Committee questions Milwaukee Co. District Attorney and Chief Judge on Waukesha Parade suspect's low bail

Darrell Brooks
Posted at 5:45 PM, Dec 01, 2021
and last updated 2021-12-02 17:42:25-05

MILWAUKEE — The board is meeting now. Watch live:

Previous reporting:

Some Milwaukee County Supervisors want answers from the District Attorney and Chief Judge, about the bail system that allowed the man accused in the Waukesha Christmas parade attack out of jail for a violent crime, just a few weeks earlier.

"It is clear the system did not work. We need to understand why. We need to understand how this broke down (and) how often this break down has happened,” said Shawn Rolland, a Milwaukee County Supervisor.

Darrell Brooks
Darrell Brooks risk assessment

Darrell Brooks is accused of killing six people and injuring dozens of others when he drove into the Waukesha Christmas parade. Just a few weeks before the parade, prosecutors say Brooks ran over the mother of his child with his car in Milwaukee. Brooks received a $1,000 bail in connection with that charge, which District Attorney John Chisholm called too low.

Low bail
A bail set by a Milwaukee County Assistant District Attorney was later called "inappropriately low" by DA John Chisholm.

"In this particular case, the bail was set so low for someone who had a history of violent crime,” said Steven Shea, Milwaukee County Supervisor.

Chisholm along with Chief Judge Mary Triggiano will appear before the county's Judiciary, Safety and General Services Committee Thursday at 1:30 p.m.

The two declined TMJ4’s request for on interview, but Triggiano did recently speak with the New York Times. She's quoted as saying, "We are now facing, in Milwaukee County, a backlog to the tune of two years when it comes to trials. The whole ecosystem is interconnected, so everything - the courts, jails, bail - is affected by the crisis."

TMJ4 looked into the backlog back in March. At that time, Chisholm said more than 3,000 people were awaiting trial due the court system being temporarily shut down in 2020 due to the pandemic.

Milwaukee Court House

Neither Triggiano nor Chisholm have said publicly why Brooks' bail was set at a thousand dollars. But, some county supervisors say the public deserves those answers.

"We need to understand what changes can be made in the short term, so we can begin to restore people's trust at the end of the day. I think that's what this conversation is all about it's restoring trust in the criminal justice system,” said Rolland.

The Judiciary, Safety and General Services Committe hearing will take place virtually here. If you want to make a public comment you can do so here and following the instructions provided.

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