Person in Custody After SUV Plows Into Crowd at Wisconsin Christmas Parade, Injuring at Least 28. “Some” fatalities were reported, but police declined to provide a number of those who died.
One person was taken into custody Sunday after an SUV plowed through a crowd at a Christmas parade in Waukesha, Wisconsin, resulting in an unspecified number of deaths and at least 28 injuries, according to police.
At approximately 4:39 p.m., an SUV went through a barricade at Gasper Avenue and Main Street and then proceeded to drive into the crowd that gathered for the parade, Waukesha Police Chief Daniel Thompson said.
At least 11 adults and 15 children were injured, according to police and local hospitals.
Information about the severity of injuries wasn’t immediately known, authorities said. “Some” fatalities were reported, but police declined to provide a number of those who died, citing privacy of the victims’ families.
SUV Christmas Parade Accident Video
As of 8 p.m., Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin said it received 15 patients from the incident, with no fatalities reported at the time.
Aurora Medical Center in Summit was treating a total of 13 patients late Sunday – three in critical condition, four in serious condition and six in fair condition, according to a statement.
The event was live-streamed on Facebook, and a portion of the video showed a red SUV driving through the parade at what appeared to be a high rate of speed followed by gasps and sirens.
Authorities said the vehicle was recovered, and one “person of interest” was taken into custody.
One video shows the SUV striking what appears to be members of a marching band and several others along the parade route before driving on. The sound of the marching band heard before the SUV approaches is replaced by screams.
Police said at one point an officer discharged their gun, firing shots at the suspect’s vehicle in an attempt to stop it.
The scene was said to be safe and secure in the hours following the incident, police said at an 8 p.m. news conference.
Angelito Tenorio, a West Allis alderman who is running for Wisconsin state treasurer, told The Associated Press that he was watching the parade with his family when they saw the SUV come speeding into the area.
“Then we heard a loud bang,” Tenorio said. “And after that, we just heard deafening cries and screams from the crowd, from the people at the parade. And people started rushing, running away with tears in their eyes crying.”
Tenorio said he saw about 10 people, children and adults, on the ground who appeared to have been hit by the vehicle.
“It just happened so fast,” he said. “It was pretty horrifying.”
The Waukesha school district canceled classes Monday stating that they will have “additional counselors available” for students and staff.
An FBI spokesperson said its Milwaukee field office was aware of the incident and that local and state authorities were leading the response. The White House is also monitoring the situation, according to a statement.
On Twitter, Wisconsin Governor Tony Evers said that he and his wife are “praying for Waukesha tonight and all the kids, families, and community members affected by this senseless act.”
The parade is sponsored by the city’s Chamber of Commerce. This year’s edition was the 59th of the event that’s held each year the Sunday before Thanksgiving.