Darrell Brooks' jail letters seek '1 last shot'

We're getting a look inside the mind of the man charged with killing six people and injuring more than 60 when he drove his SUV through the Waukesha Christmas parade on Nov. 21. Darrell Brooks made his first statements to the media Wednesday, Dec. 1 from the Waukesha County Jail. On Thursday, FOX6 News obtained letters he previously wrote while behind bars. 

The two letters offer more insight into the mindset of Brooks, 39, who faces life in prison.

Darrell Brooks Jr.

Among several of his open cases is a child support case in Waukesha County. The child support case letters show Brooks requested leniency from court officials on two separate occasions. In one request dated November 2009, Brooks appears to have lost his Huber work release privileges. He blames his medications for causing him to stop somewhere he was not supposed to be. He says he is not trying to make excuses but says he missed the bus to go back to Huber and got lost until he called Huber and asked for directions. He ends his letter saying:

"I think it would be fair if I got one last shot at Huber, just one last shot, I promise I won’t let you down, you have my word on that."

In the next letter from September 2011, Brooks writes to a judge from a Wood County Jail cell, trying to explain why he has failed to pay his child support. He says his Social Security benefits have been cut off due to him being incarcerated. Once again, he says he is not trying to make excuses because he knows he has a responsibility. He asks the judge for a few months back on the street, so his benefits can be reinstated. He says he has struggled to find employment because of his mental health and being a felon has not helped. He ends his letter saying:

"All I ask for your honor is the opportunity to prove I can be the man my mother and god, and also myself, knows I can be."

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Prosecutors say Brooks drove his SUV into the parade in Waukesha on Nov. 21. Witnesses said he was swerving and appeared to be intentionally trying to hit people. He was arrested minutes later as he stood on the porch of a nearby house asking the homeowner to help him call a ride. Police said he had fled the scene of a domestic disturbance when he turned into the parade, although officers were not pursuing him at the time. He’s been charged with six counts of first-degree intentional homicide and ordered held on $5 million bail.

Sixteen days before the Waukesha Christmas parade, Darrell Brooks was in court in Milwaukee County, accused of running over the mother of his child in his Ford Escape. Despite a pretrial risk assessment that said he was very high risk for committing a new crime, Court Commissioner Cedric Cornwall set his bail at $1,000, and he was freed. 

In addition to that Milwaukee County case, Brooks is a defendant in another Milwaukee County case from 2020 in which he's charged with shooting at his nephew and another person.

Milwaukee County DA speaks after Darrell Brooks fallout

District Attorney John Chisholm appeared Thursday, Dec. 2 before a Milwaukee County board committee following the fallout in the Darrell Brooks case.

Open Record: Waukesha parade tragedy

A deeper look at the system and records missing from the story after a man is charged with plowing his SUV through a Waukesha holiday parade.