Authorities charged the suspect in Monday’s shooting at a Highland Park, Ill., Fourth of July parade with seven counts of first-degree murder.
Eric Rinehart, the Lake County state’s attorney who announced the charges, said at a Tuesday evening press conference that he anticipated “dozens” of additional charges against Robert Crimo III, calling Monday’s shooting a “premeditated and calculated attack.”
“The loss of life and these devastating injuries and the overwhelming psychological trauma demand we seek justice and that we take broader action to protect life,” he said.
Monday’s shooting killed at least seven people and injured more than 30 others, causing chaos at the July 4 celebration as crowds attempted to flee the scene.
If convicted, the 21-year-old suspect would face a mandatory life sentence without possibility of parole, Rinehart said.
John Lausch, the U.S. attorney for the Northern District of Illinois, called the state murder charges “appropriate at this time” but declined to provide details of potential forthcoming federal charges.
Rinehart also called for a nationwide assault weapons ban and more awareness of the Illinois’s red flag law, which allows people to petition a court to remove firearms from people deemed a danger to themselves or others.
Authorities previously said the suspect threatened to “kill everyone” at his house in September 2019, leading police to confiscate his collection of knives.
Police said earlier on Tuesday that the alleged gunman planned the shooting for “several weeks.” He allegedly purchased a rifle similar to an AR-15 and opened fire on the crowd after accessing the roof of a local business, later allegedly blending into the crowd by dressing as a woman.
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