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An Illinois grand jury will see evidence in the case of the father of the man accused of gunning down dozens of people during a Fourth of July parade in a Chicago suburb.
Robert Crimo Jr., 58, is facing seven felony charges for allegedly helping his son, Robert Crimo III, get a state-required ID card that would allow him to legally own a gun.
During a preliminary hearing on Thursday, prosecutors told Lake County Circuit Judge George Strickland that they are presenting evidence to a grand jury for a possible indictment against Crimo Jr., the Associated Press reported. They reportedly said that they expect a decision from the Lake County court in Waukegan by mid-February.
Crimo III is believed to have used an assault weapon on the crowd gathered for a Fourth of July parade in Highland Park, a suburb of Chicago.
Seven people were killed and dozens more were injured.
The younger Crimo is alleged to have opened fire from a perch on top of a building along the parade route and then dressing in women’s clothing in an attempt to blend in with the terrified crowd fleeing the scene.
The elder Crimo, a failed 2019 candidate for Highland Park mayor, was arrested in December. Prosecutors say he was criminally reckless for helping his son procure a Firearm Owners Identification (FOID) card, a requirement for legal ownership of a firearm in Illinois, and that in doing so, the elder Crimo contributed to the bodily harm suffered.
While Illinois residents must be over 21 years old to get a FOID card, guardians can sponsor someone younger than that. Crimo Jr. has openly admitted to helping his son get the card. In July, he told local ABC affiliate WLS that he doesn’t regret it, despite multiple red flags indicating Crimo III’s dangerousness.
In April 2019, a police report shows that Crimo III’s mother told police her son “attempted to commit suicide by machete” and that he had a “history of attempts,” according to WLS.
That September, a member of Crimo III’s family reportedly alerted police that Crimo had a knife collection and that he had said he was going to “kill everyone.” Officials confiscated more than a dozen knives, along with a dagger and a sword, from Crimo’s home at the time.
Nevertheless, the suspect’s father didn’t indicate that he felt any remorse over helping his son get the weapon he allegedly used to rain fire down on dozens of people from the top of a building along the parade route.
“Guilty, no, he did it all on his own,” Crimo Jr. told WLS last summer.
One count of reckless conduct carries a maximum three-year prison sentence. Crimo Jr.’s next court date is Feb. 16.
Crimo III has been indicted on 117 counts, including 21 counts of murder — three counts each for the people who died — for the Independence Day massacre. He has a case management conference scheduled for next week.
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