As it happenedended1637950747

Wisconsin parade news – latest: Two Illinois cities boost security ahead of 134th Christmas procession

Follow the latest updates

Darrell Brooks appears in court following Wisconsin parade attack

At least two cities in Illinois have amended Christmas parades and enhanced security plans following the tragedy in Waukesha, Wisconsin, last weekend, with authorities informing the public to “expect to see more police barriers and city vehicles”.

The parades, which include the Santa Claus procession in Peoria on Friday, are popular events and allegedly the longest running Christmas parade in the US, having occurred 133 times before.

In Galesburg, Illinois, a second Christmas parade will similarly take place next weekend with enhanced security, and assurances from authorities of public safety.

It follows a fundraiser for 39-year-old Darrell Brooks being removed by GoFundMe after the page violated its terms by asking for donations totalling $5m (£3.7m) to free the accused from bail.

Mr Brooks, who police believe wanted to strike “as many people as possible” when he raced his car through a Christmas parade in Waukesha, Wisconsin, on Sunday, was described in the fundraiser as a “friend”.

A criminal complaint filed on Tuesday has meanwhile accused Mr Brooks of having “no emotion” when he drove down the parade route, killing six people and wounding at least 47 others.

He was said to have fled from police responding to a call about a domestic dispute between him and another person hours earlier, and prosecutors plan to charge him with six counts of first-degree intentional homicide.

He is being held on $5m bail.

More than $1.5m has been raised to support victims of the attack and their families. The six people killed are: Tamara Durand, Jane Kulich, Wilhelm Hospel, Leanna Owen, Virginia “Ginny” Sorenson, and Jackson Sparks.

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Fire chief calls attack aftermath ‘a war zone'

The Waukesha fire chief likened the aftermath of Sunday’s Christmas parade attack to a “war zone”.

At an emotional press conference on Monday, Chief Steven Howard was asked to describe the scene moments after a red SUV barrelled down the parade route, killing five people and wounding 48 others.

“It was...carnage,” he said.

Mr Howard said many of the Wisconsin community’s first responders had turned out to watch the parade with their families, but ended up helping the injured after chaos erupted.

The Independent’s Megan Sheets and Namita Singh report:

‘There were pom-poms, shoes everywhere,’ says Waukesha attack witness

Police confirm five were killed and 40 injured after a vehicle ploughed through a holiday parade

Megan Sheets22 November 2021 21:30
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PICTURED: Victim Virginia ‘Ginny’ Sorenson

One of the five victims killed in Sunday’s Christmas parade tragedy has been pictured.

Virginia “Ginny” Sorenson, 79, was described by loved ones as the “beating heart” of the Milwaukee Dancing Grannies.

Virginia ‘Ginny’ Sorenson, 79, was the ‘beating heart’ of the Milwaukee Dancing Grannies

Her husband of 56 years David Sorenson told the Journal-Sentinel his wife, who had a bad back and dodgy hip, had initially been due to ride the route in a van. But as the grannies were short of numbers for the parade, Ms Sorenson had offered to hold a banner and march with them.

The Independent’s Helen Elfer reports:

Waukesha Christmas parade: First pictures released of victims named by police

Five confirmed dead and many of the injured remain in hospital

Megan Sheets22 November 2021 21:50
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ICYMI: What happened at the Waukesha Christmas parade?

The Wisconsin city of Waukesha is in shock after a car ploughed into a Christmas parade at high speed at 4.39pm on Sunday, killing at least five people and injuring 48 more.

The red Ford Escape SUV was captured on video driving straight towards marching cheerleaders and band members at around 40mph, hitting around 20 people and causing the crowd that had assembled to enjoy the 58th Annual Waukesha Holiday Parade to disperse in panic.

The driver has since been named as Milwaukee man Darrell Edward Brooks Jr, 39, who had only been out on bail for a few days after being arrested on 5 November on charges of domestic abuse, resisting an officer, second-degree recklessly endangering safety, disorderly conduct and felony bail jumping. He has been convicted of several criminal offences since 1999.

The Independent’s Joe Sommerlad explains the tragedy:

What happened at the Waukesha Christmas parade?

Suspect in custody after SUV ploughs into holiday revellers, killing at least five and injuring 40

Megan Sheets22 November 2021 22:10
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Marjorie Taylor Greene says Democrats to blame for Waukesha killings

Marjorie Taylor Greene says that the blame for the Waukesha killings lies with the mainstream media, Democrats, and Joe Biden, bizarrely claiming they incited the murder of five people Sunday night’s parade in the town.

The Georgia representative tweeted: “After the widespread hateful reaction to the Rittenhouse verdict & dog whistle calls to radical BLM ground troops by the mainstream media, Democrats, and even the President of the United States, we must ask if they incited the mass murder in Waukesha, WI.”

Ms Greene’s tweet ended with the words: “Intentional homicide”, which is what suspect Darrell Brooks has been charged with.

The Independent’s Oliver O’Connell reports:

Marjorie Taylor Greene bizarrely claims Democrats to blame for Waukesha killings

No evidence tragedy in Waukesha linked to Rittenhouse trial

Megan Sheets22 November 2021 22:30
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Brooks skipped bail on sex offender charge after impregnating 15-year-old: Reports

Darrell Brooks was wanted in Nevada for failing to obey sex offender laws, Washoe County Sheriff’s Office confirmed to Fox News.

Brooks was convicted of having consensual sex with a 15-year-old girl and conceiving a child in 2006. He was arrested in 2016 for violating the terms of his probation but he never appeared in court, Fox News reported.

Justin Vallejo22 November 2021 22:53
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Brooks skipped bail on sex offender charge after impregnating 15-year-old: Reports

Darrell Brooks was wanted in Nevada for failing to obey sex offender laws, Washoe County Sheriff’s Office confirmed to Fox News.

Brooks was convicted of having consensual sex with a 15-year-old girl and conceiving a child in 2006. He was arrested in 2016 for violating the terms of his probation but he never appeared in court, Fox News reported.

Justin Vallejo22 November 2021 22:53
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How a ‘Norman Rockwell-type’ Christmas parade turned into ‘senseless tragedy’

Officials in Waukesha, Wisconsin, said the parade, a “Norman Rockwell-type event” that the city had proudly hosted for decades for both residents and visitors, was part of its very fabric, writes The Independent’s Andrew Buncombe.

“With the state, and the nation, already on edge over the verdict in the Kyle Rittenhouse trial, a proceeding that appears to have divided the nation, some commentators expressed a small degree of relief when police in Waukesha, 50 miles northwest of Kenosha, said they were not treating Sunday’s incident as terrorism.”

How a ‘Norman Rockwell-type’ Christmas parade turned into ‘senseless tragedy’

Five dead and at least 48 injured as police rule out act of terrorism

Justin Vallejo22 November 2021 23:50
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Candlelight vigil held for victims

Hundreds of people are gathering in Cutler Park to remember the victims of suspected attacker Darrell Brooks, who is alleged to have ploughed through a Christmas parade on Sunday.

Five were killed and more than 40 more injured.

Justin Vallejo23 November 2021 00:06
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Everything we know about suspect Darrell Brooks

The suspect who is accused of plowing into a Christmas parade in Waukesha had been released on bail just a few days before the deadly attack, on charges of driving over an ex-partner.

Darrell Edward Brooks, 39, was taken into custody on Sunday night shortly after a red Ford Escape SUV drove into a the parade in the Wisconsin city, killing five and injuring 48 people, including 18 children aged 3 to 16.

According to criminal record searches, Mr Brooks was a longtime felon whose offending dated back to 1999. He has convictions for drug and firearm possession, strangulation, battery and resisting arrest, has been sentenced to two prison terms, and spent years on probation and under court supervision.

The Independent’s Bevan Hurley has the full background.

Suspect in Wisconsin Christmas parade attack identified as Darrell Brooks

Darrell Brooks, 39, will be charged with five counts of intentional homicide, police say

Justin Vallejo23 November 2021 02:00
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What happened at the Wisconsin Christmas parade?

The Wisconsin city of Waukesha is in shock after a car ploughed into a Christmas parade at high speed at 4.39pm on Sunday, killing at least five people and injuring 40 more.

The red Ford Escape SUV was captured on video driving straight towards marching cheerleaders and band members at around 40mph, hitting around 20 people and causing the crowd that had assembled to enjoy the 58th Annual Waukesha Holiday Parade to disperse in panic.

Witnesses to the atrocity on Sunday described the car as having accelerated along the parade route and “going from side to side, targeting people”.

The Independent’s Joe Sommerlad writes what happened next.

What happened at the Waukesha Christmas parade?

Suspect in custody after SUV ploughs into holiday revellers, killing at least five and injuring 40

Justin Vallejo23 November 2021 03:00

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