Chicago Parade Shooting Suspect Rehires Public Defenders, Seeks Legal Representation

WAUKEGAN, Ill. — After previously firing his public defenders and insisting on representing himself, the man charged with killing seven people at a Fourth of July parade in suburban Chicago has now requested to be represented by public defenders again. Robert Crimo III is facing multiple charges, including 21 counts of first-degree murder, 48 counts of attempted murder, and 48 counts of aggravated battery for the 2022 shooting in Highland Park, Illinois. The shooting left dozens of people wounded, including an 8-year-old who was partially paralyzed.

Last month, Crimo expressed his desire to represent himself at trial and requested to have his court date moved up. However, he was repeatedly questioned by Lake County Judge Victoria Rossetti about the potential consequences of such a decision, including consecutive life sentences. Eventually, the judge granted his requests but advised him to reconsider.

During a brief court appearance on Friday, Crimo agreed to reappoint Lake County public defenders. His parents, Denise Pesina and Robert Crimo Jr., were present in court but declined to comment on their son’s decision to rehire lawyers. Crimo Jr. had previously pleaded guilty to seven misdemeanors related to the parade attack in a case centered around his son’s gun license. After serving a 60-day sentence, he has since been released.

In 2019, when Crimo III was 19, he was too young to obtain his own gun license. However, he applied with the sponsorship of his father despite a previous report to the police about his collection of knives and threats to harm others. Authorities revealed that Crimo III confessed to the shooting and fleeing to the Madison, Wisconsin area, where he contemplated another attack at a parade.

Lake County State’s Attorney Eric Rinehart, who is prosecuting the case, declined to comment on the defendant’s legal representation. The Lake County Public Defenders Office also refrained from commenting on the case. Crimo’s next court hearing is scheduled for January 10, where the trial date is expected to be discussed.

In summary, the man accused of the Fourth of July parade shooting has reversed his decision to represent himself and has requested the assistance of public defenders once again. His parents, who attended the hearing, did not comment on his choice. The defendant’s father had previously pleaded guilty to misdemeanors related to the shooting. The court will reconvene on January 10 to further address the case.