Savannah, GA

Savannah man allegedly destroyed Douglas woman's belongings with bleach because she "ruined his heart"

Daily Coffee Press
Stephen Brett GallettaPhoto byCoffee County Jail

A Savannah man was arrested in Coffee County after allegedly destroying almost all of a woman’s belongings by pouring chemicals on her clothes and all over the kitchen and slashing her furniture and paintings. The incident reportedly stemmed from the suspect, 39-year-old Stephen Galletta, believing the victim was unfaithful to him after reading her diary.

The Daily Coffee Press obtained a copy of the incident report, which says deputies were made aware of the situation on May 19 after being dispatched to a residence on Batten Road. This is the second time deputies have been called to the home, per their report, "due to the suspect damaging property in the residence."

The report further states that deputies spoke to a 40-year-old woman at the home, who reported that her "friend," Galletta, came to her home to help her move during her lunch break. She stated that she "didn’t really want him there while she wasn’t going to be there, but let him in and went back to work." Soon after, according to the report, Galletta began texting and calling her "about a guy she wrote about in her diary and was accusing her of cheating on him."

The victim reported that Galletta then claimed he was "going to destroy her fish aquariums." According to the victim, when she left work, she went to her new home "to give Galletta time to calm down," and when she returned to her old residence, Galletta was no longer there.

However, according to the deputy, when the victim walked into her home, she "noticed everything on the inside was destroyed." She said she then called 911 to report the damage and Galletta’s parents.

The deputy stated that the victim walked him through the residence, where he first noticed a couch in the living room with a large slash across the back of it, and saw that various chemicals had been poured out in the kitchen.

In the victim’s bedroom, the deputy reported seeing that all the victim’s clothes had been cut, thrown around the room, and "seemed to have had bleach poured on them due to white stains already showing on various pieces of clothing scattered around the room. He also reported noticing empty bottles of acetone and Tiki Torch fuel lying around the room, as well as smelling a "very strong odor of various chemicals in the bedroom."

The report states that the deputy he also observed large cuts in the bed and multiple pillows, which also seemed to have bleach poured on them. According to the report, further objects were damaged in the master bedroom, including a black vanity and more cut-up clothing items. Additionally, there were reportedly five pieces of art painted by the victim scattered across the home that had large cuts in them.

Galletta allegedly called the victim while he and another reporting deputy were speaking with her to ask if she had "involved his parents in the situation." The deputy said that Galletta claimed the victim was "trying to make him lose his job" and that they were "even now."

According to the report, Galletta also told the victim he was not going to reimburse her for the damaged property because he “can’t be paid back for her betraying him.” The victim then asked Galletta how he could “justify doing this to her house” and Galletta argued that she was not faithful to him.

The report stated that the victim told Galletta that he ruined everything she owned, to which Galletta responded, “Yeah, you ruined my heart.”

The deputy reported that Galletta called back a second time and told the victim that if she wanted to keep her job, then she would "keep him out of this and clean up her mess." He was also said to have asked the victim if she called the cops, and then said, "Well, I’ve already told somebody what happened, and if anything happens to me, they will be doing my dirty work."

Ultimately, Galletta was taken into custody on charges of criminal damage to property in the second degree and harassing phone calls.

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