- The Washington Times
Monday, July 4, 2022

Police have identified a “person of interest” in the Highland Park, Illinois, mass shooting.

At a Monday afternoon press conference, police identified the person as Robert E. Crimo III.

“He is considered armed and dangerous,” Highland Park Police Chief Lou Jogmen told reporters.

Chief Jogmen said Mr. Crimo goes by “Bobby” and is “from the area” of Chicago‘s northern suburbs, though he wouldn’t specify Highland Park.

Mr. Crimo was identified by authorities as 22 and as driving a silver 2010 Honda Fit.

According to the Internet Movie Database, a “Bobby Crimo” who was born in 2000 is known “as Awake The Rapper” and “is an American rapper, singer, songwriter, actor and director from Chicago.”

“Bobby Crimo” also has Facebook, LinkedIn and Vimeo accounts that were taken down shortly after Highland Park police publicly named their suspect in the shooting.

One of the “Bobby Crimo” Vimeo videos was viewed by the Washington Times before it was taken down.

It was posted eight months ago and is called “Are You Awake?”

The first-person, nihilistic song identifies the performer as a sleepwalker and includes images of someone shooting a rifle into a crowd and stylized stick figures with red splotches.

The all-spoken lyrics include verses like “I need to leave now. I need to just do it. It is my destiny. / Everything has led up to this. Nothing can stop me, not even myself. / Is there such thing as free will, or has this been planned out like a cosmic recipe?”

“My actions will be valiant / And my thought is unnecessary,” the rapper says.

At one point in the video, as the performer sits on a bed, a newspaper can be seen taped to the wall behind him. The banner headline reads “Oswald slain in jail shift.”

Police released a photo of the Robert Crimo who is a “person of interest.” Both that person and the performer in the rap video have a distinctive red-and-green flower tattoo on the neck.

A Facebook page identified as “Robert Crimo” was taken down. The account’s top and most-recent post was from May 29, 2021, and merely says “you are all sinners.”

The gunman killed six people and wounded 24 others in Highland Park as the northern Chicago suburb hosted its annual Independence Day parade.

Police had issued a description of the suspect not long after the attack — a white male with long black hair. Authorities initially said the suspect was believed to be aged 18-20, though Mr. Crimo is 22.

The gunman began firing on the crowd from a rooftop at around 10:15 a.m. Central Time, when the parade was getting near its end.

The weapon, a “high-powered rifle” was abandoned at the crime scene. The gunman reached the rooftop via an external ladder that had not been secured, authorities said.

While the suspect remained at large, several nearby towns — Evanston, Deerfield, Skokie, Waukegan and Glencoe — canceled public celebrations, fearing another attack.

• Victor Morton can be reached at vmorton@washingtontimes.com.

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