Last Updated on October 26, 2022
Darrell Brooks has been convicted of murdering six people after he plowed his SUV into a Christmas parade in Waukesha, Wisconsin late last year. Brooks — who represented himself in the case — was found guilty on six counts of intentional homicide stemming from the rampage that left an additional 60 people injured. He now faces life behind bars, with each homicide count carrying a mandatory life sentence.
The trial was marked by a number of bizarre outbursts from an often irate Brooks. At one point, the Waukesha killer stripped off his shirt and claimed that he didn’t recognize his own name.
Darrell Brooks was repeatedly removed from the courtroom for similar disruptions. A break was also called after Brooks — who defended himself over the course of the three-week trial — menacingly stared down the judge.
It ultimately took the jury a little over three hours to find Brooks guilty on all six murder counts.
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The now-convicted Waukesha killer claimed in his closing argument that the rampage wasn’t intentional and blamed a mechanical malfunction. Prosecutors noted that Brooks did not stop the vehicle even when police officers commanded them to, however.
“Just stop driving. That’s it. It’s really that simple. Not one person had to be hurt that day if he would have just stopped driving,” Waukesha District Attorney Susan Opper said during closing arguments.
“He plowed through 68 different people – 68. How can you hit one and keep going/ How can you hit two and keep going? How can you hit two and keep going? How can you hit three and keep going? It didn’t faze him a bit. He kept going until he got to the end and there were no more bodies to hit.”
Darrell Brooks allegedly had a fight with his girlfriend just prior to the rampage on November 21, 2021. He went on to plow his Ford Escape through a Christmas parade, killing eight and injuring 68 others. A number of children were included among the dead and injured.
Brooks was previously arrested just five days before the parade for punching the mother of his child and running her over with a car at a gas station. Despite the violent nature of the crime, he was released on bail not long after. The Milwaukee County prosecutor later admitted the bail in that case was “inappropriately low.”
Darrell Brooks was ultimately charged with 76 offenses and faces life in prison over the murder convictions.