Waukesha attack: Darrell Brooks Jr identified as suspect after five killed at Christmas parade

The suspect who allegedly plowed into a Christmas parade in Waukesha was released on bail just a few days before the deadly attack.

Darrell Edward Brooks, 39, was taken into custody on Sunday night after a red Ford Escape SUV drove into a the parade in the Wisconsin city, killing five and injuring more than 40 people.

The police have only said they have a “person of interest” in custody.

Sources told NBC News the driver may have been fleeing a knife fight at a nearby park just before the car barrelled into the parade on Waukesha’s Main St at 4.39pm local time.

According to Milwaukee County court records, Brooks has a lengthy criminal record dating back to 1999.

Milwaukee County District Attorney John Chisholm on Monday released a summary of the pending charges against Brooks.

Darrell Brooks Jr, 39, was taken into custody on Sunday night

(Department of Justice)

They show he was charged with two counts of “second degree recklessly endangering safety” and “felon in possesion of a firearm” in July 2020, and bail was set at $10,000 before being reduced to $7,500.

He remained in custody until 9 February 2021 until he was released on $500 bail after the trial was delayed.

On 5 November, he was charged again with recklessly endangering safety, felony bail jumping, battery, obstructing an officer and disorderly conduct.

He pleaded not guilty to all counts and was released on 11 November – 10 days before the deadly Christmas parade attack – after posting the $1,000 bond.

Mr Chisholm said in a statement the state’s bail recommendation was “inappropriately low in light of the nature of the recent charges and pending charges against Mr Brooks”.

He said the bail recommendations were “not consistent” with his office’s approach on defendant’s facing violent crime charges and he would be undertaking an internal review of the decision.

On a since-deleted social media profile, Brooks described himself as an underground hip-hop recording artist and performed under the name MathBoi Fly.

In one of his videos posted to YouTube, an SUV similar to the one used in the Christmas parade tragedy can be seen behind him.

Brooks had been posting on social media about the trial of Kyle Rittenhouse, which concluded in Kenosha on Friday about 50 miles south of Waukesha.

A preliminary investigation has indicated the attack was not linked to terrorism or Friday’s verdict in the Rittenhouse trial in Kenosha, sources told NBC News.

Police squads were seen outside Brooks’ home in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, on Sunday night and his name was reportedly heard over police scanners.


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