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A Connecticut man has been arrested for unlawfully imprisoning and starving his adult sister.
According to a press release, Arthur Gauvin, 58, was initially arrested Thursday evening after authorities received an anonymous call stating their concern for the 56-year-old woman. After he was questioned and released, Gauvin was arrested a second time for threatening his daughter in front of police officers, telling her she would be kicked out of their home if she spoke to police officers.
In a video provided by Fox Connecticut via the New York Post, neighbors all seemed to be aware that something amiss in the Gauvin home. Many of the residents in the area silently kept an eye on the family.
One neighbor stated that she often went by the home and looked in to make sure everything was alright and see if anyone needed help, but the family painted over their windows so she couldn't see in.
According to the New York Post, officers were called to the home in 2010 and 2012 for minor issues. At the time, Gauvin’s sister was present and seemed to be fine, however that was not the case when he was arrested Thursday evening.
Gauvin’s sister, who neighbors noted was disabled, was rescued from a bolted room that was filled with urine and feces. Officers immediately had to leave the room and send someone in who was wearing a hazardous material suit to investigate the situation.
“Your eyes immediately watered. The smell … awful. We had to change uniforms after leaving because the stench was in them. I served on the New Haven police force for 22 years before retiring and coming here last July. I never saw anything like this in my years with New Haven. I was absolutely shocked,” Officer Lisa Wexler said of the scene.
The reason Gauvin kept his sister locked up was due to ownership of the home, which his sister once owned. In recent times, however, Gauvin has become his sister’s caretaker.
"Apparently the female victim signed the house over to Gauvin approximately seven years ago. Gauvin then was responsible for taking care of the victim for nine years before she could receive any services from the State of Connecticut,” the press release read.
Gauvin was initially charged with unlawful restraint, reckless endangerment and cruelty to persons. After threatening his daughter, the additional charge of tampering with a witness was added.