NewsWaukesha Christmas Parade


Granddaughter of Dancing Granny pleads for timely trial for suspect

Posted at 3:58 PM, Apr 06, 2022
and last updated 2022-04-07 10:55:47-04

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WAUKESHA, Wis. — Earlier this week families of victims from the Waukesha Christmas Parade spoke in court about why they didn’t want to see suspect Darrell Brooks' trial delayed.

He’s the man charged with driving his car through the Christmas parade, hitting dozens of people and killing six.

We spoke with the granddaughter of a Dancing Granny who says her family needs justice soon rather than later.

Gabrielle Kamentz remembers the day of the Waukesha Christmas parade clearly.

"The day that the actual parade happened I was supposed to walk the banner, carry the banner. But my grandmother had taken over for me," said Kamentz.

Shortly after she learned what happened, she says she began frantically calling nearby hospitals. Her family hadn’t heard from her grandmother Ginny Sorenson.

“I got a call from my aunt that she was dead, that she had been run over by car and the Dancing Grannies were the ones to give us the news," said Kamentz.


Kamentz and her family are still grieving the tragic loss and she says they’re still waiting for closure.

"It needs to happen sooner than later," said Kamentz.

That’s why she decided to speak up in court against a motion to delay the trial of Darrell Brooks.

"I thought it would be difficult to read with him there, but in reality it was quite the opposite," she said. "I was kind of happy that he was there and listening to how I felt about it. And the part where I mention him needing to be locked up behind bars, I wanted him to hear that from me directly. He needed to hear that and hear my voice and my emotion when I read in front of the court."

Gabrielle letter to court

In her statement to the court she said, "we need to see justice on the day the trial was originally set for. And I don't think that we can rest easy or even find a sliver of peace until that is done."

The trial ended up being delayed a bit, but not as much as Gabrielle feared. In the meantime, she's already finding some peace in the memory of her grandma Ginny.

"She would walk in and her smile would light up a room. She was giver, she loved animals, she was a nurse, she loved caring for people. She was an incredible, selfless person."

And Kamentz said her grandmother inspired her to go to nursing school.

"I want to prove to her and honor her by becoming the best nurse possible," she said.

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