At least seven people were killed and dozens wounded Monday morning in the north Chicago suburb of Highland Park, around 20 miles from Loyola’s Lake Shore Campus (LSC), after a shooter began firing at parade-goers who were taking part in a Fourth of July celebration, according to the Associated Press (AP).
22-year-old Robert “Bobby” Crimo was arrested by Highland Park Police Monday evening following a brief pursuit. He has been charged with seven counts of first-degree murder and if convicted would serve a mandatory life sentence without the possibility of parole, according to the AP.
The suspect started shooting at the crowd around 10:10 a.m. from a nearby rooftop with a legally acquired rifle that was later recovered at the scene, according to a statement from Highland Park’s Mayor Nancy R. Rotering.
Rotering said in the same statement that she is thankful for the help of local, state, and federal resources used to help apprehend the perpetrator.
“Our community, like so many others, is devastated,” Rotering said. “It’s impossible to imagine the pain of this kind of tragedy until you are confronted with it.”
Law enforcement agencies secured a perimeter around downtown Highland Park following the shooting, according to Highland Park Police. In the same statement, police recommended individuals within the area to shelter in place.
The suspect was previously identified as a white man, approximately 18-20 years old with a small build, long black hair and was last seen wearing a white or blue T-shirt, the Highland Park Police said in a press conference Monday afternoon.
According to the Lake County Coroner’s Office, among the seven deceased, six have been have been identified, including Nicolas Toledo (76) of Morelos, Mexico, Katherine Goldstein (64) of Highland Park, Irina McCarthy (35) of Highland Park, Kevin McCarthy (37) of Highland Park, Jacquelyn Sundheim (63) of Highland Park and Stephen Straus (88) of Highland Park.
The seventh victim, who has yet to be identified, succumbed to injuries in Cook County, according to a July 6 statement from the City of Highland Park’s Mayor’s Office.
Surrounding communities began to cancel their Fourth of July celebrations in response to the incident. So far, several suburbs including Evanston, Skokie and Morton Grove have canceled annual firework and parade celebrations.
The 49th Ward’s Office has not released a statement on canceling Fourth of July events within Rogers Park.
This is a developing story.