Darrell Brooks back in court, man charged in Waukesha Christmas parade tragedy
WAUKESHA, Wis. (CBS 58) -- The man charged in connection to the Waukesha Christmas parade tragedy was back in court Tuesday, March 29.
Darrell Brooks' defense team wants his trial moved to a different location.
Brooks is accused of driving an SUV into the parade route killing six people and leaving more than 60 others hurt.
The court is sending a questionnaire of roughly 100 questions to Waukesha residents to help decide if Brooks should face trial in Waukesha County or somewhere else.
The questionnaire is sealed. Questions discussed in court on Tuesday asked about the person's knowledge, involvement and relation to the Waukesha Christmas Parade and its victims.
"One of the goals of this questionnaire is to gauge the pretrial publicity and exposure to people close to this incident," Judge Jennifer Dorow said.
Dorow said there's more than 300,000 people eligible for jury duty in Waukesha County in 2022. The court is hoping a questionnaire will not only assess the defense's change of venue request, but also narrow the list for jury selection.
Both sides will be looking for answers that expose bias.
"We're trying to case a wide net anticipating potentials, right, that might not be relevant," Defense Attorney Jeremy Perri said.
They also tried to write the questionnaire in a way that wouldn't prompt someone to look the case up online before the trial begins.
"The concern, and I'm not going to speak for the defense, but the concern is to not taint the pool of potential jurors at this stage," Prosecution Attorney Susan Opper said.
Talk of closing future proceedings to the public and media also came up in court on Tuesday. Dorow did not come to a decision.
"We want to ensure fairness. Fairness for Mr. Brooks. Fairness for the state. Fairness for the public and the media who clearly has an interest," Dorow said.
The defense hinted that they would not be ready for trial by its scheduled date in October. If the trial is pushed back, the questionnaire would be, as well.