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Defense motions denied in fatal parade attack in Wisconsin

WAUKESHA, Wis. (AP) — A judge on Friday refused to dismiss the case against a man accused of killing six people and injuring dozens of others when he allegedly drove his SUV through a Christmas parade in southern Wisconsin last year.

Public defenders sought to have the case against Darrell Brooks Jr. dismissed in Waukesha County Circuit Court based a July 1 search of the defendant’s jail cell. Investigators and prosecutors were looking for information related to Brooks’ recent decision to change his plea to not guilty by reason of mental disease or defect.

His attorneys say the warrant for the search was deficient and that the action violated Brooks’ attorney-client privilege.

In denying the motion, Judge Jennifer Dorow said the paperwork seized, photocopied and return to the jail cell was not privileged material.

Dorow also rejected a motion to suppress some statements Brooks made to investigators after defense attorneys argued that Brooks continued to be questioned after stating he wished to invoke his right to remain silent.

Brooks, 40, faces nearly 80 charges, including six homicide counts, in connection with the Nov. 21 incident in Waukesha. He pleaded not guilty in February, then in June changed that plea to not guilty by reason of mental disease or defect.

At one point during the motions hearing Waukesha County District Attorney Susan Opper asked the judge to note that Brooks appeared to have been sleeping during the proceeding. Dorow ordered a break and when the parties returned to the courtroom, Brooks lashed out and yelled at the judge before he was surrounded by three deputies and taken from the courtroom.

On Thursday, Dorow granted a defense motion to dismiss six counts of homicide by intoxicated use of a vehicle against Brooks, saying a defendant can’t have multiple punishments for the same crime.

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