Waukesha Christmas Parade: SUV Crash That Killed 5, Injured 48 Is Not Terrorism Linked, Officials Say
Authorities believe the person of interest, who is now in custody, was fleeing another crime scene at the time of the attack, possibly a knife fight.
A Christmas parade in the suburbs of Milwaukee turned deadly Sunday afternoon when an SUV rammed through a barricade, killing at least five and injuring more than 40 others. Waukesha authorities have confirmed that the mass casualty event was not terror related during a Monday afternoon press conference.
"I just saw little girls flying through the air," a witness told CBS News. "You just saw multiple bodies thrown through the road, and you saw the lawn chairs and the blankets."
Of those killed include members of the Milwaukee Dancing Grannies, a beloved group of seniors who were known locally to make regular appearances at parades. “Those who died were extremely passionate Grannies,” the group wrote in a statement on Facebook.
At least a dozen of those injured were children, with 15 patients admitted into Children’s Wisconsin, a hospital that only treats pediatric patients, according to The New York Times.
The Archdiocese of Milwaukee wrote on Facebook that a priest, parishioners and students from a local Catholic school were among those injured.
“The car just flew past us, there was a lot of panic,” a 14-year-old marching in the parade with his school football team told The Times. “I’m still in a lot of shock.”
Other area hospitals reported patients in critical condition, the outlet reported.
“Today our community faced horror and tragedy in what should have been a community celebration,” Waukesha Mayor Shawn Reilly told press Sunday evening. “I’m deeply saddened to know that so many in our community went to a parade but ended up dealing with injury and heartache.”
Authorities believe the person of interest, who is now in custody, was fleeing another crime scene at the time of the attack, possibly a knife fight, CBS News reported. The Waukesha Police Department said there is no further threat to the public and they are continuing to investigate the incident, including what motivated the episode.
Authorities have not yet released nor confirmed the identities of any of the victims.
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