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Police: Home of Highland Park Shooter Was a Source of Utter Chaos

City of Highland Park Police Department via AP

Robert Crimo III is the Highland Park shooter. We can dispense with the seeds of doubt here. He confessed to the murders. Crimo went onto a rooftop on July 4 and fired upon paradegoers. He killed seven people and wounded at least 45 others. He dressed as a woman to avoid detection after completing his senseless rampage. Police arrested Crimo later that evening. Once again, we learn that Crimo was known to law enforcement. He posted violent content on the internet. He attempted suicide in 2019. That’s the same year when he also threatened to kill his family. This kid was a total nutcase.  What does dad do? He co-signs his firearm owner identification card (FOID), which is required in Illinois to own firearms and ammunition. Your son threatens to kill you, and your next move is to co-sign a FOID card. Is anyone home over there?


The suicide and murder threats from 2019 prompted the police to seize Crimo's knives; Crimo did not own firearms yet. Authorities added that since Crimo had no FOID card at the time, there was nothing to review. Crimo also had mental health issues dating back to middle school. Illinois is one of the most anti-gun states in the country. They have red flag laws. Nothing that anti-gun liberals are pushing as public policy would have stopped Crimo. We’re also learning that his home was an epicenter of chaos. Police documents cite emergency services being called to the Crimo home multiple times (via Fox News):

The parents of Highland Park Fourth of July shooting suspect Robert "Bobby" Crimo III had a long list of encounters with law enforcement — involving many domestic disputes, bizarre complaints and allegations of other men pursuing the mother romantically, Illinois police records show.

Before their son was accused of opening fire on an Independence Day celebration Monday, killing at least seven and wounding dozens more, Highland Park police had 51 pages of incident reports related to their home.

The couple often traded barbs and called police on one another as their son was growing up, the documents show. Denise Pesina, his mother, told officers her husband "threatens to call police for any and every argument we get in. He wants the police to think I’m crazy."


Officers noted on several occasions that Pesina gave them contradictory statements — but many encounters were resolved with Crimo leaving for the night.

Police referred one case to the state’s attorney’s office in 2010 after Crimo told police that his wife "hit him with a screwdriver" and scratched his arm after "a few minutes of her trash talking." He also complained she "clotheslined" his dresser and knocked his belongings to the floor before removing the lock on the bedroom door. 

He left the screwdriver out of his written statement, and prosecutors ultimately declined charges.


They called police on each other frequently, often to report issues including verbal arguments, midday intoxication and unwanted encounters with neighbors at their suburban home outside Chicago. One call came simply to report roadkill on their street.

The documents appear to support the accounts of former neighbors and Crimo III's onetime coach, who told Fox News Digital Tuesday that the parents had issues and police were often seen outside the family home.

"I remember the parents more than him because they were kind of a problem," recalled Jeremy Cahnmann, who ran an afterschool sports program at Lincoln Elementary School. "There wasn't a lot of love in that family."


Well, that explains some of it. Initially, I thought this would be a case grounded on what to do regarding violent social media posts. Red flags of this kid’s disturbing behavior were pervasive, but nothing happened. Our laws are comically behind where technology is, and no one should trust Congress to dole out remedies here. The average age is 7,000 years old. When people can remember landlines, pigeon carriers, and Western Union dominating methods of communication—those folks cannot be part of this conversation, and that feels like 2/3 of Congress. The FOID card development and the suicide threat led to this shooting becoming another preventable tragedy. The parents didn’t press charges when Crimo made a death threat against them. That’s why there was no review.

Will the parents be charged? It’s too early to say. It could happen. Will civil lawsuits be slapped against them? I would bet heavily that’s going to happen, given what we know now. Their kid was unhinged. He was a headcase, and the father co-signed the card that permitted him to buy the long gun used in the crime.


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