
Perrault was later released from the Putnam County Jail in Eatonton after posting $1,500 bond.