The Chicago Journal

July 4 Turns Red in Highland Park After Shooter Opened Fire on the Parade in Suburban Chicago

The streets of suburban Chicago glimmered red after a shooter opened fire on the crowd
The streets of suburban Chicago glimmered red after a shooter opened fire on the crowd

People often expect Independence Day to be a holiday full of festivities and celebrations, but when July 4 came, the holiday turned into a tragedy.

In Highland Park, Illinois, a gunman took to the roofs of suburban Chicago to open fire on a parade, causing panic and painting the streets red and littered.

At least six people were killed and 30 injured.

Read also: Assault Weapon Ban “Rational” for Gun Control, Says President Biden

An hour-long manhunt followed, and a 22-year-old man was arrested for being tipped as a person of interest in the shooting.

“It is devastating that a celebration of America was ripped apart by our uniquely American plague,” said Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker. “I’m furious because it does not have to be this way. While we celebrate the Fourth of July just once a year, mass shootings have become a weekly – yes, weekly – American tradition.”

The shooting occurred in an area along the parade route where residents had lined up and settled down to enjoy the show earlier that day. The bullets sent hundreds of people running for their lives, leaving a trail of abandoned objects.

Highland Park Police Chief Lou Jogemen said an officer captured 22-year-old Robert E. Crimo III five miles north of the shooting scene hours later. The capture came after police released a photo of him and his silver Honda Fit. Police were warned earlier that he could be armed and dangerous.

Police did not confirm Crimo was a suspect but shared that identifying him as a person of interest and releasing various information to the public was a serious step to arresting the shooter.

In a press conference, Lake County Major Crime Task Force spokesman Christopher Covelli revealed that five victims died from the initial shooting and another died after being taken to hospital.

NorthShore University Health Center admitted 26 patients from the attack. Reports say all but one victim had gunshot wounds. The age of the victims ranged from 8 to 85 years, and four or five of the patients were children. 

Doctor Brigham Temple said 19 people had been treated and discharged, while other victims had to be transferred to other hospitals. Two patients were in stable condition and kept hospitalized at Highland Park Hospital.

The shooting took place at 10:15 a.m., and the shooter allegedly used a “power rifle” from a commercial building, sitting at an angle that made it difficult for him to be seen. However, police recovered the weapon for the shooting and found a ladder attached to the building.

Police suspect a shooter and warn he may be armed and dangerous. With one gunman still at large, neighboring towns were forced to cancel events. For example, the Chicago White Sox announced that they canceled a fireworks display after their game due to the incident.

Read also: A Truck with 50 Dead People Found at an Intersection in San Antonio

Opinions expressed by The Chicago Journal contributors are their own.