News & Politics

Waukesha Parade Tragedy: What We Know So Far, Suspect and Victims Confirmed

AP Photo/Jeffrey Phelps

Waukesha authorities held a press conference Monday, and here’s what we know so far about the horrific events at the City of Waukesha’s Holiday Parade.

Waukesha Chief of Police Daniel Thompson confirmed the five people killed Sunday were:  Virginia Sorenson, 79-year-old female; LeAnna Owen, 71-year-old female; Tamara Durand, 52-year-old female; Jane Kulich, 52-year-old female; and Wilhelm Hospel, 81-year-old male.

The suspect in the incident was confirmed as 39-year-old career criminal Darrell E. Brooks, as previously and correctly reported by several online investigative journalists last night. Waukesha P.D. believes Brooks was acting alone.

Thompson also confirmed there was “no pursuit that lead up to this” incident and “there’s no evidence that this was a terrorist incident.” “There was some type of disturbance” at another location “just prior to the incident,” Thompson said. No information has been found at this point to indicate “Brooks knew anyone in the parade” and there was “a knife involved” in the prior disturbance. Thompson indicated “police were not actively chasing him” as Brooks “drove right through the patrol car barricades and the officers” trying to stop him when he entered the parade route. The suspect “had no injuries when officers apprehended him.”

At this point in the investigation, suspect Darrell E. Brooks will be charged with five counts of intentional first-degree homicide. Waukesha PD is continuing their investigation into the prior disturbance since officers weren’t able to respond to the call because they immediately focused on the parade incident.

Fire Chief Steven Howard reported 48 injured people have been treated at six Waukesha area hospitals so far.

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Waukesha Mayor Shawn Reilly was at the parade and “witnessed [the] horrific actions” of the suspect. “After six decades of Norman Rockwell Christmas parades,” Reilly said, “last night it became a nightmare.” A prayer vigil will be held at a local park at 5 p.m. Monday, and a Waukesha Community Fund has been set up to help victims and their families recover from this “senseless act,” said Reilly.

Waukesha area schools remain closed this week and will resume classes after Thanksgiving Break, while authorities focus on “the victims, the families, and due process.”

While the criminal investigation into the incident is ongoing, authorities didn’t or couldn’t answer several questions on everyone’s minds:  Why did this happen? What was Brooks’ motivation? Why did the DA let Brooks out on bail so he was able to kill and injure so many innocent people?

PJ Media will continue to update this story as new information becomes available.