The driver who plowed through a Christmas parade in downtown Waukesha, killing five people and injuring nearly 50, did so intentionally and is expected to face first-degree homicide counts and other charges, police said Monday.
The suspect, Darrell Brooks Jr., 39, recently had been released from custody in a strikingly similar case, in which he was accused of driving over a woman during a domestic dispute, sending her to the hospital and leaving tire marks on her pant leg.
The Milwaukee County District Attorney’s Office, which is prosecuting that case, said Monday it was launching an internal review of a prosecutor’s “inappropriately low” $1,000 bail recommendation. The bail amount was signed off on by a court commissioner.
Mr. Brooks has a long rap sheet, and the Milwaukee County District Attorney’s office said Monday he had been out on a $1,000 bond after he allegedly tried to hit the mother of his child with his vehicle. He was arrested the same day and charged with obstructing an officer, endangering public safety, disorderly conduct, jumping bail and battery. Why was someone with that violent history released on such a minor bond?
The D.A.’s office said it is conducting an internal review of the bail decision, which sounds like ex post self-protection. “The state’s bail recommendation in this case was inappropriately low in light of the nature of the recent charges and pending charges against Mr. Brooks,” said the D.A.’s office in a statement. The Milwaukee County D.A is John Chisholm, a Democrat who readers may recall for his office’s unjustified pursuit of donors to former Gov. Scott Walker’s campaigns.
Bail reform has been a leading cause of the progressive left in recent years, and Democratic prosecutors have often gone along. New York State has passed bail reform that has had the effect of letting many felons back on the street to commit more crimes. The influence of the progressive bail campaign on Mr. Chisholm’s office should be part of the probe.
I find it hard to believe that Mr. Chisholm will not face a recall. He’s run unopposed in the last several general elections.
Sadly, human behavior just does not comport with Mr. Chisholm’s view of bail and criminal sentencing which to all appearances values the rights of the Brookses over those of the overwhelming preponderance of the people who don’t have such histories. I find it inexplicable. Can a history like Mr. Brooks’s, with more than 20 years worth of multiple instances of violent behavior, escalating in their seriousness, be reasonably characterized as anything but feral? And even more sadly as the population increases while the extralegal controls over behavior erode, such feral behavior is not rare and will become increasingly common.
Dealing with such creatures is a major challenge for our system of criminal justice. Such people are simply too dangerous to wander freely among us.