Arrested suspect of massacre in a parade of July 4 in the United States

Police arrested a 22-year-old man on Monday suspected in the shooting spree that left at least 6 dead and 24 wounded at a US Independence Day parade in an affluent Chicago suburb.

The suspect, identified as Robert Crimo, was taken into custody after a pursuit outside Chicago.

The man, armed with a powerful rifle, fired from a rooftop into the crowd that had gathered for the traditional July 4 parade in Highland Park, a town of 30,000 inhabitants in the state of Illinois.

About two dozen people, including children, were being treated for gunshot wounds, some of them in critical condition, authorities said.

The Lake County sheriff said Crimo was “in custody.” Earlier, the police had warned that he was armed and that he was “very dangerous”.

Crimo introduces himself as a musician, calling himself “Awake the Rapper” on the internet.

This massacre occurred within the framework of a wave of armed violence that is sweeping the United States, where approximately 40,000 people are killed annually by firearms.

This incident cast a shadow over America’s most patriotic holiday, where towns and cities hold parades to commemorate independence, families gather, attend sporting events and celebrate with fireworks.

“We were getting ready to march down the street when a wave of people started running towards us. And right before that, we heard pop, pop, pop, pop, pop, and I thought it was fireworks,” said Emily Prazak, who was going to participate in the parade.

Another shooting occurred in Philadelphia during the Fourth of July celebration, leaving two police officers shot and wounded during a fireworks display, US mainstream media reported.

In a video broadcast by CBS News, taken from a building, a panicked crowd is seen fleeing in terror from the place in the middle of fireworks display.

Philadelphia Police Commissioner Danielle Outlaw said both officers had been released, and authorities were still investigating the exact circumstances of the incident.

Spectators as white

Don Johnson, who attended the parade in Highland Park, said at first he thought the gunshots were the noise of a car engine. “And finally, I heard screaming from the other block and people running, carrying their children and their things, and we ran to a gas station,” he told AFP.

“I’ve seen scenes like this over and over again on TV, and I never thought it would happen here,” he added.

Police said gunfire broke out at 10:14 a.m. (3:14 p.m. GMT) when the parade was more than three-quarters of the way through.

“It looks like bystanders were targeted … very random, very sad,” said Lake County Major Crimes Task Force spokesman Christopher Covelli.

Five of the six people killed in the attack died at the scene, while the sixth died on the way to hospital.

Dr. Brigham Temple, from the Highland Park hospital where most of the victims were taken, reported that they had received 25 victims with gunshot wounds, ranging in age from 8 to 85 years. Of them “four or five” minors.

Authorities claimed the shooter used a “high-powered rifle.” “Everything indicates that (the suspect) was discreet, he was very difficult to see,” Covelli added.

A Mexican is among the fatalities, according to the foreign minister of that country, Marcelo Ebrard.

Police said the attacker used a “high-powered rifle” and said “evidence of firearms” was found on the roof of a nearby business.

According to US media, the suspect’s social networks contained violent messages, alluding to weapons and shootings.

More than 300 shootings

Highland Park Mayor Nancy Rotering said in a statement that the city had been “devastated” by the attack.

President Joe Biden said that both he and his wife Jill were “shocked by the senseless gun violence that has once again brought pain to an American community on this Independence Day.”

“I will not stop fighting the epidemic of gun violence,” he promised.

Biden last week signed the first major gun safety and control legislation in decades, just days after the Supreme Court recognized the fundamental right of Americans to carry weapons on the street.

The debate over gun control, which deeply divides society, has reignited after the two most recent killings, that of 10 African-Americans in upstate New York and that of 19 students and two teachers at an elementary school. from the town of Uvalde, Texas.

According to the Gun Violence Archive website, in 2022 there will be 309 recorded shootings in the United States, including at least three others on July 4, without victims.

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