In a recent court hearing, attorney George Gomez passionately argued for the dismissal of reckless conduct charges against Robert Crimo Jr., the father of accused Highland Park parade shooter Robert Crimo III. Gomez contended that the charges should be dropped due to the perceived vagueness and overly broad nature of the state laws invoked by the prosecutors.
The shooting spree on July 4, 2022, sent shockwaves through the community, leaving seven innocent individuals dead and numerous others wounded. While Crimo III awaits trial on more than 100 felony counts, his father finds himself facing charges of reckless conduct for endorsing state forms that allowed his then-underaged son to acquire a firearm owners ID card, subsequently enabling the purchase of firearms.
Prosecutors assert that Crimo Jr. acted recklessly by vouching for his troubled and potentially violent son, highlighting that he should have been aware of the risks. However, Gomez argued that the father’s accurate representations on the state firearms’ forms should not be misconstrued as reckless behavior. “Signing an affidavit that is truthful is not against the law,” Gomez emphasized.
During the hearing, Judge George Strickland expressed some disagreement with Gomez’s assertion that the state’s reckless conduct statute is overly broad. The judge recognized the challenges faced by lawmakers in drafting a comprehensive list of reckless acts, stating, “There’s no way the legislature can codify human behavior.”
Additionally, Strickland questioned his ability to make factual findings about the truthfulness of the affidavit Crimo Jr. had signed at this pretrial stage. He explained that such findings would be determined based on evidence presented during the trial, which he is set to preside over later this year. “I can’t make any findings because I don’t know any of the facts of the case,” noted Strickland.
Gomez is also seeking a ruling that the statute of limitations had expired on the reckless conduct charge. In opposition, prosecutors contend that the reckless conduct scenario only came into play after Crimo Jr.’s son allegedly fired upon the crowd at the Independence Day parade.
Lake County Judge Strickland has scheduled a ruling on the motion to dismiss for August 28, allowing both parties to present their arguments before he makes a decision. The outcome of this crucial court hearing will undoubtedly play a pivotal role in determining the fate of Robert Crimo Jr., a key figure in this devastating tragedy that unfolded in Highland Park.
Stay tuned as we continue to provide updates on this case, delving into the intricacies of the law and its impact on this heart-wrenching episode.