The man accused of opening fire on a Fourth of July parade near the city of Chicago in the United States, leaving seven dead and more than two dozen injured has been charged with seven counts of murder.
Illinois State Attorney Eric Rinehart said on Tuesday, July 5, that the suspected gunman, Robert E Crimo III, faces a mandatory life sentence without the possibility of parole if he is convicted.
“These are just the first of many charges that will be filed against Mr. Crimo, I want to emphasize that,” Rinehart said, adding he anticipates “dozens of more charges centering around each of the victims.”
Crimo has been in police custody since being apprehended Monday evening.
“Tomorrow morning at the Lake County courthouse, we will ask a judge to hold Mr. Crimo without the possibility of bail,” Rinehart said.
The young man is accused of shooting his victims from a sniper’s perch on a rooftop above the parade in the Chicago suburb of Highland Park, Illinois.
Officials said he had planned the attack for weeks.
They said he fired more than 70 rounds at random into the crowd watching Monday’s parade and that he was dressed in women’s clothes to help conceal his identity and blend in with the panic-stricken crowd as he fled.
“He blended right in with everybody else as they were running around, almost as if he was an innocent spectator as well,” said Sergeant Chris Covelli, a spokesperson for the Lake County Sheriff’s office, adding that the suspect has distinctive facial tattoos.
Jennifer Banek, Lake County Coroner, read the list of names during the news conference. The victims are as follows:
64-year-old Katherine Goldstein of Highland Park
35-year-old Irina McCarthy of Highland Park
37-year-old Kevin McCarthy of Highland Park
63-year-old Jacquelyn Sundheim of Highland Park
88-year-old Stephen Straus of Highland Park
78-year-old Nicolas Toledo-Zaragoza of Morelos, Mexico
A seventh victim died at a hospital outside of Lake County, Banek said.