A Wisconsin judge on Wednesday sentenced Darrell E. Brooks Jr. to six consecutive life sentences without chance of parole for his attack on a Christmas parade in November 2021 that killed six people and injured at least 48 others.
Brooks slammed an SUV into the crowd attending the annual Christmas parade in Waukesha, Wis., a close-knit community 20 miles west of Milwaukee.
The 40-year-old received a life sentence for each person he killed: Jackson Sparks, 8; Tamara Durand, 52; Jane Kulich, 52; LeAnna Owen, 71; Virginia Sorenson, 79; and Wilhelm Hospel, 81.
Applause broke out after Judge Jennifer Dorow read the sentence aloud.
"To order anything other than what I have done, sir, would be to unduly depreciate the seriousness of these offenses," she said.
Brooks faced 76 charges: the six counts of homicide charges, 61 reckless endangerment charges, six counts of hit-and-run causing death, two counts of bail jumping and one count of misdemeanor battery, according to court records.
Each reckless endangerment carries a maximum sentence of 17 1/2 years in prison.
Dorow noted that the number of years is symbolic considering his life sentences but that it was needed "because, frankly, you deserve it."
Wisconsin does not have the death penalty.
Brooks represented himself, leading to clashes between him and Dorow over his disruptive behavior throughout the three-week trial. He took off his shirt, shouted at the judge, at times refused to answer to his own name and accused prosecutors along with Dorow of being "slick" with evidence and rules of procedure.
Waukesha District Attorney Sue Opper has previously said she expects Brooks to appeal. Legal experts have also said the antics from Brooks and his apparent efforts to provoke the judge will not help him.
Brooks has 20 days to appeal the decision, Dorow said.