66-year-old man accused of beating, stalking woman, released from jail
The 47-year-old woman told police that Oliver G. Dufrene, of 203 Baker Street, had been stalking her for two months and that although she never reported previous incidents, she fears for her safety, because she believes Dufrene to have some mental disabilities.
According to police reports, the woman was home alone and asleep when she was awakened by the sound of someone banging on her door. She later told police she believed it was Dufrene and ignored the knocking hoping that he would just go away.
But he didn't.
Officials say Dufrene allegedly cut the power off to the victim's home.
When the electricity went off, the woman went to the door and saw Dufrene flipping the switches in the meter power box. She told police she then went outside with a flashlight and confronted Dufrene telling him to get off her property. An argument started and Dufrene grabbed her and threw her to the ground from where she stood on the top steps of her porch, then he struck her in the chest and the back.
Detectives observed several red marks on the woman's back and chest areas. She began to scream for help according to the report and someone called the sheriff's office.
Dufrene fled the scene on a bicycle.
Dufrene was then questioned by detectives and stated that he suspected the victim of doing drugs. He said he was just trying to 'serve up a little justice.'
Dufrene told police that despite being told several times by the victim not to return to her house, he often bought her food and gifts. He told detectives that he had called the sheriff's office to report the suspected drug activity, but that nothing was done.
Lt. Pam Schmitt, an officer for the St. Charles Parish Sheriff's office says victims need to be alert when they think they're being stalked.
"Keep good records; note the number of times the person called and the number of times the person you believe is stalking you has made contact,"she said.
With all of the modern tools readily accessible, Schmitt says to try to make a video of the stalker.
"These days you can get little tiny cameras that can capture the person on film," she said. "And this can be used as evidence when we make an arrest."
Schmitt says stalkers usually are older than 20-years old and usually result after a violent relationship.
Schmitt says excessive phone calls from the person are also a form of harassment.
"Sending text messages, calling several hours several times a day in a row, then taking a break, maybe even for a couple of days and then starting the cycle all over again is a form of harassment and should be reported to the police," she said.
The victim told police that for two months she had had problems with Dufrene showing up at her residence after repeatedly being told not to.
Louisiana laws about stalking say that upon a second conviction, occurring within seven years of the prior conviction for stalking, the offender shall be imprisoned for 180 days to three years, and may be fined up to $5000.
"There was a lady in Destrehan living in Ormond that I worked with who was being stalked for a year by her ex-boyfriend," Schmitt said. "We'd arrest him and he'd get out of jail and do the same thing to her again." Eventually, Schmitt said the lady moved away from St. Charles Parish.
Schmitt says sometimes stalking can lead to other forms of violence; vandalism, where personal property belonging to the individual being stalked is destroyed.
"Anything that is considered abusive or obsessive behavior needs to be reported to sheriff's office," she said.
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