By Yashwant Raj
Washington, Jul 5 (IANS): US police are looking for a 22-year-old man who opened fire on a July 4 parade in Highland Park, Chicago killing 6 people and wounding a dozen on Monday.
The police identified Robert E. "Bobby" Crimo III as a "person of interest" and also released his picture for people to identify and inform the authorities.
The police said that the shooter used a high-powered rifle and shot into the parade from the rooftop of a building on the route. Christopher Covelli of the Lake County sheriff's office and the Lake County major crimes task force, said the shooting was "very random, very intentional".
There was no word on his motivation yet.
Fourth of July is the American Independence day and it is a national holiday.
Lake County Coroner Jennifer Banek said that five people died at the scene of the shooting, all adults. And the sixth victim died in hospital. All of the victims have been identified, though authorities still were notifying families.
The shooter allegedly opened fire on the parade at around 10 a.m. Miles Zaremski, a Highland Park resident, told the Chicago Sun-Times: "I heard 20 to 25 shots, which were in rapid succession. So it couldn't have been just a handgun or a shotgun."
Witnesses described people fleeing in utter panic when shooting started.
"It was a quiet, peaceful, lovely morning, people were enjoying the parade," Adrienne Drell, a former Sun-Times reporter, said, "Within seconds, to have that peacefulness suddenly ripped apart, it's scary. You can't go anywhere, you can't find peace. I think we are falling apart."
US President Joe Biden said in a statement, "I recently signed the first major bipartisan gun reform legislation in almost thirty years into law, which includes actions that will save lives. But there is much more work to do, and I'm not going to give up fighting the epidemic of gun violence."
The legislation, which was crafted and passed with bipartisan support from Democrats and Republicans, seeks to expand background check for prospective gun buyers, prevents abusive boyfriends and partners from buying guns and seeks to encourage states to pass laws to allow authorities and relatives to deny gun possession to people who are a danger to themselves and others.
This legislation broke decades of logjam on gun reforms.
"Today's shooting is an unmistakable reminder that more should be done to address gun violence in our country," Vice-President Kamala Harris said in a separate statement. "President Biden recently signed into law the first major bipartisan gun reform legislation in almost 30 years a" and we will continue fighting to end this senseless violence.