Thoughts on the Waukesha Christmas Parade Trial

Sometime later today I expect to hear the news that Darrell Brooks has been sentenced to six consecutive life sentences, plus around 900 years in prison without the possibility of parole. I would like to watch it live but have some business matters to deal with so I will watch it later on YouTube (Law and Crime has livestreamed and archived the whole trial). This ending to an unspeakable tragedy has received a ton of press locally here in Wisconsin, and I have seen quite a bit nationally as well. What follows are my thoughts on the subject.

November 21 of last year for whatever reason, Darrell Brooks drove his SUV through the Waukesha Christmas parade and changed untold numbers of lives forever. He rolled over little kids, the elderly, and everyone in between without regard for, well, anything.

I have watched almost the entire trial due to the intense local interest. I have always been interested in law and courts and my family has a connection to this trial as we know the brother of one of the people involved quite well. I turned my mother onto watching it. She moved to Denver from this area six years ago and noted that she hadn’t heard those Wisconsin accents in some time. Yes, there is a Wisconsin accent. It isn’t quite as sing-songy as the North Dakota or Minnesota versions, but it is quite nasal.

That aside, when the trial started I was sort of taken aback by the defendant. He ditched his attorneys and before trial decided to do the whole thing himself. All through the trial his main defense was the sovereign citizen nonsense. I had heard of it before but had never really seen it in practice. My kneejerk was to “toss the bum out” but forward the trial went. In addition to the SovCit lunacy, Brooks was abusive to the judge, the DA’s who were prosecuting him, the court in general, the witnesses and anyone else that was in his way. He was removed from the courtroom repeatedly (I learned all about Illinois vs. Allen) and moved to an adjacent courtroom to view the proceedings. The trial probably was extended an extra week due to the disruptions, but they got through it. The judge was masterful with her patience and treatment of the defendant. He had his day. It is my opinion that there is no way any appeals court will touch this thing with the treatment that Brooks received, and that is a good thing.

During the trial the prosecution showed a lot of video of Brooks being questioned by the cops and admitting things. An interesting example of the Reid technique in real life. They broke him down.

The jury deliberated for around 2 hours from what I have heard before returning seventy six guilty verdicts.

That is the pretty short version of the trial – you can go to the Law and Crime channel on YouTube if you want to watch it.

After all of this I have learned a lot, but still have some questions. The State concluded that Brooks was sane enough to run his own trial but I am not really so sure. I have never seen a person like him. He obviously has narcissistic personality disorder at a level I’ve never seen. I’ve known narcissists before, but this guy has not once shown any remorse or guilt whatsoever to any of the victims that he harmed. He even had the gall to call people to the stand as his witnesses that were harmed or had their children harmed by him. I also think he is bi-polar or something as he would be in a rage one minute and the next minute smiling and laughing and apologizing. I guess it all could be an act and I am certainly no expert with this type of thing, but the guy, at least to me, didn’t seem fit to do his trial.

It is my guess that Brooks will be killed in prison like Dahmer was.

But enough of Brooks. Yesterday were the victim statements. I promised myself I wouldn’t watch them as I knew what was coming but I am glad that I did. Naturally, many of the victims made written statements as they knew they wouldn’t hold up in court to actually read them. The statements of those who came to court hit a range that I expected.

1) Rage/I hope you rot in hell/wish we had the death penalty in Wisconsin
2) Story of my injuries/families injuries/death and I hope you rot in hell
3) Forgiveness and examples of how you can’t beat us
4) Other (two examples)

I always try to imagine myself in these situations and try to figure out where I would fall. I would likely not be able to hold myself together to make a public statement but if I could, likely would be somewhere between 2 and 3.

The statements were tear jerking, awe inspiring, and for me a bit embarrassing. I was embarrassed because as the victims described their journeys they almost all mentioned the funds that were set up to help them with medical and psychological expenses and I was embarrassed that I didn’t donate. I’m going to fix that wrong soon.

Tear jerking – the damage that a 4500 pound vehicle going 35 mph does to a human is insane. We learned from the coroners when they were on the stand that it is normal for people to be blasted out of their shoes and to have road rash on their feet during these types of collisions. For those who survived, there were incredible injuries that took countless hours of care by family to recover from and the stories of how these families came through it all (and the wonders of western medicine) had me simply slackjawed. These people had to bring themselves from the brink of exhaustion over and over to help their children or other loved ones through therapy, surgeries, and all the rest. I almost cried several times and I really don’t cry.

Awe inspiring – many told their stories of how, after the tragedy, the community came through to help in any way possible. That could have been from helping someone who was injured to Wisconsin native NFL star JJ Watt paying for funeral expenses. I was truly touched by how the community all banded together to help.

Religious adherence – there was a Catholic group who marched in the parade. Almost to a person, these people in their victim statements showed forgiveness to Brooks for what he did. That is amazing to me.

In general, I was simply in awe of all of the people who held it together to get through their statements. Naturally, Brooks rolled his eyes, made fake clapping noises and in general, disrespected those affected.

Up above I mentioned “other”. While all of the victim statements were moving, two stood out. One was a man who destroyed the SovCit argument and reminded Brooks what he was there and we were here because of “We The People”. Our society elects legislatures who make laws and our courts administer these laws. It was a wonderful America moment.

One other man threw shade at Milwaukee district attorney John Chisolm. He rightly noted Brooks’ lengthy criminal record before the parade murders and raged at the local DA not putting him in jail. This doesn’t even mention the crimes Brooks committed in Nevada. This man hit the nail on the head and brought a few things full circle for me.

A few years ago I was on the way to work and I saw in my rear view mirror a car that had to have been going 125mph. I said “Oh My” and before I got out “God” he had sideswiped my car swerving to narrowly hit the car in the lane to the right of me and destroying the front right quarter of my vehicle. My Acura (nod to the engineering of that vehicle) jumped just a tiny bit but I was able to get it under control, and off the road. I called the cops. As it ended up this guy did almost the exact same thing as Brooks did. Brooks had just been tapping a tune on his girlfriend and was fleeing for some reason (maybe she called the cops?) and ended up at the parade route in Waukesha. The guy who wrecked my car and literally almost killed me, I found out later, was just at his girlfriends house beating her up and was fleeing to his house when we crossed paths on the Beltline in Madison. As with Brooks, the defendant in my incident had a criminal record a mile long in two states (in fact WAY longer than Brooks) and there was simply no reason he should have been out menacing the public. I was fine, but very lucky. Those in Waukesha, not. I sort of keep hoping for street justice for the guy who wrecked my car as he has committed more crimes since the day we crossed paths. I guess that puts me closer to category “1” or “2” above, in reality.

Today is the end of the Waukesha Parade tragedy until we hear about Brooks dying someday in an obscure headline. So many lives have been touched in terrible ways but I hope everyone involved can heal physically and mentally.

12 thoughts on “Thoughts on the Waukesha Christmas Parade Trial”

  1. Is it humanly possible for one to be dispassionate enough to both forgive the personal harm he did one and still hold that for human justice and the safety of us all he must die? Emotions easily cloud one or the other.

  2. I would hazard a guess that his attitude and actions during the trial were all things that he had done during his other numerous court appearances, and they worked before. He’s not crazy stupid, he’s crazy cunning.

  3. If you want coverage, while it may not be utterly complete, the gaps are easily enough filled in, may I suggest Rekeita Law’s channel on Rumble for the majority of the trial itself, with appearances by Andrew Branca (Law of Self Defense) who also covered parts of the trial separately. Other commentary can be found at Natalie Baker’s youtube channel who had also helped cover the Rittenhouse trial with Rekeita.

    All of these channels not only have the court proceedings, but go into detail on all of the legal issues involved at each point. And Nick Rekeita is incredibly funny to boot.

  4. we are commanded to forgive, but this was such an atrocity, I guess demon possession might explain it, it might explain John Chisholm as well,

    the Death Penalty should be swift and sure to be effective,

  5. This “forgiveness” from religious groups mystifies me.

    Now I totally understand the concept because you can’t keep raging against someone without harming yourself. But how do you “forgive” someone who does not believe their transgression to be wrong? I think that cheapens the term.

    I would say true forgiveness only comes to someone who wants forgiveness and realizes they are wrong

    Years ago someone close to me was murdered and I sat through the trial watching the defendant.

    The defendant denied it right up to the guilty verdict. And I believe that he believed his innocence.

    I felt no rage nor forgiveness

    As far as I was concerned he was dead to me

    Whether they executed him or gave him prison made no difference although I found out years later looking at possibility of parole he died of COVID-19 in prison

    I viewed that as a bit of divine retribution

    The thought of having spent years in prison final freedom only to die of COVID-19.

    But who knows?

    All of those lives affected are scarred for life

    Personally I came to the conclusion that there is evil in the world. Now that kind of statement on the surface would elicit a laugh I’m sure as one would think I am “late to the party”.

    But I don’t mean “evil” as someone decides to do bad things to another on their own volition but evil in a spiritual sense

    That is something that controls a person who excepts this evil willingly

    How else do you explain some things in the world done unspeakable evil to others with no conscience?

    I suppose that’s the definition of a sociopath

    And does this capacity to do these unspeakable things just come from brain chemistry or is it a spiritual demonic thing that inhabits some people willingly?

    He probably will be killed in prison and that in itself has mystified me.

    Just as among the most institutionalized prisoners in the prison has its own hierarchy and I am told rapists and child molesters are at the bottom. Probably child killers too.

    But will this guy be killed because some prisoner wants Noeriety or he’s at the bottom of the hierarchy?

    Questions, questions.

    It’s far as I’m concerned that guy is just evil. That’s some thing that most people on the left cannot understand. There’s just some people that are damned evil and there’s no remorse or rehabilitation

  6. The fact is, not everyone agrees on what forgiveness means. I think JoshScorcher put it well in his video on the ToonKriticY2K pedophilia scandal.

    “The word ‘forgiveness’, for most Christians, holds a drastically different meaning than for most secular audiences. First, I want to talk about what we DON’T mean. Some think that when we say ‘forgiveness’, we mean that we need to run up and hug this guy, and have all sorts of lovey-dovey feelings towards him, or that we mean forgive and forget. NO. We don’t believe that. No one in their right MIND would defend nor absolve Toon’s actions. … The law is very clear that he needs to pay for what he did, both the laws of the land and the laws of God. I am in TOTAL agreement with everyone.

    “Another thing we don’t mean is to dismiss the pain that Toon’s victims are going through. To all of Toon’s victims, we hear how much you’ve suffered, and we do want you to be heard. We are sorry that you had to fight through the pain for so long, and we’re grateful that you had the courage to speak up. … You should know that all of us just want for you to heal. …

    “As for what we DID mean: It should be noted that the secular and popular definition of forgiveness is synonymous with acceptance. Ever since the beginning, people have been telling us that forgiveness should be earned. Going on THAT definition, yes! I agree, acceptance must be earned. The Christian definition of forgiveness, however, means something else entirely. It is rooted in something that is not a feeling and cannot be earned. I think it’s important to know that when I or Doc say ‘forgiveness’, we do not mean that someone should not still be punished for a sin. We simply mean that they should be treated without cruelty[.] … My beliefs empirically state that we must love everyone as we love ourselves, and as such, if I was to commit a serious crime, even though I may believe my intentions were good, I know that I should turn myself in and face the consequences of my actions.”

  7. Justice.

    Within about one year after Mr. Brooks drove his vehicle into Christmas parade, he was given a public trial and found guilty. One might ask why it took about 12 months to find someone guilty when an obvious crime was committed and the culprit was immediately caught. Back in 1901, President McKinley’s assassin was tried, found guilty, & executed within 2 months of the shooting.

    About two years after some US citizens entered the People’s House — hardly a criminal act — some of them are still being held in jail without even a trial date having been set.

    The US Constitution mutters something about a right to a speedy trial … but cross the Ruling Democrats and that does not count for anything. Yes, “Justice” does not mean what it used to mean.

  8. The same people who misuse biblical verses of forgiveness tend to overlook this one:

    But if you do wrong, be afraid, for rulers do not bear the sword for no reason. They are God’s servants, agents of wrath to bring punishment on the wrongdoer.

    There are other verses dealing with rulers who do evil – looks like we live in interesting times.

  9. The members of the victims’ families could forgive the murderer for what he did to them personally. Perhaps one could make a case that the family members also may forgive in the names of their dead relatives. But no third-party has standing to offer forgiveness.

    In any case the issue of forgiveness distracts from the main issue, which is the ideologically and politically driven hubris that impels lefty prosecutors to release repeat offenders with feigned ignorance and reckless disregard for the likely consequences.

  10. The convict chose to be evil. Some will blame his childhood experience, his lack of a father figure, or other personal experiences. I do not. There are many who suffered more during their childhood, who lacked a father figure and all the rest who did not, NOT choose to mow down their fellow citizens who had done nothing personally to the convict. It was purely malice, and done with free will, purposefully. I do not know if sociopathic tendencies are considered mental illnes or just a statement of attitude, but from limited knowledge, think the convict was of that nature. I think it is the extreme end of narcissism, but not an excuse for murderous acts of any sort.

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