The father of the alleged shooter at the Highland Park Fourth of July parade, Robert “Bobby” Crimo III, was charged with felony reckless conduct on Friday by prosecutors in Lake County. The accusation stems from the fact that Robert Crimo Jr. sponsored his son’s firearm owner’s identity card.
State’s Attorney Eric Rinehart did not clarify why the sponsorship of Crimo Jr. amounted to a felony. Still, he implied that it was related to the father’s possible awareness of his difficult son’s past. Rinehart would not say this clearly, though.
Rinehart stated this during a press conference held at the Lake County courthouse in Waukegan. “He knew what he knew, and he signed the paperwork anyhow,” she claimed. “This was criminally reckless behavior, and it was a contributing cause to the bodily injury that the victims sustained on July 4,” the author writes.
Crimo Jr. is being prosecuted on seven separate counts of the charge, one for each victim of whom the attack took the life. The maximum sentence for the criminal offense of reckless behavior is three years in prison, but probation may also be an alternative. Rinehart reported that Crimo Jr. turned himself in to the Highland Park police department on Friday and is scheduled to appear in court for a bond hearing on Saturday.
Crimo Jr.’s attorney, George Gomez, who had stated in the past that his client had not been aware that Crimo III was a danger to anyone when he sponsored the FOID card, has criticized the allegations as being groundless and unprecedented.
“On the eve of the statute of limitations for reckless conduct related to the sponsorship of Crimo III’s FOID application, the Lake County state’s attorney hastily decided to charge my client,” Gomez said in a statement. “On the eve of the statute of limitations for reckless conduct related to the sponsorship of Crimo III’s FOID application.”
Every single parent in the United States of America, according to the state’s attorney in Lake County, understands precisely what is going on with their 19-year-old adult children and can be held criminally accountable for conduct performed nearly three years later, should be alarmed by this judgment. These allegations are entirely baseless, and we will defend ourselves against them at every turn.
“Mr. Crimo Jr. continues to feel terrible and sympathize with the individuals and families who were injured and lost loved ones on July 4 of this past year. However, these charges are politically motivated and a distraction from the real change that needs to occur in this country,” Mr. Crimo Jr. said. The prosecution asserts that Crimo III fired dozens of rounds into the crowd assembled in Highland Park for the Fourth of July parade from a vantage point atop a rooftop. There were seven fatalities and 48 injuries reported.
In what Rinehart described as a “premeditated and determined attack,” Crimo III has been charged with seven counts of first-degree murder in connection with the incident. The next time he is expected to appear in court is on January 31.
Meanwhile, according to the records filed by the police, officers were called to the residence of Robert Crimo Jr. and Denise Pesina a total of nine times between the years of 2010 and 2014 as a result of domestic altercations involving the couple. According to the records, neither individual had ever been accused of domestic abuse in Lake County.
In 2019, police reports from Highland Park claimed that officers were summoned to domestic cases involving the family and that they were told Crimo III had attempted suicide with a blade and threatened to kill “everyone.” As a result of Crimo III’s denial, no charges were brought against him.
Crimo III was labeled as a “clear and present threat” by local police and submitted to the Illinois State Police; however, in December 2019, the Illinois State Police granted his request for a FOID card with his father’s sponsorship.
Rinehart stated that because Crimo III was only 19 years old at the time, he could not legally acquire a firearm without the assistance of his father to obtain a FOID card, which is required. Crimo Jr. expressed to ABC News that he was stunned and felt “terrible” about the massacre but that he had “no regret” over assisting his son in gaining access to firearms.
According to the regulations that were in place at the time, the clear and present danger request was not recorded in the records kept by the state police. In the meantime, there was no evidence that anyone, including Cremo’s family or the police, had applied for a firearms restraining order, also known as a FRO, about him. Such an application would have permitted a judge to prevent him from purchasing guns based on evidence indicating that he posed a threat to himself or others.
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