Highland Park IL shooting: July 4 parade shooting leaves 6 dead, 30 hurt; person of interest Robert Crimo III detained

HIGHLAND PARK, Ill. — A gunner fired an Independence Day parade from a rooftop in suburban Chicago, spraying the crowd with gunshots initially mistaken for fireworks before hundreds of panicked revelers of all ages fled in terror. At least six people were killed and at least 30 were injured.

An hours-long manhunt during which residents were chased into businesses or given police escorts to their homes ended with a traffic stop and brief chase Monday night when authorities arrested a man they described as a person of interest. They gave no motive for the attack in Highland Park, a close-knit community on the shores of Lake Michigan that has long attracted the rich and sometimes famous.

The 4th of July shooting was just the latest to destroy the rituals of American life. Schools, churches, grocery stores and now community parades have all become graveyards in recent months. This time, the bloodshed came as the nation sought to find cause to celebrate its founding and the bonds that still hold it together.

“It definitely hits a lot harder when it’s not just your hometown but it’s right in front of you,” said resident Ron Tuazon as he and a friend returned to the parade route Monday afternoon to pick up chairs, blankets and a children’s bike. and his family left when the shooting started.

“It’s common now,” said Touazon. “We’re not blinking anymore. Until the laws change, it’s going to be more of the same.”

MORE: Grandfather, lifelong member of synagogue among parade shooting victims

The shooting occurred at a point along the parade route where many residents had staked out prime viewing spots early in the day for the annual celebration.

Among them was Nicolas Toledo, who was visiting family in Illinois from Mexico. He was shot and died at the scene, his granddaughter, Xochil Toledo, told the Chicago Sun-Times. Also killed was Jacki Sundheim, a lifelong colleague and “beloved” staff member at nearby North Shore Congregation Israel, which announced her death on its website.

Dozens of bullets sent hundreds of marchers fleeing – some visibly bloodied. They left a trail of abandoned objects that showed everyday life suddenly, violently disrupted: a box of chocolate chip cookies spilled on the grass; a Chicago Cubs kids cap. baby carriages, some with American flags.

“There’s no safe place,” said Highland Park resident Barbara Harte, 73, who had stayed away from the parade for fear of a mass shooting but later ventured out of her home.

Highland Park Police Chief Lou Jogmen said an officer pulled over Robert E. Crimo III about 5 miles (8 kilometers) north of the shooting scene, several hours after police released the man’s photo and warned that he was probably armed and dangerous.

Authorities initially said Crimo, whose father was once a Highland Park mayoral candidate, was 22, but an FBI report and Crimo’s social media listed him as 21.

I’M WATCHING: The video captures the moment police arrest a person of interest

Police declined to immediately identify Crimo as a suspect, but said identifying him as a person of interest, releasing his name and other information publicly was a serious step.

Lake County Major Crime Task Force spokesman Christopher Covelli said at a news conference that “several of the deceased victims” died at the scene and one died at the hospital. Lake County Coroner Jennifer Banek said the five people killed in the parade were adults, but she did not have information on the sixth.

Police have not released details about the victims, but Toledo’s granddaughter told the Sun-Times that Toledo had spent most of his life in Morelos, Mexico. Xochil Toledo said she remembers looking at her grandfather, who was in his 70s, as a motorcade passed them.

“He was so happy,” she said. “I’m glad to live in the moment.”

Xochil Toledo said her father tried to shield her grandfather and was shot in the arm. her boyfriend was also shot in the back and was taken by someone to a nearby hospital because they weren’t sure there would be enough ambulances for all the victims.

Roberto Velasco, Mexico’s director of North American affairs, said on Twitter that two Mexicans were also injured.

Sundheim had spent decades on the staff of North Shore Israel Church, teaching early in the church’s preschool and later serving as Events and B’nei Mitzvah Coordinator, “all with tireless dedication,” the church said in its statement announcing the death. her. .

“Jackie’s work, kindness and warmth touched us all,” the statement said.

SEE ALSO: Highland Park 4th of July parade survivors speak out

NorthShore University Health Center admitted 26 patients after the attack. All but one had gunshot wounds, said Dr. Brigham Temple, medical director of emergency preparedness. Their ages ranged from 8 to 85, and Temple estimated that four or five were children.

“It is devastating that an American holiday has been torn apart by our only American plague,” Illinois Governor JB Pritzker said at a news conference.

“While we celebrate the Fourth of July only once a year, mass shootings have become a weekly—yes, weekly—American tradition.”

Since the beginning of the year, there have been 15 shootings where four or more people have been killed, including in Highland Park, according to the Associated Press/USA TODAY/Northeastern University mass killings database.

As is customary on holiday weekends, nearby Chicago experienced dozens of shootings. Eight people were killed in shootings in the city over the July 4 weekend, according to the police department. Another sixty were shot.

However, the city saw fewer shootings than last year’s Independence Day weekend.

The marcher opened fire around 10:15 a.m., when the parade was about three-quarters of the way through, authorities said.

VIDEO: Gov. Pritzker angers more innocent lives lost to gun violence

Highland Park Police Chief Chris O’Neill, the incident commander at the scene, said the gunman apparently used a “tall rifle” to fire from a spot on top of a commercial building where it was “very hard to see him ». He said the rifle was recovered at the scene. Police also found a ladder attached to the building.

Teams of FBI agents on Tuesday rummaged through trash cans, looked under picnic blankets and scoured Highland Park’s Central Avenue as they searched for evidence at the scene of the shooting.

Highland Park Mayor Nancy Rotering told NBC’s “Today” show that she did not know where the gun came from, but that it was “legally obtained.”

President Joe Biden said Monday that he and first lady Jill Biden were “shocked by the senseless gun violence that has once again brought grief to an American community this Independence Day.”

In recent days, Biden signed the most sweeping gun violence bill passed by Congress in decades, a compromise that reflected both progress on a long-intractable issue and a deep partisan divide that persists.

Crimo, who goes by the name Bobby, was an aspiring rapper under the stage name Awake the Rapper, posting dozens of videos and songs on social media, some ominous and violent.

In an animated video captured by YouTube, Crimo raps about armies “walking in the dark” as a drawing of a man pointing a rifle, a body on the ground, and another figure with hands up in the distance appears.

Crimo’s father, Bob, a longtime deli owner, ran unsuccessfully for mayor of Highland Park in 2019, calling himself “a person for the people.”

The community of about 30,000 on Chicago’s North Shore has mansions and sprawling lakeside estates and was once home to NBA legend Michael Jordan.

Gina Troiani and her 5-year-old son lined up with her kindergarten class ready to walk the parade route when she heard a loud sound she thought were fireworks — until she heard people yelling for a shooter.

“We’re just starting to run in the opposite direction,” he told The Associated Press. “There were people who were separated from their families, looking for them. Others just dropped their wagons, grabbed their children and started running.”

Mass shootings in the US

So far in 2022, there have been 308 mass shootings through July 4th.

The Gun Violence Archive, which defines a mass shooting as a shooting in which four or more people are injured or killed, not including the shooter, 692 mass shootings in 2021, 610 in 2020 and 417 in 2019.

July 4th had the highest number of mass shootings and the highest number of injuries of any day in 2021.

There were 11 mass shootings on Independence Day, with 51 injured.

July also had the most mass shootings of any month in 2021 with 86, June had the second highest with 77.


Foody contributed from Chicago. Associated Press writers Mike Balsamo in New York, David Koenig in Dallas, Jeff Martin in Woodstock, Georgia, Fabiola Sánchez in Monterrey, Mexico, Jim Mustian in New Orleans, Bernard Condon in New York and Martha Irvine and Mike Householder in Highland contributed. Park. reference.

Copyright © 2022 by The Associated Press. All rights reserved.

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Highland Park IL shooting: July 4 parade shooting leaves 6 dead, 30 hurt; person of interest Robert Crimo III detained Source link Highland Park IL shooting: July 4 parade shooting leaves 6 dead, 30 hurt; person of interest Robert Crimo III detained

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