At least 5 killed after SUV plows into Wisconsin holiday parade

By Aditi Sangal, Meg Wagner, Melissa Mahtani, Melissa Macaya and Mike Hayes, CNN

Updated 9:15 a.m. ET, November 23, 2021
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6:13 p.m. ET, November 22, 2021

Vigil held to honor victims of Waukesha Christmas parade incident

(CNN)
(CNN)

A candlelight vigil is being held to honor the victims of Sunday's Waukesha Christmas parade incident. The vigil is being organized by the Association of Waukesha Congregations at Cutler Park.

Five people were killed and more than 40 were injured when a vehicle drove into a Christmas parade Sunday afternoon, city officials said.

Witnesses described the horror of seeing individuals struck and lying on the ground after a red SUV drove through a series of barricades and barreled into the crowded parade route on Main Street around 4:39 p.m. local time.

Police identified the suspect Monday and said he was involved in a domestic disturbance just prior to driving his SUV through the parade.

5:53 p.m. ET, November 22, 2021

Grandmother of 3 identified as a victim of the fatal Waukesha Christmas parade incident

From CNN's Carroll Alvarado 

Milwaukee native, Jane Kulich, 52, was representing her employer Citizens Bank, in the Waukesha Christmas parade when she was struck and killed by a red SUV Sunday night, according to her daughter Taylor Smith.

“She was an amazing mom and grandma. Everyone loved her,” Smith told CNN. 

Kulich is survived by her three children and three grandchildren. 

In a Facebook post Smith wrote, “My mom was killed last night. We are told she didn't suffer.” 

The family has started a GoFundMe page to help pay for Kulich’s funeral costs. 

 

9:15 a.m. ET, November 23, 2021

Court records show suspect in Waukesha parade incident was out on bail

From CNN's Paul P. Murphy and Claudia Dominguez

Mugshot of Darrell Brooks taken by the Milwaukee County Sheriff's Office on November 3, 2021.
Mugshot of Darrell Brooks taken by the Milwaukee County Sheriff's Office on November 3, 2021. (Milwaukee County Sheriff's Office)

The suspect in Sunday's fatal parade incident in Waukesha, Wisconsin, had been released on $1,000 bail earlier this month, according to court records and the Milwaukee County District Attorney's office, which said in a statement released Monday that the bail had been set "inappropriately low."

In a news conference Monday, authorities named Darrell Brooks, 39, as the suspect that drove an SUV into a parade, killing five people and injuring 48 others.

Brooks posted bail on Nov. 11 in relation to charges, including domestic abuse. That incident also involved Brooks being accused of using a car to cause an injury, according to a criminal complaint. 

On Nov. 2, according to the complaint, Brooks ran over a woman with his car while she was walking through a gas station parking lot.

“Officers observed tire tracks on her left pants leg,” the criminal complaint claims. 

Prosecutors filed five charges related to the incident: obstructing an officer; second-degree recklessly endangering safety with domestic abuse assessments; disorderly conduct with domestic abuse assessments; and misdemeanor battery with domestic abuse assessments.

Brooks was also charged with bail jumping, because he was already out on bail following a July 24, 2020, incident, according to court documents.

In a statement, the Milwaukee County District Attorney's office now said that they should not have recommended such a low bail for Brooks and have launched an internal review into the decision.

“The State’s bail recommendation in this case was inappropriately low in light of the nature of the recent charges and the pending charges against Mr. Brooks,” the office said. “The bail recommendation in this case is not consistent with the approach of the Milwaukee County District Attorney’s Office toward matters involving violent crime, nor was it consistent with the risk assessment of the defendant prior to setting of bail.”

CNN reached out to Brooks’ attorney from the 2020 incident and the November 2021 incident about the district attorney's office statement but has not yet received a response.

In the initial 2020 incident, Brooks was charged with: two counts of second-degree reckless endangering safety, use of a dangerous weapon; and one count of possession of a firearm by a felon.

The charging complaint alleges that Brooks fired a handgun during an argument. Authorities said they found a stolen handgun during Brooks' arrest and three “multi colored pills,” which later tested “presumptively positive” for methamphetamines.

Bail had initially been set at $10,000 in that case but because Brooks had asked for a speedy jury trial, which could not be met, bail was reduced to $500. Brooks was released on bail in that case on Feb. 21, according to the district attorney’s office.

Brooks' initial court appearance for the Waukesha Christmas parade incident is scheduled for Tuesday at 5 p.m. ET (4 p.m. local time).

3:45 p.m. ET, November 22, 2021

Suspect in Waukesha parade incident will have initial court appearance on Tuesday afternoon

From CNN's Paul P. Murphy

An initial appearance for Darrell Brooks, the suspect in Sunday's fatal incident at the Waukesha Christmas parade, will have his initial appearance in court on Tuesday at 5 p.m. ET (4 p.m. local time).

The hearings will be available via livestream for the public to view.

In a news conference on Monday afternoon, authorities said that police would be referring five counts of first intentional homicide, and other charges. 

2:48 p.m. ET, November 22, 2021

3 sets of siblings are among the injured

From CNN's Claudia Dominguez

Eighteen children, including three sets of siblings, were taken to Children’s Wisconsin after an SUV barreled through the Waukesha Christmas Parade on Sunday night, Amy Drendel, director of the Emergency Department and Trauma Center, said today.

The children's ages ranged from 3 to 16, Drendel said at a news conference.

“Injuries ranged from facial abrasions to broken bones to serious head injuries. Six of these patients were sent to the operating room last night and two additional patients are undergoing surgeries today,” Drendel said.  

Dr. Michael Gutzeit, chief medical officer and vice president of Children’s Wisconsin, thanked the community and first responders for their efforts in handling the incident.

“I want to emphasize and express thanks to the community for the effort in their response. That begins with the gratitude for law enforcement who responded to the incident and was able to secure the incident. I want to commend the efforts of the Emergency Medical Services responders and other local hospitals who successfully stabilized patients before transporting or transferring kids to be cared for by our pediatric specialists,” Gutzeit said.

Children’s Wisconsin has contacted each of the patient’s families, Gutzeit said.

“Last night our community was impacted by the tragic and intense incident at a holiday parade in Waukesha, Wisconsin. Our prayers and thoughts are with the victims and loved ones during this very tragic time,” Gutzeit said. “The injuries from Sunday night will go well beyond the physical and will take time to heal. We all must continue to lean on each other to encourage those impacted to reach out and use the resources that are available to them.”

Children’s Wisconsin said it has mental and behavioral support specialists available to support patients and families who need resources. 

2:41 p.m. ET, November 22, 2021

Waukesha school superintendent: "District will resume classes after the Thanksgiving holiday"

From CNN's Leinz Vales

The Waukesha School District Superintendent announced that the district will remain closed until the Monday after the Thanksgiving holiday. Schools in the district were closed on today following the parade incident, where five people were killed and dozens were injured.

“Our counseling and lunch services will be available to students and staff again tomorrow,” said Jim Sebert, the superintendent of the Waukesha School district at a news conference. “The district will resume classes after the Thanksgiving holiday per our school calendar on Monday November 29th."

Sebert went on to say that additional resources and assistance will be provided to families with in the Waukesha community.

“Further information and any additional updates will continue to be available on our district websites," said Sebert. "I am deeply sorry that we are here today and we look forward to healing both as a school community, and a larger Waukesha community.”

2:57 p.m. ET, November 22, 2021

Official describes how dozens of victims were transported and treated at a nearby hospital after crash

From CNN's Maureen Chowdhury

Alan Johnson, vice president of critical care and specialty services at ProHealth Care based in Waukesha, Wisconsin
Alan Johnson, vice president of critical care and specialty services at ProHealth Care based in Waukesha, Wisconsin (CNN)

Alan Johnson, vice president of critical care and specialty services at ProHealth Care based in Waukesha, Wisconsin, provided an update on those who were treated at a nearby hospital after an SUV plowed into a Christmas parade.

Johnson said during a news conference that 48 victims of the parade were transported to area hospital, where 29 were taken to Waukesha Memorial Hospital, which Johnson noted was just a few blocks away from the parade route.

"Victims started arriving very quickly after the incident. In fact, many of ProHealth Care staff were attending the parade, witnessed this tragedy, and provided immediate first aid to victims," Johnson said.

Johnson said that both children and adults were brought in to receive care.

"There were many children among the victims brought to Waukesha Memorial. After initial assessment, stabilization and treatment, we transferred 11 of those to Children's of Wisconsin. Four victims were admitted to Waukesha Memorial, they are all currently stable and many of them will likely discharge from the hospital today," he said.

Johnson also said that one victim that was brought to Waukesha Memorial Hospital was pronounced dead on arrival.

Twelve others who were treated in the emergency department were released.

"In addition to those who were on duty at Waukesha Memorial last night, many others rushed to the hospital to help. They included nearly every one of our emergency department physicians, countless surgeons and an anesthesiologists, hospitalists and nurses. What I saw on display last night in response to this crisis was nothing less than the highest level of professionalism," Johnson added.

3:25 p.m. ET, November 22, 2021

The ages of the dead range from 52 to 81

From CNN’s Kay Jones

The ages of the five deceased victims from Sunday’s Christmas parade incident in Waukesha, Wisconsin, ranged from 52 to 81, Police Chief Daniel Thompson said.

The victims include four women and one man, according to Thompson.

The police chief said he arrived to the scene minutes after the incident occurred. He described seeing heroism amid the chaos and tragedy. First responders and residents worked together to triage the victims and get them as stable as possible, Thompson said during Monday afternoon’s news conference. 

Officers and residents took victims to the hospital in their personal vehicles, Thompson said.

Fire Chief Steve Howard said fire department personnel transported 22 patients to six area hospitals.

CNN is working to confirm the spellings of the names of the five deceased victims.

2:32 p.m. ET, November 22, 2021

Suspect faces 5 counts of intentional homicide with more charges possible, says police chief

From CNN's Josiah Ryan

Waukesha, Wisconsin, Police Chief Dan Thompson announced officials are referring five charges of intentional homicide for Darrell E. Brooks, the suspect in Sunday’s incident at the Christmas parade, adding more charges are possible

"At this time, the Waukesha Police Department is referring five counts of first-degree intentional homicide, with additional charges based on the investigation," Thompson said speaking at a news conference this afternoon.

At least five people were killed and at least 48 more were injured when an SUV plowed into a Christmas parade Sunday in Waukesha, Wisconsin, city officials said.