JJ Watt has officially offered to cover the funeral costs for those killed in the Waukesha Parade tragedy.
On Sunday, November 21, a Christmas Parade ended in tragedy after an SUV came barreling through the crowd killing six individuals and injuring many others. Five people between the ages 52-81 were pronounced dead hours later, while 8-year-old Jackson Sparks was later pronounced dead earlier this week.
Watt — who is a Wisconsin native himself — has offered to front the bill for the funeral services for the victims killed in the catastrophe, which Watt called “horrific,” per TMZ.
The NFL star, 32, went to school in Pewaukee, Wisconsin, which is just a few miles away from where the deadly parade took place over the weekend.
The outlet also reported this isn’t the first time Watt has given back to those in need. In 2018, he reportedly offered to cover the funeral costs of those who died in the Santa Fe High School shooting, and he also raised $37 million to help rebuild communities destroyed by Hurricane Harvey in 2017.
Meanwhile, the suspect who has been accused of driving the vehicle that sped through the parade crowd was arrested and is now facing murder charges.
Witnesses reported to authorities after the incident that the vehicle “appeared to be intentionally moving side to side,” without stopping or slowing down after hitting multiple people, according to AP News.
Darrell Brooks — a 39-year-old Milwaukee man — was taken into police custody and charged with five felony counts of first-degree intentional homicide before it was announced that a sixth person had been killed.
Waukesha County Court Commissioner Kevin Costello set Brooks’ cash bail at $5 million as recommended by the prosecutors, admitting that the amount was “extraordinarily high” but “warranted.”
"I've not seen anything like this in my very long career," Costello said of the tragedy, per Newsweek. “It's an extraordinarily serious case with an extraordinary history of this gentleman of fleeing, of hurting people, of not following court orders, not following criminal laws, not following, just, your societal norms.”
An additional homicide charge against Brooks is expected to come Friday or early next week. He is set to appear again in court in January 2022.