PLAQUEMINE, La. (WAFB) - A protective order has been issued against Galen Marcantel, the man arrested and facing charges after an elderly woman was discovered in conditions the Iberville Parish Sheriff’s Office describes as “unlivable”.
The 9News Investigators learned the order was issued against Marcantel, 54, one day after detectives did a welfare check at the victim’s home on Delacroix Street on Thursday, Jan. 30.
Under the terms, Marcantel is ordered to not come within 1,000 feet of the victim who is 76 years old. Marcantel is also prohibited from contacting any of the victim’s family members and he also cannot come within 100 yards of the victim’s home.
The order appears to indicate that Marcantel and the victim may have been in some sort of intimate relationship while he was living with her.
An investigation revealed the woman remained in bed, alone in the home for several hours at a time. Pet waste from the 16 animals that were in the home had begun to accumulate in the home and soaked into the woman’s bedding and clothing. Detectives learned Marcantel had been living in the home for months and prevented the woman’s family from visiting her.
The sign outside the home on Delacroix Avenue says, “Private Property" and another sign on the front door tells folks not to knock and not to disturb the property owner.
It is clear whoever put these up did not want anyone to see what was going on inside the home.
Iberville deputies disregarded both signs though when they burst in last week to find the 76-year-old woman covered in waste and left alone with dozens of animals in downright disgusting conditions.
“What we saw was what we thought. Animals and feces in all the corners of the rooms,” said Stassi. “Underneath the bed was trash, litter, feces under the bed and the sheets hadn’t been changed in weeks.”
Sheriff Brett Stassi says it is unclear how long this was going on, but claims the situation was dire.
“To see the condition she was in, it really hurt,” said Stassi. “This was a bad relationship from the start and it got worse.”
Marcantel was picked up on domestic abuse charges in 2011 but the victim later dropped the charges. She then accused her own daughters of abuse.
Five restraining orders the 9News Investigators found allege the daughters at one point or another verbally abused the woman and even kicked and slapped her. WAFB’s Scottie Hunter asked the sheriff if the claims in the restraining orders were valid.
“Even though the day she filled them out, they may have had some validity to them, she never followed through with them to make them permanent at the court system,” said Stassi.
Stassi believes instead of protecting her, the restraining orders may have been what allowed the situation with Marcantel to get so bad for so long.
“That’s a form of separation. He had power of attorney over all her actions," said Stassi. "You systematically separate them from their children and their loved ones and they only have you and we can see how bad this can turn when it becomes like that.”
Marcantel also faces five counts of aggravated cruelty to animals from the Plaquemine Police Department. Those charges are related to this case.
Authorities brought the woman to a hospital before arresting Marcantel. They also removed the animals.