Police, Witness: Suspect Aimed at People in Parade Route

Police, Witness: Suspect Aimed at People in Parade Route police mugshot of the suspect (Waukesha County Sheriff Office/Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel via AP)

By Jack Gournell | Tuesday, 23 November 2021 05:58 PM

Darrell Brooks, the suspect in the incident Sunday at the Waukesha, Wisc., Christmas parade that left six people dead after an SUV plowed through the parade route, appeared to intentionally target people, according to the criminal complaint released Tuesday.

The complaint contains five counts of first-degree homicide because it was released before it was announced that a sixth victim, a child, had died in the hospital on Tuesday.

The prosecutor is requesting $5 million bail and said a sixth charge will be added. Each charge carries a life sentence.

According to the complaint, a foot patrol officer responded to a call of two people fighting near the parade route. Moments later, a police detective working att the parade, saw Brooks in a red Ford Escort moving toward him with people jumping out of the way.

The vehicle was moving slowly and the detective, who was clearly dressed as a police officer, told the driver to stop multiple times. The driver hit him at a slow rate of speed, forcing him onto the hood and onto the driver's side of the vehicle where the detective continued to yell stop, but instead, the suspect continued onto the parade route.

From there he was chased on foot by another officer, who estimated his speed at 25 mph as he began hitting people walking in the route and spectators.

If the driver had been lost, he would have had multiple opportunites to turn off the parade route, but took none of them, the officer said.

Three of the initial four victims were pronounced dead at the scene and a fourth died at the hospital. The fifth victim also was pronounced dead after being transported to a hospital. The victims died of multiple blunt force trauma.

Brooks appeared to be emotionless, according to the officer, and weaved back and forth in an apparent attempt to hit as many people as possible, appearing only to be avoiding vehicles in the route. A witnesses interviewed by police also said he believed the suspect had "a direct intent to hit as many parade participants" as possible.

At one point he slowed to a stop, but then squealed his tires and took off again. He had multiple opportunities to turn off the parade route, but refused to take them, according to the report.