In the US state of Wisconsin, a man has been sentenced to life in prison for driving into a Christmas parade almost a year ago. Six people were killed, and more than 60 were injured. Many of the victims were children who took part in the procession.
The man drove into the procession after an argument with his ex-girlfriend. In addition to life without the chance of parole, the judge symbolically added more than 1,000 years in prison.
After an argument with his ex-girlfriend, Darrell Brooks, 40, drove his SUV into the traditional Christmas parade on November 21 last year that passed through the streets of Waukesha, not far from Milwaukee. Unfortunately, he caused a real tragedy: 6 people, including an 8-year-old boy, died, and more than 60 others were injured.
Last month, a jury found Brooks guilty of all 76 charges, including murder. Judge Jennifer Dorow sentenced Brooks to life without parole for each of the 6 fatalities on Wednesday. According to Dorow, Brooks is an example of “bad people doing evil” and had chosen “the way of evil”. Therefore, she added a symbolic sentence of 1,067 years. The audience responded with applause to the punishment.
Before that, the mother and grandmother had pleaded for leniency because Brooks had already had bipolar disorder and psychological problems in his youth. That would have been why he entered the parade. Brooks first pleaded not guilty based on those psychological problems but later retracted that. He could not explain his actions and only said that it had not been his plan.
In any case, Judge Dorow didn’t want to go into Brook’s past to show any leniency. His psychological problems could not excuse what he had done, said the judge, who said that Brooks had not shown any remorse and empathy. “This community can only be safe if you spend the rest of your life behind bars.” Brooks heard the verdict via video link because the judge had him evicted for his continued interruptions to the hearing.