Parade shooting suspect places bizarre prank call to NY Post: ‘Is your refrigerator running?’

After one outlet attempted to secure an interview with the suspect believed responsible for killing seven and wounding dozens more during a Chicago Independence Day parade, his response left them stating, “He must think he’s the Joker.”

Robert Crimo III was arrested on July 4, 2022 after he allegedly opened fire with a rifle on parade-goers from a rooftop overlooking an Independence Day celebration in Highland Park, just north of Chicago, Illinois. The suspect, who pleaded not guilty in August to more than 117 felony charges pertaining to seven murders along with aggravated battery and attempted murder of the 48 injured, can now add a “sick joke” to his offenses, according to the New York Post.

On Saturday, the outlet reported that one of its reporters had been attempting to schedule an interview with the suspect through the Lake County Adult Corrections Facility communications app in December to no avail. Instead, what they got, via a pre-recorded voice message left on New Year’s Eve, was an apparent attempt at humor.

The Post detailed, “‘Is your refrigerator running?’ Crimo, 22, asked, squealing maniacally. ‘You better go catch it!’ he said, cackling in glee and hanging up.”

Liz Turnipseed, one of the victims of the attack who had been shot in pelvis, reacted to the story by telling the outlet, “He clearly doesn’t have any respect for life and people in any way shape or form.”

The mother, who had been joined by her husband and their three-year-old daughter at the parade, is one of those who’ve filed suit against Crimo and the gun manufacturer, Smith & Wesson, and had previously detailed her dependence on a cane to walk as well as her experience with panic attacks in crowded spaces.

She went on to tell the Post, “Whether that’s him making an unbelievable lame prank call to a reporter or committing a mass shooting, I think it just speaks to the terrible person that is.”

The latest from Crimo follows the arrest of his father, Robert Crimo Jr., in December on seven counts of felony reckless conduct for his part in helping his son obtain the gun used in the alleged crime.

As covered by American Wire News, Lake County State’s Attorney Eric Rinehart said at a press conference in December, “Parents and guardians are in the best position to decide whether their teenager should have a weapon. They are the first line of defense. In this case, that system failed when Robert Crimo Jr. sponsored his son. He knew what he knew, and he signed the form anyway. This was criminally reckless and a contributing cause to the bodily harm.”

Should he be found guilty of the class 4 felony, Crimo Jr. is likely to serve a maximum of three years in prison as the punishment for each of the seven counts would be served concurrently. Meanwhile, Crimo III is facing a life sentence if found guilty of at least two of the murders or of committing great bodily harm to those injured on July 4.

According to the Post, his defense, the Lake County Public Defender’s Office, declined to comment on the call.

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Kevin Haggerty

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