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Palmerton man heads to court in assault case

Published October 10. 2013 05:00PM

A Palmerton man accused of the indecent assault of a woman will have his case settled in Carbon County court.

Franklin Zerby, 61, was scheduled to have a preliminary hearing Wednesday before District Judge William Kissner of Palmerton.

Zerby waived his right to a hearing, and will appear before the Carbon County Court of Common Pleas for a pretrial status conference at 8:30 a.m. Nov. 14.

Zerby faces charges of two counts of indecent assault, and one count each of simple assault-attempt, aggravated assault, and resisting arrest.

He remains in Carbon County Prison in lieu of $50,000 straight bail.

According to an affidavit of probable cause filed by Palmerton patrolman Shawn Leadbetter:

On Sept. 12, Leadbetter was dispatched to an apartment along Delaware Avenue to take a report of a female who was assaulted, according to the affidavit.

Upon arrival, Leadbetter spoke with the victim, who stated to him that at about 3:30 p.m., she was taken into a man's apartment, where she was assaulted by that man, the affidavit says.

The victim said the perpetrator lives in the same apartment complex.

The victim explained in further detail that this male was trying to make sexual advances toward her.

When Leadbetter was walking the victim down the hallway and outside to bring her down to the borough police station for a formal interview, the victim said that the man who assaulted her was walking from the rear parking lot of the apartment complex and into the hallway.

Leadbetter attempted to speak with him, at which time the man attempted to shoulder him into a wall, subsequently having a struggle ensue on the ground into the rear parking lot.

The affidavit says Leadbetter was able to get one handcuff on the left wrist of the male, then the male swung his right arm up in an attempt to strike him in the face. Leadbetter was able to get control of the male, at which time he was arrested.

The man, identified as Zerby, transported the victim from the station to Palmerton Hospital for an evaluation.

A witness told she was sitting on the steps that lead into the hallway from the rear parking lot of the apartment complex, and observed Zerby grab the victim by the arm and pull her into his apartment.

The witness contacted police once the victim was able to leave the apartment.

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