Police have confirmed that “five people are deceased” after an SUV drove through a Christmas parade in Waukesha, Wisconsin, on Sunday, adding “these numbers may change as we collect additional information”.
Authorities also said a person of interest is in custody and the SUV has been recovered.
Waukesha Police Chief Daniel Thompson confirmed in a press conference that the incident occurred at 4:39 p.m. local time during the Waukesha Christmas Parade.
The toll of dead and injured could increase as more information is gathered, the Waukesha Police Department said.
The red SUV broke through barricades about 4:40 p.m. local time, roughly 40 minutes after the parade began, and the vehicle struck dozens of individuals, some of whom were children.
No motive was initially confirmed and many details were not shared by authorities, leading to rampant speculation about what caused the attack, which turned out to be rather simple.
The incident occurred about 55 miles north of the courthouse where jurors returned a verdict of not guilty on all counts, including two counts of homicide, for the remorseless killer Kyle Rittenhouse, who was charged in the August 2020 shootings in Kenosha, Wisconsin, during a Black Lives Matter protest.
Darrell Brooks, 39, was reportedly at the scene of a knife fight and when police arrived at that scene, he sped away in the red SUV and drove into the parade route.
Brooks has a number of prior criminal arrests, but investigators found nothing suggesting his intention was related to terrorism or ideology.
Court records show that Brooks had a lengthy criminal record, including a case filed earlier this month alleging battery, domestic abuse and recklessly endangering safety.
According to those records, he pleaded not guilty and posted cash bond. He was ordered not to possess any dangerous weapons, including firearms. Failing to comply with his bail conditions could have resulted in another charge being added or a warrant being issued.