Illinois authorities have identified a 21-year-old named Robert “Bobby” E. Crimo III as a suspect in the Highland Park shooting that killed seven people on Monday.
Gunshots rang out at 10:14 a.m. local time, when the parade was roughly three-quarters of the way through, authorities said Monday afternoon.
The suspect was arrested around 6:30 p.m. after an eight-hour manhunt, according to CBS News. A wanted poster for the suspect described him as a thin, white man with brown hair who was believed to be driving a 2010 Silver Honda Fit. North Chicago authorities spotted his vehicle and he drove off but was later arrested without incident , reported CBS News.
At a news conference on Tuesday, Chris Covelli, spokesman for the Lake County Major Crimes Task Force, said authorities believe the suspect “planned the attack for several weeks.”
Prior to the arrest, the Federal Bureau of Investigation searched a house in Highwood, just over a mile from the shooting scene in Highland Park, according to WGN-TV. Axios reported that the shooting suspect lives in the house with his father and uncle.
On Tuesday, authorities said a total of seven people had been killed in the mass shooting.
—Jenna Barnes (@Jenna_Barnes) July 4, 2022
The weapon used in the shooting was obtained legally, authorities say
On Tuesday morning, Highland Park Mayor Nancy Rotering said the gun used in the shooting was obtained legally.
“I don’t know where the gun came from, but I know it was obtained legally, and I think at some point this nation needs to have a conversation about these weekly events involving the killing of dozens of people with legally obtained weapons.”, Rotering said today.
Covelli said the suspect was in possession of two rifles and several other firearms, all of which were purchased legally in his name. He owned a total of five firearms, Covelli said at a subsequent press conference on Tuesday.
“He bought the weapons locally in the area, so in the Chicago land area,” Covelli told reporters. “He was in possession of the gun on gun day. He was in possession of another gun in his vehicle when he was arrested by police.”
Covelli said the weapon used in the shooting was a “high-powered rifle that fired high-velocity bullets.”
“It was similar to an AR-15,” Covelli said, noting that police don’t believe the weapon was modified. He added that the shooting appeared to be “completely random” and that police have no clue the shooter was motivated by race, religion or any other protected status.
At an afternoon press conference, Covelli said that on two occasions authorities became aware of the suspect. Covelli said that in September 2019, Highland Park Police were told the suspect had said he was “going to kill everyone” and was in possession of knives.
Police showed up at his residence and confiscated 16 knives at the time, Covelli said, but were unaware of any other weapons at the time. Covelli added that in April, authorities received a wellness check call for the shooting suspect when an individual reported to the HPPD that he had attempted suicide.
Shooting suspect wore women’s clothing to blend in with panicked parade onlookers
Covelli said the suspect was wearing women’s clothing “in an attempt to hide” while fleeing the parade after the shooting.
“Investigators believe he did this to conceal his facial tattoos and his identity,” Covelli said.
“He walked to the house of his mother who lived in the area and he mingled with everyone as they ran almost like he was an innocent bystander as well,” the spokesperson said. of the font.
The suspect walked to his mother’s home not far from the parade and got into her vehicle before fleeing, Covelli said.
Video evidence played a “huge role” in identifying the suspect, Covelli said.
Covelli added that the department believes a female witness saw the suspect firing a gun from inside a red blanket behind a Ross clothing store immediately after the shooting, and called witnesses to share more information. .
Suspect reportedly posted videos showing mass murder
Mayor Rotering told Today she knew the suspect when he was “just a little boy”.
“I don’t believe he was known to the police until yesterday,” Rotering said. “I know him as someone who was a Cub Scout when I was the Cub Scout leader, and it’s one of those things where you step back and say, ‘What happened? How did someone get so angry, so hateful and then take it out on innocent people who were literally having a family day out? ‘”
NBC News reported that the shooting suspect rapped as “Awake” and released music videos depicting mass murders, including a school shooting and a police shooting. The YouTube videos were removed Monday night, by NBC.
“We know that several publications really reflected a plan and a desire to commit carnage well in advance,” Rotering told Today. “Someone clearly had a nervous breakdown, but I don’t even want to attribute it to mental health. I want us to talk about the fact that there are weapons of war on our streets, that people can legally get them, then take dozens of people.”
“This tragedy should never have come to our doorstep, and as a small town everyone knows someone who was directly affected by this,” Rotering told Today. “Our community will never recover from this injury.”
The charges are expected to be announced Tuesday afternoon, Covelli said.