Amelia family opens up about father's death, missing mother

Published: Jan. 25, 2016 at 11:04 PM EST|Updated: Feb. 5, 2016 at 3:37 AM EST
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AMELIA, VA (WWBT) - An Amelia woman may be spending her 68th birthday in danger. Olene Brooks has been missing from her home since Thursday, which was when investigators found her husband's body bound inside of their home. Deputies said they know who is behind it and believe he is armed and dangerous.

It all started with some tense moments inside the family's home which quickly escalated leaving one man dead, his wife abducted and the suspect on the run.

"He hit her and knocked her glasses off at my house so she won't have her glasses on," Sheila Smith said while crying regarding her missing mother. She said she was there when her sister's ex-boyfriend, Dana William, paid them a visit. "We were held hostage at gunpoint…We were eventually tied in separate rooms with zip ties," Smith recalled.

Shortly afterwards, her mother Olene Brooks went missing. Just down the road, deputies found her husband, Woodell Brooks, a former paramedic, dead. "We always talked twice a day," Corey Brooks said fighting tears as he recalled his father's last words to him. "He told me he loved me. That's the last time I talked to him," he said.

The 43-year-old suspect was released from prison last summer following a rape conviction. The registered sex offender was also found guilty of violating a protective order. He has two children with Olene Brook's daughter. "He's capable of sudden fits of rage. He's also calculated with his rage," Sherri William said. "He wanted to punish the family and he knew he could punish the family by getting to my mom and my stepdad," Smith added.

Deputies said William may be driving the victims' 2010 silver Dodge Caravan.

In a sad twist, Tuesday would have been Woodell Brooks birthday. Monday is his wife's birthday, both turning 68 years old.

"Happy birthday mom. It's not ideal but happy birthday. We love you and we're praying. We know that you belong to God but we sure would like to have you back with us," Stephanie Caudill added.

"We just need your help trying to find the person that's responsible for all this pain," Smith added.

Investigators say it's possible the suspect may have traveled outside of the area. Relatives of the victim say William also has ties to Massachusetts.

Recent snow forced the closure of the medical examiner's office, so the cause of Woodell Brook's death has not been determined. The family has not set funeral arrangements yet.

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