Will accused Highland Park shooter’s parents face legal trouble in July 4 parade attack? EXPLAINED

Will accused Highland Park shooter’s parents face legal trouble in July 4 parade attack? EXPLAINED

CHICAGO — In 2019, Robert E. Crimo III was too younger to use independently for a gun license in Illinois.

His father sponsored the appliance simply months after an unidentified member of the family known as police to report that the son had a set of knives and had threatened to “kill everybody.”

Illinois State Police reviewed the license software and located no motive to disclaim it as a result of Crimo had no arrests, no legal document, no severe psychological well being issues, no orders of safety and no different habits that will disqualify him.

RELATED: Accused parade shooter’s dad says he does not remorse sponsoring FOID card, says system wants overhaul

By 2021, the 21-year-old man had bought not less than 5 weapons. Now he is accused of utilizing a semi-automatic rifle to open hearth on a crowd of unsuspecting July 4 paradegoers within the Chicago suburb of Highland Park, killing seven individuals and wounding not less than 30 extra.

The accused gunman’s mother and father are additionally beneath scrutiny because the reeling group questions why they apparently supported their son’s curiosity in weapons solely months after he reportedly threatened suicide and violence.

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Anti-gun violence advocates are inspired to see police and prosecutors investigating anybody who could have contributed to the assault, together with the accused shooter’s mother and father.

“For too lengthy we have now solely held the person that’s pulled the set off accountable for his or her actions which have led to the violence,” stated Christian Heyne, vice chairman of coverage on the Brady marketing campaign. “However the extra we perceive about gun violence on the entire, the extra we perceive that different individuals made it attainable.”

Authorized specialists, although, stated it is extremely tough to show legal fees towards a shooter’s father or mother or guardian. Extra usually, they face civil lawsuits the place authorized requirements of proof are much less stringent.

That’s the case within the Could 14 capturing in Buffalo, New York, the place 10 Black individuals died in an assault by an 18-year-old white gunman. The prosecutor there has stated nobody else is predicted to be criminally charged, though court docket filings point out the mother and father could face not less than one lawsuit.

One exception continues to be shifting by a Michigan state court docket, the place in December a prosecutor charged the mother and father of a 15-year-old boy with involuntary manslaughter following the deadly capturing of 4 college students on the teenager’s highschool. He was charged as an grownup with homicide and terrorism.


Police have stated Crimo had two earlier encounters with authorities.

In April 2019, Crimo tried suicide by machete, in accordance with a police report that famous a “historical past of makes an attempt.”

HERE: Redacted Highland Park Police Report From September 2019 Launched

In September 2019, police returned after a member of the family reported that Crimo had a set of knives and had threatened to “kill everybody.” However in accordance with Illinois State Police, each Crimo and his mom disputed the specter of violence.

“The person informed police he didn’t really feel like hurting himself or others and was provided psychological well being sources,” the assertion stated.

ALSO SEE: ‘Screaming out for assist’: Highland Park capturing suspect’s social media affected by hatred

Police have stated father Bob Crimo – a former candidate for mayor of Highland Park – later informed investigators the knives belonged to him, and authorities returned them.

When the youthful Crimo utilized for a state gun license in December 2019, his father supported it, a requirement for candidates who’re beneath 21.


Proving a legal cost requires convincing jurors or a decide of guilt past an affordable doubt. That is tough in a situation the place the defendant did not personally take motion, stated Paul Cain, a professor of legislation at Northern Illinois College.

“They’ve to indicate the mother and father aided and abetted crime indirectly for there to be an accountability based mostly cost,” Cain stated. “That is the getaway automobile driver who did not really go in and rob the shop at gunpoint … however carried out some motion to permit that theft to go ahead.”

RELATED: Highland Park parade capturing suspect deliberate for weeks; gun legally bought, authorities say

Katherine Schweit, retired FBI agent who developed the company’s lively shooter program, agreed that prosecutors’ problem is exhibiting a robust connection to the crime – “the place they might have prevented it and selected to not.”

“Simply because any individual is aware of that somebody is not as protected as the remainder of us would love them, that does not imply that individual might be charged,” she stated. “There needs to be some stage of proximate trigger connected.”

SEE ALSO | ‘This is not the father or mother’s fault’: Accused Highland Park shooter’s mother and father ‘distraught,” legal professional says

Lake County State’s Legal professional Eric Rinehart declined this week to say whether or not his workplace will pursue fees towards Crimo’s mother and father.

In media interviews, Bob Crimo has stated he doesn’t anticipate to face fees and doesn’t imagine he did something flawed by serving to his son get a gun license by the state’s established course of.


The involuntary manslaughter fees filed in Michigan towards James and Jennifer Crumbley made worldwide headlines as a result of the choice was such a departure from the norm.

Prosecutors accused the Crumbleys of failing to maintain their son away from the semi-automatic rifle his father had bought and taking no motion after faculty officers discovered a drawing and written threats on the boy’s desk hours earlier than the capturing.

“The notion {that a} father or mother may learn these phrases and in addition know that their son had entry to a lethal weapon that they gave him is unconscionable – it is legal,” Oakland County prosecutor Karen McDonald stated as she introduced the fees.

The Crumbleys have pleaded not responsible, and their attorneys have stated they have been devastated after studying their son was accused within the killings.

RELATED: Illinois purple flag legal guidelines: How the parade shooter fell although the cracks

In Could, an Illinois man was discovered responsible of unlawful supply of a firearm to an individual who had been handled for psychological sickness throughout the previous 5 years. Prosecutors stated the daddy gave his son an assault-style rifle that he later used to shoot and kill 4 individuals in 2018 at a Waffle Home in Tennessee, regardless of figuring out the son had obtained psychological well being therapy.

In 2020, the mom of an Indiana teen was positioned on probation for failing to take away weapons from her house after her mentally unwell son threatened to kill college students. He fired pictures inside his faculty in 2018. Nobody was injured, however the boy killed himself.

In Washington state, the daddy of a boy who killed 4 college students at a highschool in 2014 was convicted of illegally possessing firearms. He was not charged within the capturing, though considered one of his weapons was used.

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