For the first time since its creation, last summer, the commission for the fight against harassment and discrimination of the Socialist Party has definitively excluded from the party a mayor of Puy-de-Dôme. The latter is accused of rape of a minor, we learned, Friday, June 2, from concordant sources and confirming information from Mediapart.
This decision, taken in the name of "party values" was pronounced against Anthony Palermo, now mayor of the commune of Saint-Éloy-les-Mines. The facts date back to 2017, when he was 21 years old and an activist. Chloé Darochas, herself a socialist activist from Montluçon, in Allier, claims to have been forced into a sexual relationship when she was 16 years old. A complaint, closed without further action, had been filed in 2020.
The city councilor "does not dispute having had a sexual relationship" with the young woman, but "believes that it was consented to", underlines the commission in its decision rendered in mid-April. However, "the psychiatric expertise carried out within the framework of the criminal investigation made it possible to establish that the word of the victim could not be called into question in its foundation", adds the commission.
Therefore, the elected "by his behavior towards" the young woman "failed in his duties and obligations as a member of the Socialist Party" from which he is "definitively excluded".
Anthony Palermo said he himself resigned from the party on January 2: "I took this decision because the PS had informed me that it had to hear me when the complaint had been dismissed and I did not want not overhang my comrades from Puy-de-Dôme, ”he justified. On the other hand, he does not intend to resign from his functions as mayor and claims to have "nothing more to do with this party which does not respect a court decision", repeating that his relations with the young woman were consented.
Chloé Darochas, for her part, told AFP: "I am relieved by this exclusion which is welcome, because it was complicated for me to be in the ranks of my executioner and better late than never. “She plans to file a second complaint with civil action with the pole of Cusset, in the Allier.
"For millennia, the word of women has been despised and the victims have suffered the double penalty", reacted Olivier Faure, the first secretary of the PS on Twitter, denouncing a "political environment, essentially male, [which] eyes. For the socialists, I made a commitment never to close them again”.
Another victim, who wishes to remain anonymous, has since filed a complaint on May 11 for the same acts committed in 2014, when she was 16 years old. "I am not aware of this complaint," said Anthony Palermo, assuring that if so, he would "quietly attend any summons so that the light is shed".
If this exclusion is the first, the PS had already sanctioned three candidates, in the last municipal elections in 2020, by refusing to invest them in the name of the party, for cases of sexual or domestic violence, real or supposed.