The parents of the man arrested over the Independence Day massacre have released a statement about the shooting.
Robert E. Crimo III was arrested by police after seven people were murdered and over 40 injured at a 4 July parade in Highland Park, Illinois.
The 21-year-old rapper is said to have taken an AR-15 style rifle with him onto the roof of a store and fired more than 70 rounds at crowds of men, women and children below.
Footage shared on social media shows the moment the shooting starts, with people running for their lives, trying to escape the gunman's line of fire.
Now, Crimo's parents, Bob and Denise, have released a statement, branding the shocking incident a 'tragedy' for every family involved, including their own.
The brief statement reads: "We are all mothers and fathers, sisters and brothers, and this is a terrible tragedy for many families, the victims, the paradegoers, the community, and our own.
"Our hearts, thoughts, and prayers go out to everybody."
According to police, Crimo had actually dressed as a woman in order to evade detection.
Speaking during a press briefing, Lake County Major Crime Task Force spokesperson Christopher Covelli said Crimo had been caught wearing women's clothing.
He was arrested on the evening on Monday (4 July) after a police officer spotted his 2010 silver Honda Fit.
When officers managed to apprehend him, following a brief chase, they discovered that he had a second rifle in his vehicle.
Covelli said there was no indication his mother knew anything or that anyone else was involved in planning or carrying out the mass shooting.
However, authorities have since said that Crimo's father sponsored his son's gun permit application back in 2019, despite him being two years below the legal age limit for a Firearm Owner’s Identification (FOID) card, and having previously threatened to murder his family and kill himself.
In September that year, Illinois State Police received reports of a 'clear and present danger' relating to the Crimo family.
Nineteen years old at the time, Crimo was not arrested, and his application for a gun permit was later granted in January 2020.
According to officials, Crimo's application was approved because there was 'insufficient basis' to reject it.
If you have been affected by any of the issues in this article and wish to speak to someone in confidence, contact Stop Hate UK by visiting their website www.stophateuk.org
Featured Image Credit: @CrimoBob/Twitter / City Of Highland Police
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