22-year-old rapper named as person of interest in US Highland Park shooting

A 22-year-old man called Robert “Bobby” E Crimo III, who performs under the rap alias Awake The Rapper, has been identified as a “person of interest” in yesterday’s Illinois shooting (July 4).

Six people were shot dead by a rooftop gunman during an Independence Day parade in the city of Highland Park, Illinois, which is located approximately 25 miles north of downtown Chicago (via BBC News).

According to officials, the attacker targeted attendees of the parade at random with a high-powered rifle. It’s said that 24 people were also taken to hospital.

Police later named a suspect as Robert E Crimo III, who they considered to be armed and dangerous. Crimo has since been taken into custody in Lake Forest, Illinois following a brief police pursuit last night, per Consequence Of Sound.

As COS notes, Crimo has a small cult following as a rapper; at least two of his tracks have registered over one million streams on Spotify. In one song that was released last year, he fantasises about a mass shooting and being killed by police.

It is said that the release’s accompanying video sees Crimo posing in a school classroom with ammunition.

The publication also claims that Crimo’s father ran for mayor of Highland Park back in 2019.

Five people were killed at the scene in yesterday’s shooting, with a sixth person subsequently dying in a nearby hospital.

Nancy Rotering, the mayor of Highland Park, said: “On a day that we came together to celebrate community and freedom, we’re instead mourning the tragic loss of life.”

President Joe Biden wrote: “Jill and I are shocked by the senseless gun violence that has yet again brought grief to an American community this Independence Day. As always, we are grateful for the first responders and law enforcement on the scene.

“I will not give up fighting the epidemic of gun violence.”

Back in May, 19 young children and two adults died in a mass shooting at an elementary school in Uvalde, Texas. That same month, 10 people were killed in what’s believed to be a racially-motivated attack at a supermarket in Buffalo, New York.

US Congress last month passed bipartisan legislation on gun control in the US, which imposes stricter checks on young buyers and encourages states to remove firearms from civilians who could be a threat.

It came after the likes of Madonna, Olivia Rodrigo and Jack White joined the many famous figures in calling for tougher gun control in the wake of the recent shootings.