Elderly couple’s deaths appear to be ‘targeted act’

LACASSINE — Authorities are investigating a double homicide after finding the bodies of an elderly Lacassine couple in their bedroom Sunday.

The couple, Walter Joseph Gotreaux, 72, and his wife, Darlene Cecelia Gotreaux, 70, were found dead in their home on U.S. 90, just west of Lacassine, after deputies went to the residence to check on them after receiving a welfare concern from a neighbor.

"Our hearts go out to the family," Sheriff Ivy Woods said during a press conference Monday. "There’s people in this world that do very vicious acts and we’re going to try our best to put those people in jail."

Woods calmed the community’s fears saying that no one else in the community has reason for worry.

The murders appeared to have been a "targeted act" toward the Gotreaux family, he said.

"The community is nervous," he said. "It’s a very quiet community and it’s not every day you have a double homicide. They are calling with concerns and we are going to try to help them out with everything we can."

He urged residents to go about their daily activities.
 He said investigators were following every lead possible and interviewing those who knew the couple.

Authorities are not offering any information on how or when the couple may have been killed citing an ongoing investigation.

The couple was last seen alive early Sunday morning by a farmhand who had driven them to Our Lady Queen of Heaven Catholic Church in Lake Charles for Eucharistic Adoration because Walter Gotreaux was not feeling well, Woods said.

The farmhand, who lives nearby, told authorities he had dropped the couple off at home some time around 2 a.m. after they returned home from church. He said he helped the couple inside and left, but told authorities everything appeared fine at that time.

The farmhand contacted the Sheriff’s Office around 3 p.m. Sunday after he could not contact Mr. Gotreaux, Woods said.

"Mr. Gotreaux has a neighbor that works with him helping him feeding the cattle and everyday little chores and Mr. Gotreaux wasn’t answering the phone and he tried several times, so he got nervous and called 911," Woods said. "We went out and surveyed the property and seen that the door was kicked in and we went in and discovered them."

As of a 1 p.m. press conference Monday, authorities said they are uncertain if anything is missing from the residence because it had not been released to the family as it was still considered an investigative crime scene. There was no obvious sign of a struggle inside the home, Woods said.

Chief Deputy Chris Ivey said the Calcasieu Parish Forensic Investigative Unit from the crime lab and Jeff Davis Parish detectives worked through the night Sunday gathering evidence at the scene and interviewing persons who knew the victims.

Mr. Gotreaux is an insurance salesman, who also raises cattle, horses and mules in the Lacassine area. He is the former president of the Cajun French Music Association Lake Charles chapter.

He and his wife were well-known and liked in the community where they were active in school and church gatherings, the Optimist Club and the Cajun French Music Association.
This is the second murder in Lacassine this year.

In June, the body of Victor Paul Martin, 33, was found behind a log on a dirt road in a wooded area near his home on Melanson Road, just south of U.S. 90 in Lacassine. Authorities said he had been fatally shot at his residence and his body moved.

Matthew Clement Markwood, 33, of Lake Charles was later arrested on second-degree murder charge, obstruction of justice and aggravated battery in connection with Martin’s death.

Anyone who may have seen anything, or may have a security camera showing the highway near the victims’ home, is asked to call the Sheriff’s Office at 337-824-3850.””Double murder graphic

life

Speckled belly goose pot pie: It’s what’s for dinner

Jim Beam

Jim Beam column: Bridges major budget topic

Local News

Online sports betting begins Friday in La.

Business

UPDATE: Honoré: Explosion proof EPA inspection team needed at every plant

Crime

Second arrest made in December shooting

Business News

UPDATE: Six injured in plant explosion

Business News

BREAKING: Chemical plant explosion in Sulphur

Local News

Task force chairman: Edwards’ proposed budget doesn’t offer enough funding for I-10 bridge

Local News

Qualifying underway for March 26 election

Local News

FEMA announces extension for Laura, Delta housing

Local News

UPDATE: Payton resigns as coach of New Orleans Saints

Local News

Biden administration officially withdraws vaccine rule

Business

Hunting, fishing app the ‘Airbnb for sportsmen’

Business

Names in the News: People shaping the future of Lake Area business

Business News

Mark Judson column: Nonprofit theft lessons learned

Business

It’s tax time: What to know before you file

Business

Woman guilty of fraud barred from doing taxes in Louisiana

Business News

After delays, Lucky Delta set to be torn down

National Sports

Source: Coach Sean Payton resigns from New Orleans Saints

Crime

1/25: Calcasieu Parish Sheriff announces arrest list

Local News

Cowboys look to use home stand to climb Southland standings

Local News

Man killed in auto-pedestrian accident

Local News

‘We can do better’: Residents say not enough coastal protection in SW La.

Crime

Rash of school bus part thefts in Jeff Davis