Arceneaux kidnapper: ‘We gonna die together.’ _lowres

Advocate staff photo by BRYAN TUCK -- This abandoned home in West Lafayette Parish was the site of a showdown following a kidnapping in November that left the kidnapper dead of multiple gunshot wounds.

Over the two November days he held her hostage, Scott Thomas kept a knife near ex-girlfriend Bethany Arceneaux’s throat, and repeatedly told her that if he couldn’t have her, nobody would.

“You not gonna live no happy life. … I’m not going to jail! And you not goin’ live no happy life.

“We gonna die together,” Thomas said.

Thomas was wrong. He died alone, bleeding to death in a dark, dank abandoned home in west Lafayette Parish after Arceneaux’s cousin Marcus Arceneaux shot Thomas multiple times in a rescue.

A new document detailing Arceneaux’s captivity from Nov. 6 to Nov. 8 was released Monday by the Lafayette Parish District Attorney’s Office.

The office last week released hundreds of pages in the case but held onto 52-transcribed pages of interviews that Arceneaux had with Lafayette Parish sheriff’s detectives.

Assistant District Attorney Pat Magee said prosecutors talked to her before last week’s release of the investigative file.

Magee said Arceneaux told his office that she’d not given media interviews and wanted her privacy protected.

As a result, Magee said, the District Attorney’s Office held on to the pages detailing Arceneaux’s interview and took extra time to research privacy and public records laws to determine what to release.

“We felt we had an obligation under the law to redact anything that we were statutorily and constitutionally required to,” Magee said.

Some lines in the Arceneaux interview were blacked out when it was released Monday.

Efforts Monday to contact Thomas’ family members in Leonville and Sunset for comment were unsuccessful.

In Arceneaux’s interview with sheriff’s detectives Ben Suire and Michael Fincher, she said Thomas was long abusive to her — from when they lived together in his hometown of Leonville to when she tried to break free. When she arrived Nov. 6 outside Archie’s Day Care on Madeline Street where their little boy stayed during the day, Arceneaux knew from experience that Thomas was about to turn mean.

The trigger, she said: She resisted a hug and kiss from him.

Enraged, Thomas threw Arceneaux with their baby in her arms into his old white Buick.

There, as Arceneaux fought him, one of many who were watching the fight grabbed the boy.

Thomas sped off with Arceneaux. Later, he ditched the Buick on Anderson Road, and the two set out on foot.

“He had his knife and he would drag me by my hair through the woods ’cause at one point I saw the cops and I tried to run,” Arceneaux said.

Later the pair stumbled across the abandoned home, mostly hidden by vegetation. Inside Arceneaux would go through almost two days of physical and psychological trauma.

Early signs of trouble

The pair knew each other before they started dating a few years ago, producing a child during their time together. After moving into a Leonville home with him, Arceneaux said, she learned quickly of Thomas’ Jekyll and Hyde persona and hair-trigger temper.

“And it’s like Scott would be two different people,” Arceneaux said. “He would be a good person, like he was sweet. He was good, he just had a lot of issues.”

“I don’t know what was goin’ on through his head,” she said.

Arceneaux said Thomas used furniture to barricade her inside the Leonville home, which she said Thomas had done to other women who had babies for him.

“It’s like he wanted me all to his self. I couldn’t go nowhere,” Arceneaux said.

“He would take my (car) keys. He would take … my phone. And he would make me stay in my room and talk about killin’ us,” Arceneaux said.

When she left him, taking the baby, he continued to threaten her, she said.

“… Looking back, I don’t know why I stayed. Like I can’t understand,” Arceneaux told Suire and Fincher, crying.

The rescue

At one point during the 43-hour ordeal, Arceneaux said Thomas, who grew more paranoid by the hour, believed he had no choice but to kill them both.

“I just feel like he went too far, and he knew it … ’cause he kept saying, ‘I’m not going to jail. I’m NOT goin’ to jail’ and ‘You not bein’ with nobody else,’ ” Arceneaux said.

“So, he kept sayin’ he was gonna kill me. And then he was gonna kill himself,” she said.

During one of the two nights, Thomas held her and cried softly, “You should have loved me. Why didn’t you just love me?” Arceneaux told detectives.

Meanwhile, police and Arceneaux’s family continued to search. At around noon Nov. 8, Arceneaux’s relatives zeroed in on the abandoned home. Armed with a handgun equipped with a flashlight, Marcus Arceneaux shot the lock off the rear door and entered the home.

“I’m hearin’ her hollerin’, ‘Help! He killin’ me! He killin’ me!” Marcus Arceneaux told Detective Fincher.

“I’m like, ‘Beth, where you at?’ ”

He turned on the flashlight attached to his gun and saw Bethany, Thomas and blood everywhere.

His cousin was on top of Thomas, and Thomas continued to stab her.

“I really don’t want to shoot,” Marcus Arceneaux told Fincher. “I’m just trying to get her. I’m like ‘Scott, man stop trippin’! Stop trippin’. Don’t do that.’ ”

In the interview, Marcus Arceneaux remembered shooting Thomas a few times: in the leg, in the ribs and at least once in the chest or head.

According to the autopsy report, Thomas was hit with 11 bullets in the “head, body and extremities.”

Bethany Arceneaux was treated for stab wounds to her face, neck and head.

Marcus Arceneaux was cleared in April of wrong-doing by a Lafayette Parish grand jury, which heard testimony from Bethany Arceneaux.