Daughter charged after father found dead in St. Martinville home

News

ST. MARTINVILLE, La. (KLFY)— St. Martinville police have arrested the daughter of a man found dead in his home Monday.

Police say relatives of 65-year-old Alfred Batiste reported him as missing Sunday.

They began their search at the home he shared with his daughter, Shonia Batiste.

“Our officers made contact with Shonia Batiste. They asked Shonia, where is your father? She told us he was vacationing with relatives in Texas,” Adam Touchet with the St. Martinville Police said.

Shonia would not allow police to search their home and in fact told police to leave, and from that an investigation into the Batiste’s personal life drew suspicions.

“Members of the community say there is a history of her being violent towards Mr. Batiste. There were also members of the community that told us he could very well be in that back bedroom. That’s where his body would be located,” Touchet added.

Police returned to Shonia and Alfred Batiste’s home Monday with a search warrant.

“Once we got Shonia Batiste out of the bedroom, our officers were able to get inside and start investigating, and we found the body immediately,” Touchet told News Ten.

Alfred Batiste’s nephew, who lives next door, says it shocked him when police found his uncle’s body inside their home.

“He was back in the corner behind the headboard with clothes covered on him, and the daughter was sleeping in there while he was dead,” Carlos Linden said.

Investigators believe Shonia Batiste had been living in the home with her father’s dead body for at least three weeks.

“That was confirmed in that autopsy today that he’s been in that bedroom for quite a while. Over a few weeks,” Touchet said.

An autopsy report said Alfred Batiste’s body was so badly decomposed, his cause of death is undetermined.

More tests are being done to find out how Batiste died.

Shonia Batiste was arrested Tuesday for obstruction of justice.

Records show she was released from jail Wednesday.

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