While the flowers have withered and the words of loss have faded, the feelings behind a memorial for a 54-year-old woman shot and killed by a Culpeper police officer remain strong in Culpeper.
Michelle Hoffman lives steps away from where 54-year-old Patricia Cook lost her life on Feb. 9. She wants to know why a Culpeper police officer shot Cook at pointblank range while she sat in her Jeep Wrangler. And she's not alone.
“I believe if he wasn't in danger he wouldn't have done it,” Hoffman says.
Cook's husband Gary, who spoke to ABC7 after his wife was killed by a still un-named officer, may be considering filing a lawsuit against the town of Culpeper and the police department.
“Hopefully they'll find out what the hell happened,” Cook says.
One neighbor of the Cook's, who preferred not be identified, says it makes no sense that the petite, soft-spoken lady, who taught children's church, would get into an argument then an altercation with a police officer. She understands why Gary Cook might be considering a lawsuit.
“He's stressed and worried and hurt,” the neighbor says.
Culpeper police can't comment. Virginia state police continue its investigation into what happened. Its report will be turned over to a special prosecutor who will determine if the shooting was justified.
“I'm sure the investigation will show what the true facts are and everybody will be able to put this behind us,” says Culpeper resident Tomasina Ream.