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Highland Park, July 4th parade shooting in Illinois

A Lake County, Illinois, police officer walks down Central Avenue in Highland Park on July 4, after a shooter fired on the Fourth of July parade.
A Lake County, Illinois, police officer walks down Central Avenue in Highland Park on July 4, after a shooter fired on the Fourth of July parade. (Brian Cassella/Chicago Tribune/Tribune News Service/Getty Images)

Shortly after 10 a.m. CT Monday, a gunman began firing into a crowd of people attending a Fourth of July parade in Highland Park, Illinois, just north of Chicago. Six people were killed and dozens were wounded, officials say, and the suspect was later apprehended by police following a brief vehicle chase.

A day after gun violence rocked yet another American community, witnesses are processing the traumatic event and investigators are piecing together how it happened.

Here are the latest developments in the Highland Park parade shooting:

Suspect apparently posted violent imagery online: The suspected gunman, Robert E. Crimo III, posted music on several major streaming outlets and on a personal website under the name “Awake the Rapper,” featuring animated scenes of gun violence and ominous sounding lyrics. In one music video titled “Are you Awake,” Crimo is seen with multicolored hair and face tattoos and is narrating, “I need to just do it. It is my destiny.” The video shows a cartoon animation of a stick-figure man — who resembles Crimo — in tactical gear carrying out an attack with a rifle. The videos appear to have been posted online last year.

Suspect’s uncle saw no warning signs, he says: An uncle of the suspect told CNN he saw no warning signs that would prompt him to believe his nephew would have been involved in such a tragedy. “I’m heartbroken. I’m so heartbroken,” Paul A. Crimo said, expressing remorse for the families of the victims and adding he spoke at length to law enforcement Monday about his nephew. The suspect lives in an apartment behind the house owned by his father, Paul said, adding that he last saw his nephew Sunday evening looking at his computer and not acting out of the ordinary.

Former preschool teacher identified as one of the victims: Jacki Sundheim was identified as one of the people who died in the shooting by her synagogue. The North Shore Congregation Israel in Glencoe, Illinois, said in a statement that Sundheim was a lifelong congregant of the synagogue and a member of staff, having been a preschool teacher and events coordinator.

Senator says more must be done: Sen. Dick Durbin of Illinois, the Senate majority whip, touted the recently passed bipartisan gun bill as an important step to combat gun violence, but said there are things the legislation didn’t address. “There is no reason for a person to own a military assault weapon. It has no value for hunting, or sports or even self-defense,” he said. “It is a killing machine.” The gun used in Monday’s shooting was a “high-powered rifle” and the attack appeared to be “random” and “intentional,” said Christopher Covelli, spokesperson for the Lake County Major Crime Task Force.

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