Massive Disappointment As Highland Park Shooter CHANGES Decision Last Minute Rejecting Plea Deal

Highland Park Shooting Daily Report June 27,2024

In a stunning move Wednesday, the accused mass shooter who claimed seven lives at Highland Park’s 2022 Fourth of July parade rejected an offer to plead guilty in a minute-long hearing that left survivors and victims’ family members stunned.

In exchange, Robert Crimo III had first accepted a plea to seven counts of murder and 48 other charges for life in prison. But on Wednesday, reportedly in court, Crimo changed his mind and backed out of the deal.

The deputies wheeling Crimo into court said the man who told Pham about hearing gunfire in his sleep was silent when they removed him from their transport van with “47” – a facial tattoo experts had previously suggested could be for reverse 7/4 (the mass-shooting date) on his left cheek. It was the first time he arrived in court using a wheelchair, and officials did not say why.

Crimo went silent when asked about the plea, and his attorneys requested a recess to discuss it. Once Crimo and his defense team returned, the alleged mass murderer responded with a simple no to the plea deal — prompting Judge Timothy J. Joyce then set trial in his case for February 25, 2025.

But the sudden reversal caught victims and their families by surprise as they prepared to testify about how shootings had impacted them before Judge Victoria Rossetti was going to deliver a sentence.

“We came to court today in hopes that we could put this out of our mind,” Leah Sundheim, the daughter of slain victim Jacquelyn Sundheim, 63, told reporters outside the courthouse. 

“We have Fourth of July coming up and it’ll be two years and all I wanted was to fully grieve my mom without the trial, knowing that he was going to spend the rest of his life in jail,” Leah added. 

“And instead, he was shown, yet again, his complete and blatant disregard for humans.” 

Crimo chose to defend himself in court last year, but reversed the decision when he realized being an attorney is a challenge of its own.

Crimo’s most recent about-face means he will now stand trial on all 117 felony counts tied to the ghastly shooting, in which prosecutors have said Crimo ascended a downtown Highland Park store and began blasting away with an Army-style rifle at passers-by.

The fatalities become seven, including an 8-year-old boy who will remain paralyzed for life and wounded by the collapse of a school wall on his head.

Crimo dressed as a female and fled in the confusion, driving to Wisconsin but returning early the next day.

Prosecutors say Crimo even gave up in the middle of driving towards Madison, Wisconsin, for a July Fourth celebration and “seriously contemplated” another mass shooting.

Crimo has been quiet the last two years and his motives remain a mystery. Before, investigators had noted Crimo’s strange fixation on the numbers 4 and 7 — he has them tattooed onto his right cheek. Officials did not offer insight on the significance of this number, and many have been left to theorize if that is what inspired Crimo to attack on July 4.

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