Missing: TONITA MICHELLE BROOKS
Tonita Michelle Brooks last contacted a family member on August 26, 2019, to let them know she was doing well. On September 23, 2019, she was seen in a county building in downtown Durham, North Carolina. A family member filed a missing person report on October 25, 2019, after they had not heard from her in two months, and she usually would check in every week. Brooks could usually be found on Holloway Street or Liberty Street in Durham, North Carolina. The Durham Police Department is asking for assistance locating Brooks or obtaining details regarding her disappearance.
onita lived a transient lifestyle staying at the homeless shelter in Durham and various homes but she kept in touch with her family and children on a regular basis and they often saw her walking on Holloway Street. Tonita’s family describes her as a free spirit and a sweetheart commenting “she’ll meet you and you’ll think you knew her forever.” Tonita’s family reported her missing on October 25 after noting they had not seen or heard from her in weeks which was uncharacteristic of her.
Tonita’s brothers began searching for her in the surrounding area of Holloway Street where she frequently walked in the area between north Alston Avenue and Raynor Street but no one recalled seeing her.
Tonita’s brother, Michael Brooks, described his sister as having the “mind frame of a preteen” with a childlike, trusting disposition commenting that “she would recognize danger, but she wouldn’t know how close she actually is to being hurt.” Tonita’s three children lived with Michael at the time of her disappearance and his sister’s disappearance worries him to the point of not sleeping well. Tonita’s other sibling, Lewis Brooks, thinks his sister has been harmed because “I know if she was around and knew we were looking for her, she wouldn’t put us through that.”
Brooks has distinct crippling of her left hand, a left leg limp, and a scar on the front of her stomach.
One of her twin daughters, Mary Brooks cried while talking about her mother.
“I love her you know; I just want to see where she’s at,” Mary said.
No matter where Tonita was, she called her grandmother daily. But she had not in a while and when her grandmother passed away and even Tonita’s son died unexpectedly, she did not attend the funeral.
She is so well known, even Corporal Green of the Durham Police Department recognizes her.
“I would actually see her myself going to and from work,” Cpl. Green said. “I travel using Liberty Street, and also Holloway Street, so I would see her a few times a week.”
That makes the family incredibly nervous.
“My grandmother said she talked to Tonita all the time. Before she passed, that’s all she worried about… where is Tonita? Because she missed those phone calls,” brother Lewis Brooks said.
If she was not at Long Meadow Park visiting with friends, she would have been in the downtown area.
In fact, that is the last place she was seen in Sept. of 2019.
After two months of hoping she’d come home, her family filed a police report.
Angela Taylor asked Cpl. Green, “Have they heard anything?”
“Nobody has a clue other than terrible rumors that are being spread,” Cpl. Green said.
We heard those same rumors at the park when we showed up to interview Cpl. Green.
People in the park said they heard that Brooks was found dead.
Cpl Green said there is no truth to them.
“She is still a missing person. There is no evidence to say otherwise,” Cpl. Green said.
Brooks is a small woman, described as just 5 feet, 3 inches, and 110 pounds. She has black hair and brown eyes.