Suspect has been reported as found.


AMELIA COUNTY, Va. — A family was zip-tied, duct-taped and held hostage at gun point for hours inside their Amelia County home, until a text message sent from a granddaughter’s phone lured 68-year-old Olene H. Brooks to the home.

Police said 43-year-old Dana William was then able to take Brooks from the home along the 17000 block of Poorhouse Road Thursday night. He is considered armed and dangerous — and on the run with Brooks.

Dana William and Olene Brooks (PHOTO: Amelia Sheriff’s Office)

Dana William and Olene Brooks (PHOTO: Amelia Sheriff’s Office)

“I’m sorry I didn’t do enough to make you free,” Shawntae Smith, Brooks’ granddaughter, said Monday. Smith said she felt guilty over her grandmother’s abduction. Amelia Deputies believe William is holding Olene Brooks against her will.

“Please, please keep fighting like you did for me,” Smith, 21, said.

The family drama started with Smith, her mother, her son and another man held at gun, after they say William — Brooks’ former son-in-law – broke a window out, climbed in, and waited for them to come home.

Shawntae Smith

Shawntae Smith

“He told me in order for me to save my family, I would have to call my mom to the house,” Smith’s mother, Sheila Smith said. She refused and things intensified.

“He tied Shawntae with zip ties and tied my friend up with zip ties, then tied me and my son up,” she said.

Smith said William then swiped her cell phone and sent a text to Brooks asking her to bring over a thermometer because the four-year-old was sick, a lie that lured the 68-year-old grandmother to the Poorhouse Road home. Monday was Olene Brooks’ birthday.

Deputies said William snatched Brooks and went back to her home where they later found her husband Woodell Brooks dead.  Law enforcement sources tell CBS 6 he was murdered.

“Pop was a family guy, he loved all of us,” Smith said.  “He was a paramedic for years and would always help people.”

Olene H. Brooks and Woodell Brooks

Olene H. Brooks and Woodell Brooks

Now his family is asking for a favor from the EMS community and everyone else watching, egging the public to be on the look-out for William and a 2010 silver Dodge Caravan with a Virginia handicap license plate 433114.

Suspect vehicle - a 2010 silver Dodge Caravan

Suspect vehicle – a 2010 silver Dodge Caravan

Vehicle with handicap VA license plate

Vehicle with handicap VA license plate

“Please be on alert for that van and if you see him, call police,” said Smith.

Brooks was described as:

  • 5’4″
  • 160 pound
  • white woman
  • with brown hair and green eyes

The U-S Marshal Fugitive Task Force is working this case around the clock.

Anyone with information was asked to call the Amelia County Sheriff’s Office at 804-561-2118 or 911.

If you see William, remember, police consider him armed and dangerous.