A man has appeared in court charged with multiple homicides after a car plowed into a Christmas parade in the US – as an eight-year-old boy became the sixth person to die.
Darrell Brooks, 39, cried and rocked back and forth with his face in his hands as charges were laid against him. He also appeared to be wearing an anti-stab vest.
Jackson Sparks, 8, became the latest victim and died in hospital, according to a GoFundMe page set up in his memory. He had been walking the parade route alongside his brother Tucker, 12, who is still in hospital.
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Four women and one man also died when the SUV sped down the parade route in Waukesha, Wisconsin on Sunday.
More than 60 people were injured, including many children, and some are still in a critical condition.
Witnesses said Brooks appeared to be intentionally moving side to side to hit people and made no attempt to slow down, according to the criminal complaint.
Video: Waukesha parade crash suspect appears in courtroom
- Waukesha parade crash
A police officer shot at the car and hit it three times, the complaint added, while a detective also stepped in front and pounded on the bonnet – but Brooks drove past him.
The adults who died were Virginia Sorenson, 79, LeAnna Owen, 71, Tamara Durand, 52, Jane Kulich, 52, and Wilhelm Hospel, 81.
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Brooks was charged with five counts of first-degree intentional homicide at the court in Waukesha.
His bail has been set at $5 million.
Prosecutors said more charges were pending after revealing that a child had become the sixth fatality.
Police Chief Dan Thompson said on Monday that Brooks had left the scene of a domestic dispute minutes before he drove into the parade.
He said the incident was not being treated as terrorism.
Brooks, from Milwaukee, has been freed on a $1,000 bail earlier in November in a case in which he’s accused of deliberately hitting a woman with a car.
Prosecutors are looking into the circumstances after calling the bail amount “inappropriately low”.
Hundreds gathered in downtown Waukesha on Monday night for a candlelit vigil on Monday night, where a pair of clergy read out the names of those who had died.
“We are parents. We are neighbors. We are hurting. We are angry. We are sad. We are confused. We are thankful. We are all in this together. We are Waukesha Strong,” said a tearful Amanda Medina Roddy with the Waukesha school district.
Mayor Shawn Reilly described the parade as a “Norman Rockwell-type” event that “became a nightmare.”