The accused Highland Park shooter’s father faces up to three years in prison after being charged with reckless behavior.
Gunfire broke out at a Fourth of July parade in the heart of Highland Park, an Illinois suburb, forcing hundreds of people to flee for their lives. At least 24 individuals were hurt, and seven people died. The following day, seven counts of first-degree murder were brought against Robert E. Crimo III.
In a news conference streamed on Facebook, Lake County District Attorney Eric Reinhart stated that his father, Robert Crimo, Jr., was charged with seven felonies of reckless behavior on Friday. Each number, according to later statements by Reinhart, stands for one of the seven victims of the shooting: Nicolas Toledo, age 76; Jacki Sundheim, age 63; Katherine Goldstein, age 64; Irina McCarthy, age 35, and her husband Kevin McCarthy, age 37; Stephen Strauss, age 88; and Eduardo Uvaldo, age 69.
When Crimo, Jr. chose to sign his son’s application for a firearm owner’s ID, or FOID card, on December 16, 2019, Reinhart claimed that Crimo, Jr. “took a reckless and unnecessary risk.”
Reinhart continued, “His son was 19 years old at the time he signed the application and could not, let me say that again, could not, receive a FOID card, and as a result, could not lawfully purchase a firearm without his father’s assistance in that application process.”
According to Reinhart, according to the law, persons between the ages of 18 and 20 can only obtain FOID cards and weapons with the permission of their parents or guardians.
“The best people to make this decision are the parents or guardians of the youngster. He continued, “In this case, the system failed when Robert Crimo, Jr. sponsored his son. They are the first line of protection. Despite knowing what he knew, he nevertheless signed the document. This was grossly negligent and a contributory factor in the victims’ July 4th injuries.”
Later, Reinhart claimed that even though the FOID application had been granted, Crimo, Jr.’s activities were “reckless” due to “the information the father knew about his son.” Regarding the facts and the details Crimo, Jr. knew about his son, Reinhart indicated in the briefing that he would withhold specifics.
He added, “The youngsters’ parents are aware of what is happening to them. He is aware of what is happening. Hence his involvement in the FOID procedure in this particular instance was reckless.”
He stated that since then, adjustments had been made to the FOID application process.
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Shortly before the Friday news appearance, according to Reinhart, Crimo, Jr. turned himself into the police. He may receive anything from probation to a three-year sentence for each count he faces. If Crimo, Jr. is sentenced to time in prison, he might serve both terms concurrently for a total of three years in jail.
His booking document shows Crimo, Jr.’s bond is $500,000. Reinhart stated that his bond hearing is planned for Saturday morning.
Regarding the allegations against Crimo, Jr., Reinhart stated that the victims “deserve both this office and the legislature to take immediate action. We’ve let a vocal minority stifle the willow majority for far too long. to prevent the passage of sensible gun safety measures. Communities in ruins deserve better.”
“Although it is a peculiarly American tragedy, gun violence is not a given. It’s a choice.”
Throughout the briefing, Reinhart stated that “everyone needs to feel safe in every neighborhood.” “We’ve allowed gun violence to decimate lives and neighborhoods for far too long. We have enabled fear to permeate every aspect of American society. No brother should feel anxious about handing off their smaller sibling at school. No aunt needs to hesitate about bringing her niece to a neighborhood BBQ. Furthermore, no daughter should be afraid to accompany her mother to the July 4th parade.”
According to reports, Crimo, Jr.’s attorney George M. Gomez responded to the accusations and stated, “At 2:00 p.m. today, Mr. Robert Crimo Jr. willingly turned himself into the Highland Park Police Department. We firmly feel that these accusations are without merit and unheard of.”
He went on, “The Lake County State’s County hurriedly decided to charge my client on the eve of the statute of limitations for reckless conduct relating to the sponsorship of Crimo III’s FOID application. Every single parent in the United States of America should be alarmed by this decision because, according to the Lake County State’s Attorney, they are fully aware of what is happening with their adult children, who are 19 years old and are subject to criminal prosecution for actions taken almost three years ago.”
Gomez declared that he would “fight” the “absurd” allegations “all the way.” Gomez did not immediately meet a request for comment from PEOPLE.