Christmas Parade Terrorist Ran Over a Lady Just Days Ago, But Was Released From Jail

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The full scope of tragedy in Waukesha continued to unfold Monday morning, as authorities confirmed five people had been killed and more than 40 others injured after a driver sped through the annual holiday parade Sunday evening.

A 39-year-old Milwaukee man with an open court case related to domestic violence has been taken into custody, according to a law enforcement source with firsthand knowledge of the situation. The Associated Press also confirmed the man’s identity Monday morning.

Darrell Brooks Jr., the man suspected of being the driver, has been charged three times in less than two years with recklessly endangering the safety of others, most recently on Nov. 5 as part of a domestic abuse incident for which he was also charged with resisting or obstructing an officer.

In the most recent case, a woman told police Brooks purposefully ran her “over with his vehicle” while she was walking through a gas station parking lot after he had followed her there after a fight, according to the criminal complaint. The woman was hospitalized for her injuries, court records show.

Brooks was released from jail on Friday after posting $1,000 bond in the recent incident, according to court records. He also was charged in July 2020 with two felony counts of second-degree recklessly endangering the safety of others using a dangerous weapon. Both cases are ongoing.

An attorney representing Brooks in his Milwaukee County case declined to answer questions about the most recent charge there. The attorney, Joseph Domask, told the Journal Sentinel he is not representing him in the Waukesha incident.

Authorities have have not publicly disclosed what they believe was the man’s motivation. One law enforcement source told the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel the man had been involved in an earlier incident on Sunday, possibly also related to domestic abuse, just before the parade carnage occurred.

Waukesha police are expected to release more information at a news conference this afternoon.

Dozens of witness videos showed a red SUV hurtling through the parade and appeared to show the vehicle hitting members of the Waukesha South High School Blackshirt Band, the Milwaukee Dancing Grannies and a children’s dance group.

Early Monday morning, the Milwaukee Dancing Grannies confirmed some of their members had died.

“Those who died were extremely passionate Grannies. Their eyes gleamed … joy of being a Grannie. They were the glue … held us together,” the organization’s post on Facebook reads.

Formed in 1984, the Milwaukee Dancing Grannies are a choreographed dance and pom-pom group that performs in about 25 parades each year, according to its website. The group rehearses their routines weekly.

Also on Monday, Children’s Wisconsin released a statement saying staff had treated 18 children who were injured at the parade.

Earlier, authorities said 11 adults and 12 children were ferried to local hospitals. Others were taken by friends and family. Children’s Wisconsin hospital said it had 15 patients and no fatalities. Aurora Medical Center-Summit, a hospital in Waukesha County, confirmed they were treating 13 patients early Monday morning.

The United for Waukesha Community Fund has been created a fund to those affected by the tragedy, according to a Twitter post late Sunday from Amy Linder, CEO and president of the United Way of Greater Milwaukee & Waukesha County.

The group partnered with the Waukesha Education Foundation and the Waukesha County Community Foundation to create the fund. People can make donations through the Waukesha Community Foundation at waukeshafoundation.org/parade.

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