Father of accused Illinois July 4 shooter’s bond set at $50,000

Midwest

A memorial to the seven people killed and others injured in Monday’s Fourth of July mass shooting grows at a veterans memorial, Wednesday, July 6, 2022, in Highland Park, Ill., a Chicago suburb. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)

(NewsNation) — Bond was set at $50,000 for the father of a man accused of killing seven people at a July Fourth parade in Highland Park, Illinois, who was charged Friday on seven counts of reckless conduct.

Prosecutors and Highland Park police allege that Robert Crimo Jr., the father of 21-year-old Robert “Bobby” Crimo III, was criminally reckless when he helped his son procure a FOID card, NewsNation local affiliate WGN reported.

The Associated Press reports that Crimo Jr. looked somber and tired as he made his first appearance before a judge since surrendering to police Friday. His lawyer told the judge Saturday that Crimo would be able to pay the required $50,000 bond amount.

Part of the conditions for Crimo Jr.’s release, Lake County Judge Jacquelyn Melius said, are that he turn in any gun licenses or weapons at his home.

Because Robert Crimo III was under 21 at the time the FOID card was obtained, he wasn’t able to get one without his father’s participation in the application process, Lake County State’s Attorney Eric Rinehart said at a news conference Friday.

Prosecutors say that by helping his son get the card Robert Crimo Jr. was a contributing cause to bodily harm suffered by the victims of the mass shooting.

“Parents and guardians are in the best position to decide whether their teenager should have a weapon. They are the first line of defense,” Rinehart said, according to WGN. “In this case, that system failed when Robert Crimo Jr. sponsored his son. He knew what he knew, and he signed the form anyway.  This was criminally reckless and a contributing cause to the bodily harm suffered by the victims on July 4th.”

An attorney for Bob Crimo, the father of 21-year-old Robert “Bobby” Crimo III, previously told NewsNation on the day after the shooting that his client was “completely in the dark” about the potential for their son to commit the crimes of which he’s accused.

In a statement, the lawyer said that the charges brought by Highland Park officials are “baseless and unprecedented,” per WGN.

“These charges are absurd and we will fight them every step of the way,” the statement said.

Crimo III faces 117 felony counts for the attack on July, 4, 2022 and has pleaded not guilty. The seven who died are Nicolas Toledo, 78, Jacki Sundheim, 63, Katherine Goldstein, 64, Irina McCarthy, 35, and Kevin McCarthy, 37, Stephen Straus, 88, and Eduardo Uvaldo, 69.

Crimo Jr’s next hearing is set for Jan.12.

While legal experts have said it’s rare for an accused shooter’s parent or guardian to face charges, partly because it’s difficult to prove them, it has happened before. A Michigan prosecutor last year filed involuntary manslaughter charges against the parents of a teen accused of fatally shooting four students at his high school.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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