Robert E. Crimo III was charged with seven first-degree murders, “charges that will guarantee a life sentence without the possibility of parole”: Eric Rinehart, state attorney of the Earl of Lake, the scene of the shooting during the parade of the 4th July. The prosecutor has announced “many other charges”, including for attempted murders and psychological victims, and will ask that the young man be detained without the possibility of release on bail.
crime he was “seriously thinking” of carrying out another massacre in the Madison area, also in Illinois, police said.
An attack “premeditated for weeks” but without a precise motive. 24 hours after the 4th of July massacre on the outskirts of Chicago, details of the massacre begin to emerge, including the profile of the killer, Robert E. Crimo III. A lonely, frustrated and marginalized 20-year-old, a rapper with a passion for violent rhymes, Donald Trump fan in his spare time.
On the morning of the Independence Day parade, the killer climbed to the roof of a building along the way using a fire escape with a high-capacity rifle in hand and began firing on the unsuspecting crowd. Seventy shots, police said, which could have killed far more people than the seven he shot and the 38 he injured. Then he dropped his gun and mingled with the crowd wearing women’s clothes, perhaps even a wig, to blend in and hide the many tattoos on his face and neck. So Crimo went straight to his mother’s house and took his Honda before being stopped by the police who found another rifle in the car. A very well-studied sequence of events, which suggest that the attack was “premeditated for weeks”, yet without a specific goal.
At the moment, in fact, the police have not found a motive and have excluded religious or racist motivations. The random attack of a freak who broke the lives of seven people with a purchased weapon, once again, legally and easily. And that perhaps, once again, could have been avoided, as emerges from the examination of his social profile but also from two episodes of 2019. The first is her attempted suicide in April of that year, an event dealt with by mental health services. The second five months later, when he threatened to “kill everyone”, as investigators reported, adding that the threat was aimed at family members. The intervening agents seized 16 knives, a sword and a dagger but did not proceed with the arrest because there was no valid reason and the family members did not report. Despite this, the young man, who is now collaborating in the investigation, managed to buy five weapons, including rifles and pistols. Analyzing the social profiles it also emerges that Crimo, known by the nick name of ‘Awake the rapper’, had exhibited violent behavior despite, as always in these cases, the family trivially describes him as a “quiet and lonely” boy.
In one of the videos published by the killer, and now removed from Youtube along with all those he had posted, we see a computer created character in tactical gear and a gun in his hand pointed at a kneeling person, his hands raised begging for mercy. In another there is Crimo himself wearing a helmet and a bulletproof vest in a schoolroom next to an American flag and a voiceover saying, “I need to leave now. It is my destiny. Everything has led to this; nothing can stop me, not even myself “. In another video the killer shouts: “Freedom. Freedom. Freedom. Freedom? Freedom.” And again: “I hate it when others get more attention than me on the Internet”.
Then there is the passion for Trump. In one video Crimo expects a presidential procession together with other supporters, in another he participates in a rally of the former president in Chicago in September 2020 disguised as the character of the famous children’s book series ‘Where’s Waldo’. While on June 27, 2021, he posted a photo of himself wrapped in Trump’s flag, ‘Make America Great Again’. Analysts are unsure whether all these details could characterize the July 4 killer as a tout court supporter of the former president.. But he was certainly immersed in that subculture that proliferates on the fringes of the Internet and which was also imbued with Uvalde’s killer, Salvador Ramos, and many other massacres before them. Thus, for the umpteenth time, America finds itself mourning its victims with flags at half mast in a city, Highland Park, which banned assault weapons nine years ago and in one state, the Illinois, which has one of the most restrictive gun laws in the US and one of the lowest rates of assault weapons.