Darrell Brooks, 39, is accused of running his red SUV over musicians, dancers, and minors participating in the annual event in Waukesha, Wisconsin. The motive is unknown.
A child injured when a car hit a Wisconsin Christmas parade has died, bringing the death toll from this event that shocks the United States to six. The prosecutor reported Tuesday during the suspect's appearance in court.
Darrell Brooks, 39, was charged with five counts of voluntary manslaughter and now faces a sixth, said prosecutor Susan Opper.
Among the deceased, there are members of the "Abuelitas Bailadoras" club and a bank employee. Police subsequently identified four women between the ages of 52 and 79 and an 81-year-old man among the dead.
He is accused of having run over on Sunday with her red SUV musicians, dancers, and children participating in the annual parade of Waukesha.
Brooks appeared before a city court judge who officially informed him of the five charges against him, each of which carries a life sentence. " Unfortunately, I would like to inform the court that we have learned of the death of another child in this case," Opper said, noting that a sixth count would be announced soon.
The defendant remained crestfallen for most of the court hearing and at times appeared to sob. "There are no words to describe the risks that this defendant represents for the community, not only the risk of flight but the danger of his violent past," said Opper, who requested a bond of 5 million dollars.
The motive is unknown, but the authorities rule out that it is a terrorist. Darrell Brooks Jr has a criminal record. According to the prosecution, he has been involved in a dozen cases since 2000 in three US states.
In 2020, he was charged with endangering other people after shooting his nephew during an argument. Days before the tragedy, he was released on bail after being prosecuted for domestic violence.
Brooks's car slammed into a crowd participating in a Christmas parade in Wisconsin. The event has killed at least six people and injured more than 40, several of them minors, according to police authorities.
The event occurred in the afternoon in the town of Waukesha when a car jumped through the police control and rushed towards the people who participated in this parade. An agent fired at the vehicle, unloading his weapon, trying to stop him in vain.
No one was injured in the blast, he said.
Nicole Schneiter, who was at the scene with her children and grandchildren, said they looked like dolls thrown into the air. It took us a second to figure out if it was really what we saw, and then we looked down the street, and people were lying around. "
"Today, our community faced the fear and tragedy that should have been celebrated," said Mayor Shawn Riley. Instead, he appreciated the quick response of the emergency services and the help they have offered: state and federal authorities.
Waukesha Police Chief Dan Thompson said at the time that the "suspicious vehicle" was recovered after the ramming and that investigators had one person detained.
Thompson added that there is no evidence that Sunday's incident was a terrorist attack or that the suspect, identified as Darrell Brooks Jr., knew anyone at the parade. Instead, Brooks acted alone, according to Thompson.