Earlier this year, Robert Crimo, Jr., the father of alleged Highland Park killer Robert Crimo, III, was indicted on seven felony counts of reckless conduct. Prosecutors alleged that the father should have known that his son was a danger and had allegedly threatened violence when he helped the then-19-year-old purchase firearms.
The charges against the father were based on the fact that Crimo, Jr. had sponsored his son’s Illinois FOID card application in 2019. The son then legally purchased his firearms, passing all required background checks. The shooting took place during a July 4th parade in Highland Park, Illinois in 2022.
As Lake County, Illinois, State’s Attorney Eric Rinehart said at the time of the indictment . . .
Parents who help their kids get weapons of war are morally and legally responsible when those kids hurt others with those weapons.
Crimo’s trial on the reckless conduct charged was scheduled to start today. But in a last-minute deal, he pleaded guilty to seven reduced misdemeanor counts of reckless conduct.
As part of the deal reached with prosecutors, he will be on probation for two years, serve 60 days in jail, and complete 100 hours of community service. He is expected to report to jail to begin serving his sentence on November 15.
The charges were, to say the least, novel. Blaming a father for an adult child’s conduct would have been a challenge to prove in court. The defense had elected a bench trial with the expectation that given the pre-trial publicity surrounding the shooting, Crimo, Jr. couldn’t have gotten a fair jury trial in northern Illinois.
The difficulty in proving allegations of responsibility on the part of a parent likely prompted prosecutors to offer a plea deal to reduced misdemeanor charges. Interestingly . . .
As part of his plea deal, Crimo Jr. has agreed to testify if called at his son’s criminal trial, prosecutors said. The date for that trial has not been set.