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Accused Gunman In Fourth Of July Parade Shooting Backs Out Of Plea Deal

Robert Crimo III, the man accused of a mass shooting at a Fourth of July parade in Highland Park, Illinois, two years ago, rejected a proposed plea deal on Wednesday (June 26). Crimo, who was charged with killing seven people and injuring dozens, had initially agreed to plead guilty to seven counts of murder and 48 counts of aggravated battery. In exchange, he would have been sentenced to life in prison.

However, when asked by the judge if he accepted the plea deal, Crimo did not respond. After a recess to discuss the deal with his attorneys, Crimo returned to the courtroom and declined the plea deal. A trial has been tentatively set for February 25, 2025.

The 2022 mass shooting in Highland Park, a wealthy suburb north of Chicago, left seven people dead, including five people over the age of 60. The victims were Katherine Goldstein, 64; Irina McCarthy, 35; Kevin McCarthy, 37; Jacquelyn Sundheim, 63; Stephen Straus, 88; Nicolas Toledo-Zaragoza, 78; and Eduardo Uvaldo, 69. Another 48 people were injured, including an 8-year-old boy who was paralyzed by a shot to the back.

Crimo, 21 at the time of the shooting, was arrested after a brief car chase in nearby Lake Forest later that day. He admitted to carrying out the attack, authorities said in court. If convicted, he faces a maximum sentence of life in prison, as Illinois does not have the death penalty.

Victims’ family members and attorneys expressed their frustrations outside court Wednesday. Leah Sundheim, the daughter of victim Jacquelyn Sundheim, said, “We were yet again shown his complete and blatant disregard for humans, for anyone, for all of us, in that courtroom.”

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