Prosecutors in Wisconsin on Tuesday charged a man with intentional manslaughter, which killed five people, when one The SUV was taken to the Christmas parade In which 62 people including many children were injured.
Prosecutors said a sixth person, a child, has died and more charges are pending.
Darrell Brooks Jr. was charged with five counts of intentional manslaughter in Sunday’s accident in Waukesha, a suburb of Milwaukee. A conviction on first-degree intentional manslaughter carries a mandatory life sentence, Wisconsin’s harshest punishment.
According to the GoFundMe page, 8-year-old Jackson Sparks died on Tuesday. He was walking in the parade with his brother, who is still hospitalised. The other five people killed were adults.
“This afternoon, our dear Jackson tragically succumbed to his injuries and has passed away,” wrote Page’s organizer Alyssa Albro.
Brooks made his initial appearance in court on Tuesday. He could be heard crying during the proceedings, with his head almost on his lap, his lawyer resting his hand on his back.
Livestream video and bystander video of the city captured the chaotic scene when an SUV rammed onto the parade route and then into the crowd. Many of the injured are in critical condition.
According to the criminal complaint, eyewitnesses told police that the vehicle was “deliberately moving side to side,” making no attempt to slow down or stop as it hit several people and sent bodies and objects flying.
According to the criminal complaint, Brooks ignored several attempts to stop him.
A detective — wearing a police insignia and a neon orange safety vest — stepped in front of Brooks’ vehicle and pushed onto the hood while shouting “Stop,” several times, but Brooks overtook him, according to the complaint.
A uniformed police officer, who saw Brooks’ SUV driving down the parade route, also tried to get his attention, shouting “Stop, stop the vehicle” several times, but was ignored, according to the complaint. The complaint states that Brooks braked at one point, but instead of turning away from the parade route, he turned to the crowd and appeared to accelerate.
Another police officer hit the vehicle thrice as it entered the parade route.
Brooks was freed earlier in November on $1,000 bail in Milwaukee County for a case that accused him of intentionally hitting a woman with his car. Prosecutors said they are examining his bail recommendation in that case, calling it unreasonably low.
Cash bail has been set at $5 million on the latest charges, and a preliminary hearing is set for Jan. 14 at 9:15 a.m.
Waukesha Police Chief Dan Thompson said Brooks, 39, was leaving the scene of a domestic dispute that happened minutes earlier when he walked down the parade route.
“We have a gentleman who has a great background through several states,” said Waukesha Court Commissioner Kevin Costello.
Brooks has been charged with crimes more than a dozen times since 1999 and had two outstanding cases against him at the time of the parade disaster. These include resisting or obstructing an officer for the November 2 incident, reckless endangerment, disorderly conduct, jumping on bail and battery.
Some Republicans were quick to jump on the case as an example of the broken legal system.
Republican Rebecca Klefisk, the former lieutenant governor of Wisconsin who is running for governor in 2022, called the killings “yet another avoidable tragedy, because a violent career allowed the criminal to walk free and terrorize our community.” Went.”
And Republican state Representative Cindy Duchow said she was reintroducing a constitutional amendment that would change the bail process in Wisconsin to allow judges to consider a defendant’s threat to the community when granting bail. Judges are currently only allowed to consider the possibility that defendants may not appear in court when granting bail.
“He tried to drive his girlfriend into his car – it’s an attempted murder,” Ducho said. “If you are a threat to society, you have to work hard to get out.”
The police chief, Thompson, said there was no evidence Sunday’s bloodshed was a terrorist attack or that Brooks knew anyone at the parade. Brooks acted alone, the chief said.
NBC News published doorbell camera footage that appeared to capture Brooks’ arrest. It showed Brooks shivering in only a T-shirt, knocking on a homeowner’s door and asking for help calling along for the ride.
Moments later, police surrounded the house and shouted, “Hands up!” Brooks, standing on the porch, held out his hands and said, “Whoa, whoa!”
Hundreds of people gathered at a downtown park in Waukesha, Wisconsin on Monday night to light a candle in honor of those lost and hurt. A pair of clergy read out the names of those who died solemnly. Volunteers distributed sandwiches, hot chocolate and candles in a vigil, which was attended by inter-religious leaders and elected officials.
“We’re parents. We’re neighbors. We’re hurt. We’re angry. We’re sad. We’re confused. We’re grateful. We’re all in this together. We’re Waukesha Strong,” Waukesha School District Said Amanda Medina Roddy crying with.
Mayor Sean Reilly described the parade as a “Norman Rockwell-type” event that “became a nightmare.”