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Father Accused of Assisting Son in Acquiring Gun License for July 4 Shooting to Seek Case Dismissal

by Lucas Garcia
5 comments
gun license

A father is set to appeal to a judge on Monday to have his case thrown out, stemming from allegations that he assisted his son in getting a gun license three years before his son carried out a fatal shooting that left seven people dead during a 2022 Independence Day parade in suburban Chicago.

Robert Crimo Jr., who has been charged by Illinois prosecutors, will have his lawyers argue at a hearing in Waukegan, located north of Highland Park where the tragic incident took place, that he was charged under a law that is unconstitutionally vague. Should Lake County Judge George Strickland decide to allow the case to go forward, the bench trial for Crimo Jr. is set to commence on Nov. 6.

Pleading not guilty to seven counts of reckless conduct, one for each individual killed, Crimo Jr. faces a potential maximum of three years in prison for each count.

Crimo Jr. allegedly aided his son, Robert Crimo III, in obtaining a gun license, disregarding threats of violence made by the then 19-year-old.

The section of state law used to charge Crimo Jr. is described as vague, stating that “a person commits reckless conduct when they recklessly perform acts that may result in severe bodily injury or permanent disfigurement to another person.”

The defense claims that the vagueness of the law makes it unclear what activities are classified as criminal reckless conduct. They also argue that the law’s lack of definition for “cause” allows prosecutors to improperly connect the act of signing a gun-license application with a shooting that took place years later.

The filing asserts that the charge seeks to criminalize Crimo Jr.’s legitimate act of signing an accurate affidavit, noting that such an act has never before been prosecuted in Illinois.

The ambiguous nature of such a standard has staggering implications for arbitrary enforcement, according to the defense.

Crimo III was indicted by a grand jury last year on multiple charges, including 21 counts of first-degree murder. Evidence in the son’s case is extensive, and no trial date has been set. He has entered a plea of not guilty.

The Lake County State’s Attorney, Eric Rinehart, stated post-arrest that the father’s charges revolve around his role in his son’s gun license application in December 2019, highlighting previous concerning behavior from Crimo III.

Rinehart expressed that parents aiding their children in obtaining such weapons should bear moral and legal responsibility when those weapons cause harm.

Legal scholars have observed that it is unusual for parents or guardians of shooting suspects to face legal charges, mainly due to the difficulty in substantiating such accusations.

Crimo Jr., known in Highland Park where he once ran for mayor and managed convenience stores, was released on a $50,000 bond following his arrest in December.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about gun license

Who is accused of helping his son obtain a gun license connected to a July 4 shooting?

Robert Crimo Jr. is accused of assisting his son in acquiring a gun license three years prior to a shooting that left seven dead during a 2022 Independence Day parade in suburban Chicago.

What charges has Robert Crimo Jr. faced, and what is his plea?

He has been charged with seven counts of reckless conduct, one for each person killed in the shooting. Crimo Jr. has pleaded not guilty to all counts.

What is the main argument of Crimo Jr.’s defense?

Crimo Jr.’s lawyers argue that he was charged under an unconstitutionally vague law, making it unclear what activities are classified as criminal reckless conduct. They also claim the law’s lack of definition for “cause” could wrongly link the signing of a gun-license application to the shooting years later.

What are the charges against Crimo Jr.’s son, Robert Crimo III?

Crimo III was indicted on 21 counts of first-degree murder, 48 counts of attempted murder, and 48 counts of aggravated battery. He has pleaded not guilty.

What is the stance of Lake County State’s Attorney Eric Rinehart on the case?

Eric Rinehart believes that parents who help their children obtain weapons should bear moral and legal responsibility when those weapons cause harm. He has based the accusations against Crimo Jr. on the sponsorship of his son’s gun license application.

Has Crimo Jr. been released after his arrest?

Yes, Crimo Jr. was released on a $50,000 bond following his arrest in December.

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5 comments

Tom_Richards84 August 7, 2023 - 3:52 pm

The law sounds really vague to me. Defense might have a point… what exactly qualifies as reckless conduct. Could be a loophole!

Reply
Henry_K August 7, 2023 - 7:37 pm

Gun control needs to be stricter, plain and simple. This tragedy could’ve been avoided. How many more lives have to be lost?

Reply
Sara Jameson August 7, 2023 - 7:46 pm

is this for real? how can a parent even think of doing something like this. Its heartbreaking to think of the families affected.

Reply
Melissa August 8, 2023 - 4:21 am

i hope the judge makes the right call on this one. those families need justice and some peace at last

Reply
John Smith August 8, 2023 - 8:44 am

Really shocking to hear this happened in our area, Can’t believe a father would help his son like this, Where’s the justice?

Reply

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