Family of Seaford woman shot by police speaks out

Further investigation sought into March encounter

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SEAFORD — The family of a Seaford woman fatally shot by police during a March 25 response expressed concern Tuesday about the circumstances of her death, while calling for more investigation into the incident.

Kelly E. Rooks, 51, was in the midst of a mental health crisis when she called 911 for help, according to a news release issued through attorneys representing her family.  The statement claims that a Delaware State Police trooper discharged his weapon through a closed door, killing her.

Troopers had been called to the scene on Danny Drive to assist medical personnel, DSP said earlier.

“As her family, we have serious concerns about the circumstances of Kelly’s death, and we insist upon a credible investigation to uncover the truth,” the news release stated.

“As a human being, she deserved better.”

According to attorney Raeann Warner of the Jacobs & Crumplar law firm, “We would expect that DSP as well as the Attorney General will conduct investigations but we will be independently investigating.

“We have no further comment at this time.”

Ms. Warner asked anyone with information to call her or attorney Patrick Gallagher at 656-5445 or send an email to info@jcdelaw.com.

According to DSP spokeswoman Master Cpl. Heather Pepper, “This case remains an active and ongoing investigation being conducted by the Delaware State Police Homicide Unit. There is no comment, reaction or response the Delaware State Police will add to (Tuesday’s news release by the family).”

DSP said earlier that Ms. Rooks armed herself with a firearm and threatened to shoot medical personnel and troopers who engaged her at the scene.

The trooper who discharged his department-issued handgun has been placed on administrative duty, as is standard policy, DSP said.

The family’s news release described Ms. Rooks as loving and being “loved by her mother, her brother, her sister-in-law, her boyfriend, and all her family and friends.”

Additionally, “Kelly was also one of the many millions of Americans who experience serious mental illness,” her family said.