Wisconsin: Driver who ploughed into crowd to be charged with homicide

Wisconsin officials seek to charge a driver who ploughed into a Christmas parade on Sunday with five counts of intentional homicide.

Darrell Edward Brooks Jr, 39, killed five people, aged between 52 and 81, and injured 48 others, including young children, in Waukesha.

Police say he was fleeing a domestic dispute when he mowed into the crowd.

“A lone subject intentionally drove his maroon SUV through barricades and into a crowd of people that was celebrating the Waukesha Christmas parade,” city police chief Dan Thompson told reporters at a news conference on Monday.

He added that an officer had fired shots at the vehicle, but had to stop due to the number of people on the street.

Police said they were responding to a domestic incident involving Mr Brooks when he fled the scene and mowed through the parade crowd.

Earlier media reports suggested he was escaping a knife fight, but police have not confirmed those details.

The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel newspaper reported Mr Brooks is currently facing at least five other criminal charges including for domestic abuse and battery and had been released from jail on bond just two days earlier.

In a statement on Monday, Milwaukee County District Attorney John Chisholm, a Democrat, said the bail recommendation in Mr Brooks’ open court case was “inappropriately low in light of the nature of recent charges and the pending charges” against him.

Mr Brooks is from the city of Milwaukee, about 24km east of Waukesha.