SACRAMENTO (CBS13) — The man accused of killing a Natomas librarian this week, Ronald Seay, made his first court appearance Friday afternoon.
Just days after the heinous murder of Amber Clark, the suspect was officially charged with murder with a special circumstance. Attorneys say it makes him eligible for either the death penalty or life without parole.
Seay was offered a public defender and is being held at the Sacramento County Jail without bail.
The 56-year-old entered the courtroom without handcuffs, stood in a metal enclosure, and initially turned away from the judge, getting a glimpse of the victim’s family in the crowd.
The judge asked him to face forward to hear the charges against him.
“You unlawfully and with malice of forethought murdered Amber Clark,” Judge Michael Sweet said.
41-year-old Clark was a beloved librarian. She was shot and killed after her shift Tuesday evening. She was sitting in her car, in the parking lot of the North Natomas Library when Seay allegedly shot her.
Twelve hours later, Sacramento Police arrested Seay for shooting into an occupied vehicle. Police took Seay into custody after a slow-speed car chase nearby.
They say he was first known to investigators after causing a disturbance at the library on Oct. 13. Seay was then banned from reentering the branch after the library filed a no trespassing order.
In the hallway outside of the court, the librarian director Rivkah Sass spoke to reporters. She wouldn’t elaborate on the October incident, to avoid jeopardizing the investigation.
“Right now, our minds thoughts and hearts are with Amber and her husband,” said Sass. “Library staff will do anything we can to protect our own and to help one another.”
Now, they’re helping each other heal, and seek justice.
Clark’s husband emerged from court shaken and too heartbroken for words.
Across town at Sacramento Police headquarters, Spokeswoman Linda Matthew credited the community with helping arrest a suspect so quickly after the shooting.
“There’s the employees that were at the library there on scene, but also our officers out there that know the community that they work in,” Matthew said.
Seay will be back in court December 27th at 8:30am.