No bond for suspect in fatal shooting

Published 11:48 am Wednesday, December 15, 2021

Franklin Police arrested on Dec. 9 a suspect in the Nov. 17 shooting in Franklin that left one dead and another injured. In a Dec. 13 bond hearing, the suspect’s attorney argued it was a case of self-defense in a home invasion gone wrong, but bond was not issued. 

Kevin Megal Rooks

In a Dec. 9 press release, the Franklin Police Department reported that some of its detectives, assisted by the Isle of Wight County Sheriff’s Office and agents of the Meherrin Drug Task Force, arrested Kevin Megal Rooks, a 26-year-old Franklin resident, in connection with the shootings.

Rooks is being charged with second-degree murder, malicious wounding and use of a firearm in the commission of a felony.

Rooks was taken into custody and is being held without bail at Western Tidewater Regional Jail.

Franklin Police reported in a Nov. 18 press release that on Nov. 17 at 7:07 p.m., the Franklin Emergency Communications Center received a call in the 300 block of Forest Pine Road in reference to shots fired. Officers from the FPD arrived on scene and found an adult male victim suffering from a gunshot wound. Those officers began to provide first aid until Franklin Fire and Rescue could arrive on scene. That victim was flown to Sentara Norfolk General Hospital. 

Officers entered a residence identified as the location of the incident and discovered a second victim, deceased from a gunshot wound, the release continued. That victim was identified as 18-year-old Tazman Banks. 

At a bond hearing in Franklin City General District Court on Dec. 13, Rooks’ attorney, Stephen B. Plott, argued that Rooks was confronting individuals who had broken into his home in what became a home invasion gone wrong.

The prosecutor, Assistant Commonwealth’s Attorney Caitlin N. Angel, argued that Rooks was not home when the break-in initially occurred but rather was alerted to the intrusion and then came to his home and shot two people. Angel argued that the intruders did not pose a threat to Rooks that warranted the manner in which he used the gun.

Plott said there is no witness that will testify to what Angel was saying.

In her comments before announcing her decision on bond, General District Judge Helivi L. Holland noted that it is rare for people to receive bond when they have received the charges that are against Rooks.

Holland ultimately issued no bond but mentioned Rooks’ right to appeal and stated that it does not offend the court for another judge to hear the case.

Rooks’ preliminary hearing was set for March 14 at 9 a.m. in Franklin City General District Court.

The Dec. 9 FPD release concluded by stating that anyone who has information about the Nov. 17 incident is asked to call Franklin Police at 757-562-8575, Franklin Crime Solvers at 757-516-7100 or contact Franklin Police online at p3tips.com. Information that leads to an arrest can earn the caller a cash reward while remaining anonymous.