Elderly couple killed in Delaware cemetery shooting identified

A second victim has succumbed to his injuries just days after a shooting took place in a cemetery in New Castle County. 

The shooting happened at the Delaware Veterans Memorial Cemetery located on Chesapeake City Road around 10:15 a.m. Friday.

Delaware State Police say 85-year old Lidia Marino was pronounced deceased on scene. Her husband 86-year-old Paul C. Marino was taken to the hospital in critical condition, where he died on Saturday. The couple was from Elkton, Maryland. 


Delaware State Police have identified the suspect as Sheldon C. Francis, 29, of Middletown, but have not said if the suspect and the victims were connected. 

Sheldon C Francis

From: Delaware State Police

Francis was later found dead in a wooded area near the scene of the shooting. It is undetermined at this time if the gunshot wound was self-inflicted or as a result of the earlier exchange of gunfire.

“Today, a moment of tragedy shattered the peaceful atmosphere of the Delaware Veterans Memorial Cemetery. We are deeply sorry for the families and loved ones of the victims,” said Secretary of State Jeff Bullock during a press conference Friday. “We are thankful for the quick thinking and actions of our cemetery staff and the Delaware State Police, and grateful that no one else was hurt in this dangerous situation.”

The investigation is active and ongoing and will be furthered by the Delaware State Police Homicide Unit. Anyone with information regarding the incident is asked to contact Det. M. Ryde by calling 302-698-8557.


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