“We are confident he acted alone,” Waukesha Police Chief Dan Thompson said at a news conference. “There is no evidence this is a terrorist incident.”
Brooks faces five charges of intentional homicide and more charges are possible, Thompson said.
The chief said no motive is known. Brooks was involved in a domestic disturbance earlier Sunday and left that scene just prior to driving his SUV through the parade, Thompson said.
Police officers tried to engage Brooks as he approached the parade in his SUV but Brooks drove through barricades.
“When the suspect was driving through and into the crowd, one officer did discharge his firearm and fire shots at the suspect to stop the threat but due to the amount of people, had to stop, stop and fire — not fire any other additional shots,” Thompson said.
Brooks was not injured in the incident.
The five deceased victims range in age from 52 to 81 and include four women and one man, Thompson said.
Brooks was out on bond before the crash, DA says
Brooks 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.”
Brooks posted the bail on November 11 in relation to charges including domestic abuse. The charges stemmed from a November 2 incident in which Brooks is accused of running over a woman with his car while she was walking through a gas station parking lot, according to a criminal complaint.
“Officers observed tire tracks on her left pants leg,” the criminal complaint read.
Prosecutors filed five charges related to the incident including: 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 DA’s office now says 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’s statement 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 and earlier November 2021 incident about the DA statement, but has not yet received a response.
With the 2020 incident, Brooks is accused of firing a handgun during an argument, according to a charging complaint. While arresting Brooks, authorities say they found a stolen handgun and three “multi colored pills,” which later tested “presumptively positive” for methamphetamines.
Brooks was charged with two counts of second-degree reckless endangering safety while using a dangerous weapon and one count of possession of a firearm by a felon.
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 February 21, according to the district attorney’s office.
Brooks also has an outstanding arrest warrant in Nevada in an unrelated case for which he was arrested and allegedly jumped bail. CNN has reached out to a previous attorney for Brooks with no response.
Authorities in Nevada issued an active warrant on August 15, 2016, for jumping bail, according to Sara Johns, Washoe County Sheriff’s Department spokesperson. Johns said detectives later determined Brooks was in Wisconsin; “however, detectives did not have viable intelligence on Brooks’ exact location.”