(NewsNation) — Drivers on the busy Chicago-area thoroughfare, U.S. 41, in Lake Forest saw the dramatic end to an hourslong manhunt Monday evening as a person of interest in a July 4 parade shooting was taken into custody.
Kate Rappel told NewsNation’s Rich McHugh that she was on her way from a grocery store with her 12-year-old son and was stopped at an intersection near U.S. 41 and Westleigh Road when they saw 10-15 law enforcement vehicles surround a car.
“My son and I kind of looked at each other and we froze because we knew what it was,” she said. “We had been watching the news all day.”
Rappel said she had her son duck down in the passenger’s seat and she began filming the arrest of 21-year-old Robert “Bobby” E. Crimo III. That video was obtained exclusively by NewsNation.
Earlier in the day, police announced they were looking to question Crimo in connection with the shooting at the Highland Park July 4 parade that left at least six dead and 30 hurt.
“The police, over a loudspeaker, told him to get out of the car, which he did. And he seemed very calm, emotionless,” she said.
She described how Crimo put his hands on his head and officers at the scene “all had their guns drawn and then they all sort of surrounded him — K-9s included.”
Rappel said she got “a perfect glance” at the man being taken into custody and said she “could tell it was him because he had a tattoo under his eye” that matched images shared of Crimo by law enforcement hours earlier.
“I was just in shock but so overcome with grief by what he had done that I was just relieved that he was finally being apprehended,” Rappel said.
As the arrest took place just feet away, Rappel said she repeatedly told her son to “stay on the ground” because she didn’t know if the man was armed or if there was any other danger.
“All the law enforcement had their guns drawn and all I could think was what an amazing force and a sense of safety that I felt knowing they were all there so quickly and they were on top of it. So much gratitude for law enforcement today,” she said.